Friday, September 4, 2015

The Elusive Whitecapped Mountain

Sunday August 30, 2015

Today we started our tour at a silver factory where, similar to the alpaca factory, we learned to differentiate between real silver and fake.

Before lunch we stopped at Urubama Valley at Pisac. This city controlled the route that connected the Inca Empire with Paurcartambo in the eastern jungles. It was comprised of an impressive lay out of terraces and stonework. Also, this area houses the largest cemetery in South America. Buried in the hillside are thousands of tombs that were rummaged through by the Spanish settlers searching for gold and treasures.

We stopped for lunch in a small town and had veggie paninis and french fries. 

Continuing on, we went to Ollantaytambo. This little town is build on top of the orginial Inca foundations and shows Inca town planning. The town is divided into blocks that each have thier own entracnce leading into a central courtyard. The town sits next to Inca ruins that were used for worship. The temple sits on top of steep terracing that helped with defense. The area was still under construction when the Spanish invaded and it was never finished. 

We left from Ollantaytambo for the train station to Aquas Caliente, where Machu Picchu is situated. The two hour train ride was filled with beautiful scenery of mountains and rivers. 

We checked into our hotel and got to bed early in preparation for our 5am start to Machu Picchu!

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