The Petryk's Round-The-World Adventure 2007/2008 travel blog

....a view from up above Cuzco....

....the ruins of Sacsayhuaman....(1)

....the ruins of Sacsayhuaman....(2)

....the ruins of Sacsayhuaman....(3)

....good luck bulls....(1)

....good luck bulls....(2)

....good luck bulls....(3)

....the natural terrace of the Sacred Valley....(1)

....the natural terrace of the Sacred Valley....(2)

....a small town in the Sacred Valley....

....the Sacred Valley....(1)

....the Sacred Valley....(2)

....locals at a Sacred Valley viewpoint....

....the Sacred Valley....(3)

....the Sacred Valley....(4)

....the women who weave at CcaCcaCoillo....

....dyeing thread for weaving at CcaCcaCoillo....

....a CcaCcaCoillo elder....

....the market at CcaCcaCoillo....

....the Rio Wilcamayu in the Sacred Valley....

....the mountain terraces of Qantusraquy in the Sacred Valley near Pisac....

....the Inca ruins of Qantusraquy near Pisac....(1)

....the Inca ruins of Qantusraquy near Pisac....(2)

....the Inca ruins of Qantusraquy near Pisac....(3)

....the Inca ruins of Qantusraquy and a lone flute player....

....flowers at the Inca ruins of Qantusraquy....

....the mountain terraces of Qantusraquy with Qallaqasa high above in the Sacred...

....a view of the Sacred Valley below the Inca ruins of Qantusraquy....

....the water channels of Qantusraquy....(1)

....the water channels of Qantusraquy....(2)

....the mountain terraces of Qantusraquy with Qallaqasa high above in the Sacred...

....a local family out for a stroll at Qantusracuy....

....the Inca Cementerio Tantana Marka in the cliffs above the Sacred Valley....(1)

....the Inca Cementerio Tantana Marka in the cliffs above the Sacred Valley....(2)

....Nick and Barb overlooking the Sacred Valley at Qantusraquy....

....dancing in the streets at Pisac....(1)

....dancing in the streets at Pisac....(2)

....dancing in the streets at Pisac....(3)

....dancing in the streets at Pisac....(4)

....whatcha lookin at?....

....a baby vicuna at Alhambra Hacienda in Urubamba....

....Henry, an artisan potter at work in Urubamba....

....kids at play in Ollantaytambo...(race is of no consequence)....

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(1)

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(2)

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(3)

....a keystone from the Ollantaytambo ruins....

....a view of the town of Ollantaytambo below the ruins....

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(4)

....making our way up to the top of the Ollantaytambo ruins....

....corn fields on the other side of the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(5)

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(6)

....the Inca ruins at Ollantaytambo....(7)

....Gordon, Charlotte and Nick at Ollantaytambo....

....the Ollantaytambo Lodge....

....a narrow street in Ollantaytambo at night....

....nice night....

........for a....

............lunar....

................eclipse....


We left Cuzco behind this morning without Kike as he was a little under the weather, and who called in a favor from a friend and fellow GAP tour leader, Umberto who took us north out of town past Sacsayhuaman, a huge set of Inca ruins in the Cuzco area....the name “Sacsayhuaman” means “Satisfied Falcon” although the local guides jokingly refer to it by a mnemonic “Sexy Woman”...the stone walls remaining are only about 20% of the original structure...the Spaniards pulled down the walls and used the stone blocks to construct their homes in Cuzco...the part of the walls that remain are from the three-tiered zigzagged foundation….one of the stones is estimated to weigh over 300 tons…the Incas saw Cuzco in the shape of a puma with Sacsayhuaman as its head and the zigzagging walls as its teeth...as we traveled we saw buildings adorned with pairs of bulls as we had seen in Pucara for good luck...and came upon the start of the Sacred Valley with natural terraces formed by earthquakes long ago visible from our viewpoint...we left the main highway taking a winding country road to a women’s market at CcaCcacoillo, high in the mountains where the ancient methods of weaving and natural dyeing of threads were demonstrated. After returning to the main road, we came upon a spot in the Sacred Valley where we could see the holy river, Rio Wilcamayu, far down in the valley below us and where fields of numerous varieties of corn, the only crop grown in the valley, extend for 70 kilometres...we passed thru the colonial town of Pisac which has an ancient Inca site high above the village...the hilltop Inca citadel had a main area which was named Qantusraquy, a ceremonial centre atop the terrace called Qallaqasa and working water channels...the cliffs behind the citadel were pockmarked with caves which were used as tombs by the ancient Incas and known as Tantana Marka...there were hundreds of tombs which were emptied by “huaqueros” or grave robbers...we returned to Pisac and turned up a narrow street and almost bowled over a group of local dancers celebrating the end of a two week festival dancing their way down the street to the town square...we stopped to wander about the market in the town square and that is where Kike caught up with us, feeling somewhat better (it was something he ate the night before)...we continued on our way following the Rio Wilcamayu along the valley bottom passing thru Calca and numerous other small villages stopping at Alhambra Hacienda Restaurant in Urubamba for a wonderful buffet lunch before visiting Henry, an artisan potter at another ceramic shop...we carried on alongside the Rio Wilcamayu into Ollantaytambo, a village that was built on the ruins of an old Inca city, where we arrived late in the afternoon...the buildings foundations are those from Inca construction that existed 500 years ago...we visited the ruins of the old Inca temple and storehouses, hiking our way up some 205 steps to the upper reaches of the ruins...the Incas were amazing at how they polished these huge stones to a relatively smooth finish and fitted them together without mortar and used keystones to support walls and arches and built foundations to withstand the punishing earthquakes...we stayed the night at the Ollantaytambo Lodge after having dinner in town at the “Puppy Lounge”...and as a special treat there was a total eclipse of the moon visible and we stayed up to watch the moon go dark.....



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