Stouts in the Sacred Valley
Trip Start Mar 07, 2013
11Trip End Mar 18, 2013
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Where I stayed
Trey was happy to find another pound cake on the breakfast buffet. They had to bring out another one before he was done.
Today we toured the sacred valley and continue onto machu picchu tomorrow. We had to get down to 20lbs of bags each because that is all that is allowed on the train to machu pichu. So we have a couple days of clothes and a little cash. Some items previously thought important are now in storage and we will have to figure out a way to get by until we are back in cusco 3 days.
The Sacred Valley of the Incas is about 1 hour drive from Cusco. It was the main source of agriculture for the people living in Cusco. It is a long flat plain, with steep mountains on either side with the Urubamba River flowing in center of the Valley. It is also the entrance to the lower jungle areas and Machu Picchu.
Our first stop was Pisac. The fortress of Pisac on top of the hill behind the village still looks over the city as it did in Incan times. The ruins are large and have both a religious as protective function. Inca Terracing goes from the town up to the forteress.
We had a lunch buffet in Urubamba, the largest village in the valley.
Next was Ollantaytambo, where we will spend the night and board the train to Machu Picchu in the morning. Ollantaytambo is most famous as the place where the Inca King, Manco Inca was able to defeat the Spanish in 1536. The only time they were defeated while conquering the Incan empire. He managed to lure the Spanish into an ambush using the high steepness of the site itself and the ability of the Inca to flood the valley below the site where the Urubamba River connects with a smaller river.
Ollantaytambo is at the western end of the Sacred Valley. The town was built in Inca times and they say is the best surviving example of Inca town planning.
The town is located around several plazas with the last one at the foot of the impressive site of temple to the sun god. It is very steep with multiple large staircases leading up to a impressive set of Granite walls.
The only mishap of the day was my new hat was lost. It served me well in it's short life. The sun was out today and I was so sweaty that I took it off when we got back the van. We were the only group staying here, the rest were heading back to cusco and my hat went with them.
I was thinking if getting a ball cap this time but not sure if I want a hat that says Ollantaytambo. I will figure something out...