Machu Pichu Reopens For One Guy Who Waited Seven Months To See It
One single tourist was granted access to Peru's Machu Picchu after he waited almost seven months to visit.
Jesse Takayama, 26, had bought himself a ticket to see the world heritage site but it closed because of the coronavirus.
But now he's finally been able to cross it off his bucket list. After the boxing instructor sent a special request, he was granted access to the site and became the first and only tourist to visit - because they haven't properly reopened yet.
Jesse, from Japan, arrived in Aguas Calientes - the place most people go to in order to begin the Machu Picchu expeditions - on 14 March. He had his entry ticket for the attraction on 16 March.
After the Peruvian government closed the site, Jesse ended up renting a small room and became a local - not bad for someone who only planned to stay in Peru for a few days.
Speaking to CNN, a very grateful Jesse said: "I go to run every morning and I could see Machu Picchu afar in distance.
"I thought I would never make it to Machu Picchu as I was expecting it won't open within this year. But I was OK with it because I had a great time here."
More Like ThisMore Like This
Taking to Instagram, Jesse added: "The first person on Earth who went to Machu Picchu since the lockdown is meeeeeee."
He then added: "I thought that I wouldn't be able to go, but thanks to all of you who pleaded with the mayor and the government, I was given this super special opportunity."
Minister of Culture Alejandro Neyra said during a virtual press conference on Monday (12 October): "He had come to Peru with the dream of being able to enter.
"The Japanese citizen has entered together with our head of the park so that he can do this before returning to his country."
Jesse will leave Peru for Japan on 16 October so he managed to fit in the expedition just in time. But it's going to be a bittersweet goodbye to all the locals with whom he's become friends over the months he's been stranded there.
He told CNN: "I will definitely cry. These seven months have been very special to me. I have discovered a new part of me."
The Peru tourist spot is expected to reopen at a reduced capacity next month but no exact date has been give just yet.
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/jessekatayama