The Valley of the Urubamba

The Sacred Valley has become one of the most important tourist centers of the country. As well as having a unique historical wealth, the Urubamba region offers tourists infinite possibilities of distraction: walks, thermal baths, travel in rafts or kayaks by the River, flights in paragliding or hang-gliding, horseback riding, mountain climbing, etc. Tourism programmes participatory, inviting for example the traveler to work on a platform or collect salt from a salt industry have been developed in recent years. Also, two of the most important craft markets of Cusco Sacred Valley houses: Pisac and Chinchero.

Despite the fact that in recent years has significantly increased tourism in the area, since it has an importante-razonable range of accommodation and restaurants, the Valley has preserved its charming natural peace.

Geographic location
Yucay, was the name with which the incas named this fertile valley, one of the most fertile of the Peru, its sacred Valley. They were land of the inca and their descendants. Later they were possessions recognized by the Spanish through the Royal grants that were awarded to the Inca nobility. As a testimony of that time has been the Palace of Sayri Tupac, precisely in the town of Yucay.

The Sacred Valley of the Incas stretches along the Vilcanota river (the same downstream takes its name from Urubamba or Willcamayu). It covers the area between the towns of Pisac and Ollantaytambo.

It is possible to access it through two paved roads: the first and most used is that part of the Cusco northward and leads via Chinchero (28 Kms...), to the town of Urubamba (57 km).

A second track part of the Cusco with Pisac (32 kms.) northeast towards and then follows the course of the Vilcanota river until the locality of Calca (50 kms.) in the heart of the Valley. The first route is the busiest since it is in a better position.

In the Valley there is a succession of picturesque villages (some with splendid colonial churches), platforms and other archaeological remains; Thus, there are also fertile soils of the world most famous corn. Its exceptional climate makes this Valley a destination must for all who visit Cuzco.

Tourist activities include mountain climbing, practiced in the snowy Chicón \Vtkav Willca (also known as Puma Bodíón or Veronica), Pitusiray, Sawasiray, Terijway and Sunchobamba (all summits of the cordillera de Vilcanota with more than 5000 meters of height); hiking or trekking; canoeing (in the Pisac/Calca/Huaran/Ollantaytambo sections); or horseback riding and mountain biking. There are numerous hotels and restaurants of typical food in the villages of the Valley.

It is recommended to spend the night in one.

Its altitude is 2,800 meters above sea level, which gives it a mild climate. As in the lands located at this point, its climate is marked by two seasons: rainy season and drought. The wet season occurs between the months of November to April. Time which can unleash a downpour in seconds and, unfortunately, not always enjoys of a blue sky. But rainy season also has its advantages, as the hills are covered in bright green and temperatures tend to be temperate.

During the drought period, the colors of the sky are bright, but the air is so dry that the skin looks to shatter. The night is usually very cold and can freeze in the early morning. The starry sky is a true spectacle during this season. The Sacred Valley is climatically speaking, an ideal place. Recognised the ancient Peruvians who came here to cure some diseases. Despite high temperatures and be an area full of vegetation, Valley is free of mosquitoes by the altitude where it is located. In addition, it is difficult to suffocate because he always blows a cool breeze.

The way
If one opts to go by car, will serve as reference know that leaving by the Saphi street you will find the tap San Carlos, where you can stock up on gasoline and check the status of your car with comfort.

Following the route you will arrive at San Cristobal and, if you have a little time, you can make a stop at the Church and visit to one of the most popular protective saints of Cusco. The road to the Sacred Valley is the same which leads to Sacsayhuaman, so if you want and the weather permits you can visit the ruins of that complex: Quenco, Puca Pucara and Tambomachay.

The impressive thing about the way is that output involves climbing up the hills that dominate the Cusco, which allows to enjoy impressive views of the city, especially in the evening or at night. If the time and the light are favorable, you can take splendid pictures. From these points it is possible to observe closely the structure of the city. When the days are clear, the contrast between the blue sky and the red roofs is spectacular.

On the trail of eucalyptus
The road is nice, but with numerous curves. All the way, the eucalyptus and the brooms accompany the traveler. Four minutes from Tambomachay is Corao open and the viewpoint from which looks over the Valley. A craft fair is carries out here every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

The Taray lookout
It is the first point from where you can really see Valley. Its landscape, as it is customary in Cuzco, surprise the traveler, because after long curves and ascents, suddenly the hills open and the Valley is shown in their entirety. They run down, Urubamba or Vilcanota river waters. From here you can take beautiful photos. It is common to find some children look forward to the arrival of tourists to offer "that they themselves produce" and catalogues which are extremely proud. The road continues, and if you're lucky, you may see the Pitusiray and Huancalle mountains.

The Ñusta sinuses
The first visiting after lowering the hills and crossing Corao and Taray is Pisac. Average slope Gets a fantastic view of the town. We advise you to stop it because from here you can take good pictures and observe the structure of the people if you have time and particular car. On the left side of Pisac, at the foot of the mountains, you can see the so-called "breasts of the Ñusta", four rows of terraces that simulate the breasts of a woman. As they say, this could have been a tribute to fertility. While these platforms are as close to the people, they have remained intact to the present day.

URUBAMBA (2871 m)
Village of Inca origin 76 KMS... (1 h 15 min.) Cusco via Pisac, and 57 Kms... (45 min.) by Chinchero. Located in the very heart of the Urubamba Valley, is surrounded by beautiful landscapes, featuring the nevado Chicón and countryside. He was one of the main agricultural centers of the Inca Empire. A colonial church is located in the square. It has several hotels, picanterías and rustic restaurants.

original source: cusco_peru.org

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