The Sacred Valley - Part two.

A Boleta Touristica.Rather than explore all the sights around Cusco in our vans, we decided to stay put at Quinta Lala camp site and organise the tours we wanted through one of the many tour agencies in town.

Our second mini-bus tour was to Awana Kancha, Pisac, Tambo Machay and Qenko. We left at 09:00 and returned at about 17:00.

If you want to know about each site in detail, that is what Lonely Planet and the Internet are for.

Awana Kancha.

Awana Kancha is a free camelid "petting zoo", with a long stretch of open enclosures exhibiting camelids from the four groups in South America, all of which are found in Peru. The alpaca suri was the most unusual (top right) with silky matted strands of wool hanging down to the ground. Alpacas (bottom right) and llamas (top left, right side) are domestic camelids. Vicunas (top left, left side) and guanacos (bottom left) are wild camelids. Unfortunately, guanacos are on the endangered list. At the end of the close-up petting and feeding experience was one of the best high quality handicraft boutiques in Peru, with an array of spectacular products made from the ultra-soft wool of these exquisite animals. Ann became enamored with an elaborate wall-hanging for a mere $1600USA!


The town of Pisac is well known in Peru for its colorful Sunday market, a popular place for both locals and tourists. One of the highlights of the day was attending the 11:00 church service conducted in the regional Quechua language. Natives dress in ceremonial regalia, and the mayor of the town participates in the procession at the end of the service. On this particular day, a wedding was also taking place. The market met the girls' expectations, each purchasing an assortment of Peruvian products.

Tastes like chicken.

Pisac's Inca ruins spreads out over an enormous area a few kilometers away from the market town of the same name. Endless irrigation terraces lead up to an Inca citadel with plunging gorges on either side. A full day is required to thoroughly explore the entire site, including the largest known Inca cemetery with thousands of honeycombed tombs built into the dramatic cliff-side. Incas were buried in the fetal position, with precious jewelry and their hands clasped in prayer to the Gods.

Tambo Machay.

Tambo Machay is also known as "bath of the Inca" as it was built as a ceremonial bath above a natural spring. waterflow can be seen on the bottom left.

Qenko and Puka Pukara were two other sites also visited on this day, but we were getting tired and ruined-out, choosing to save our ruin-exploring energy for Machu Picchu in a few days. The two ruins were still worth a quick look nevertheless. We got Geronimo our driver home before dark!

Judy Bartos.

Home - This page last changed on 2006-06-19.