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Exploring Amazon Tours and Andean Treks Since 2007

IMMERSE IN THE FAMED SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS

EXPLORE THE BEST ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND UNIQUE SCENARIOS OF THE SACRED VALLEY

The Sacred Valley is a fertile corridor that follows a winding course just northwest of Cusco all the way to Machu Picchu. Often considered the spiritual and commercial heart of the Inca Empire, it progresses into a slender alluvial plain where all kinds of crops and fruit trees flourish in the temperate valley floor climate. North of Ollantaytambo and onward to Machu Picchu, the valley becomes subtropical and the Urubamba River transforms into a swirling torrent, making further road access impossible. You can, however, continue to Machu Picchu on foot or by train.

The valley is tightly hemmed in by great folds of the Andes, some stark and bald and some crowned by snow or glaciers. Weaving communities cling to the creases of the foothills, while ruined Inca citadels sit high on the mountainsides, as if keeping watch.

Many visitors think of the Sacred Valley as a transit point between Cusco and Machu Picchu. But, if you can spare the time, there’s a welter of activities and points of interest here. You’ll find a glut of archaeological sites, one of Peru’s trend-setting restaurants, a range of treks beyond the Inca Trail and numerous adventure activities.

Písac, a town at the eastern mouth of the Sacred Valley, is popular with visitors, who flock to its artisan craft market. Among its handmade wares are silky-soft baby alpaca shawls and scarves. Písac then transmutes into a food and produce market on Sundays, where locals from surrounding villages join the throngs of out-of-towners.

SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS

WHAT TO DO IN THE SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS

The Sacred Valley is your start point for the classic Inca Trail, but that’s not the only hiking route leading to Machu Picchu. There are several other options, most involving camping and taking a minimum of three days. There’s even a day-walk option called Short Inca Trail KM 104: ideal if you’re short on time or don’t wish to undertake a multi-day trek.

Above all the business, Písac’s citadel and a sun temple stand on a mountain spur. These ruins display the precise stonework that’s become something of a patent for the Incas. You’ll also see astronomical observation posts and ceremonial baths fed by aqueducts.

Buried deeper into the mountains north of Cuzco, Chinchero is a Spanish colonial settlement that’s also celebrated for its Sunday-morning market. Quechua-speaking women wearing traditional manta shawls and patterned skirts seem to run the place, selling produce and craftwork. Quieter than Písac, Chinchero also bears some Inca remnants, such as a stone throne and terracing.

The town of Ollantaytambo has the valley’s gold-star fortress. It rears up like a granite titan at the end of the paved road between Cuzco and the Sacred Valley, dominating the town, which was once an important administrative hub for the Incas. Today its layout and remaining Inca walls give you the closest approximation of what an Inca town must have looked like five centuries ago.

Moray is made up of three swirls of seven terraces burrowing into the earth like vortexes. They’re thought to have been a latter-day laboratory for growing crops in different microclimates. Our Tour Leaders will explain you more about Moray’s allure and the lesser-known Inca sites of the Sacred Valley.

Nearby, you’ll find the still-in-use salt pans of Maras, and, overlooking Moray, one of the best restaurants in Peru ― Mil. The brainchild of chef Virgilio Martinez, owner of Central in Lima, it relies on purely local ingredients. For a more rustic yet authentic Peruvian dining experience, you can dine on a traditional pachamanca (earth-oven) meal in the Sacred Valley.

With its terrain varying from steep mountain slopes to flat fields of maize, the Sacred Valley is a good spot for mountain biking and horseback riding, no matter your ability. You can, alternatively, go white-water rafting along the surging Urubamba just past Ollantaytambo, or stand-up paddle boarding in calmer stretches of the river.

 

BEST LUXURY HOTELS IN SACRED VALLEY PERU

SACRED VALLEY LUXURY HOTELS

There is something about pausing during your time in the Andes that allows you to embrace the wonder of being there. And there is no better place to pause than in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The superior amenities of these Sacred Valley luxury hotels – such as relaxing spa services, fine dining and […]

TASTE THE BEST TYPICAL DISHES OF THE SACRED VALLEY

TRADITIONAL LOCAL FOODS

Peruvian Cuisine is one of the world’s most exciting culinary travel destinations, with an exquisite food scene in the Sacred Valley. Celebrate the essence of Andean culture through the wealth of its legendary flavors and aromas. Become intrigued by the cultural and agricultural origins of food; purple potatoes, exotic amaranth, Incan quinoa. Explore the intrinsically agrarian […]

BEST ADVENTURE ACTIVITIES IN THE SACRED VALLEY PERU

ADVENTURE ACTIVIES

Adventures in sacred valley of the incas Andean Great Treks is specialized in organizing the best adventure activities in the sacred valley. You can practice the different options of adventure sports such as rafting, mountain biking, horseback riding. The landscape and geography of the Sacred Valley of the Incas is very conducive, to do these […]

LOCAL COMMUNITY VISITS IN THE SACRED VALLEY

INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES

Sacred Valley of the incas Communities are home to the living culture of Cusco. If you want to be part of this living culture, the inhabitants of the valley are ready to share their work with you and allow you to experience their daily life for yourself. The Sacred Valley of the Incas is the […]

EXPLORE THE MARAS SALT PANS IN CUSCO

SALT MINES OF MARAS

The Salt mines of Maras are located 50 km northeast of the city of Cusco, at an altitude of 3,200 meters above sea level. Geographically, they are located in the lower part of the sub-basin and left bank of the Salineras stream, towards its mouth in the Vilcanota river, in the jurisdiction of the peasant […]

HACIENDA VISITS IN THE SACRED VALLEY

HACIENDAS VISITS

Visit the best Sacred Valley of the incas Haciendas. In Cusco since the arrival of the Spaniards, many of the wealthiest families joined the beautiful landscape of the sacred valley of the incas, where they built the most beautiful haciendas, surrounded by mountains and cornfields. The circuit of the haciendas of the sacred valley of […]

LOCAL VILLAGE MARKETS IN THE SACRED VALLEY

LOCAL VILLAGE MARKETS

Sacred Valley Markets: The Pisac & Chinchero  Explore the best Sacred Valley Markets. Peru’s beautiful Sacred Valley (El Valle Sagrado) lies between Cusco and Machu Picchu. All three travel gems add up to a perfect  for visitors to the Andean highlands. The Urubamba River runs through this narrow valley with incredibly picturesque scenery and lined […]

DISCOVER THE BEST RUINS OF THE SACRED VALLEY OF THE INCAS

INCA RUINS IN SACRED VALLEY

Exlore the best Inca Ruins of  Sacred Valley of the Incas. The Sacred Valley of the Incas was a very special place for the ancient, ancient cultures. This is due to its very special climate, which is maintained throughout the year, with temperatures from 15 to 21 C°. The Vilcanota River is the main source […]

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