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Imaginary Travel to Machu Picchu: College Admission Essay Sample

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Ever since I was a child, I fantasized on going on an adventure right out of Indiana Jones. If I were given a golden ticket heading anywhere, I would unquestionably opt for an expedition. Right now, my definition of a place that embodies that Indiana Jones’ spirit is Machu Picchu; except my journey there won’t involve any Nazi officers or treasure hunting. I want my expedition to be open to all possibilities; acting upon my instincts and intuition. I tend to be a minimalist, so I just need a backpack, sturdy hiking boots, and some cash. Bringing only what is necessary allows me to better connect with my surroundings

The starting point of the trip will not be Machu Picchu – rather, Cusco, a city in Peru 11,200 feet above sea level, at mid-October when the weather is still dry and cool. Sparing myself one or two days to adjust to the thin air will be a smart idea. After overcoming the altitude and a little bit of jet lag, I will start to prepare.

There are two routes available from Cusco to Machu Picchu – a worn trail used by the Incas and railroad tracks for the train. The trail is known for its severe climb, so, most tourists choose the bus or train. As an adventurer, however, I am here to appreciate the lives of the men who created a great civilization; covering a 5-day journey in only 2 hours would be a disservice. I will team up with professional guides and other explorers for the trek.

The 32-mile hike will start at a marker labeled “Kilometer 82.” The grueling climb with its hundreds of stone steps will elevate us higher and higher into the ever-thinner air. I expect to be exhausted and out of breath all day. I will conquer multiple summits each day, including the Dead Woman’s Pass, notorious for an arduous, slippery climb, higher than that of Machu Picchu. Each night my tent will be flanked by trees, mountains, and the stars of the Milky Way.

At the crack of dawn, we will arrive at Machu Picchu. I have already planned what I envision as the perfect breakfast – a piece of Pollo a la Brasa, grilled chicken with a causa rellena wrapped in aluminum foil. Perched on the edge of a steep drop off, I will carelessly stare at a panorama of the Andes Mountain. When I visualize this moment, I can sense everything, the smell of the morning mist, the dampness on my skin, and vertigo felt from looking down at the vast mountain vistas in every direction. As I stand up, I can make out what seem to be tiny dots of Peruvian llamas which have protected this site for centuries before men found its existence. I squint for a moment as the low morning sun hits my face then I shift my focus to the artifacts and ancient ruins, which possess enigmas still yet to be revealed.

Adventure stimulates our potential by exposing what lies inside us to unexpected situations. New relationships and unfamiliar environments help to expand not only one’s view of the world but one’s view of their own capacity. What we gain from a journey is more important than the destination itself. What stands to be gained from my journey to Machu Picchu is unknown, but therein lies the value of going and my motivation to do so.

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Imaginary Travel to Machu Picchu: College Admission Essay Sample. (2018, May 18). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 28, 2023, from
“Imaginary Travel to Machu Picchu: College Admission Essay Sample.” GradesFixer, 18 May 2018,
Imaginary Travel to Machu Picchu: College Admission Essay Sample. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 28 May 2023].
Imaginary Travel to Machu Picchu: College Admission Essay Sample [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2018 May 18 [cited 2023 May 28]. Available from:
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