- On March 14, Katayama arrived in Aguas Calientes, where most tourists start their expeditions to Machu Picchu.
- Unfortunately, the Peruvian government decided to close the site that day to keep visitors safe.
- Stranded in Peru, Katayama was forced to rent a small room in Aguas Calientes.
- He has only been staying in the town as border closures prevented him from visiting other countries in South America.
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- Katayama, a boxing instructor back home, started teaching boxing to the local children in his spare time.
- Aside from winning some friends among the locals, he also visited local attractions such as the Putucusi Mountain and the Calientes Waterfalls.
- “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,” he was quoted as saying.
- A local tour company called Andean Roots Peru and the national Ministry of Culture came to his rescue.
- Katayama was given special permission to enter the site and he got to do it free from the usual crowd.
- He was also accompanied by site chief Jose Bastante and two photographers to document the experience.
- Katayama revealed how it all happened in an Instagram post, writing, “I thought I never make it (to Machu Picchu) but everyone asked the government and the town and they gave me super special permission.” He added: “Peruvians are soooo kind. Thank you soooo much!”
- Katayama is set to return to Japan on Oct. 16.