Day 7 – Sacred Valley (Ollantaytambo and Chinchera)

Our hotel (Casa Andina Private Collection) in Urubamba was a big surprise! Set in lush and beautiful gardens at the foot of a mountain constructed in chalet style with tile roof – beautiful!

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We set off in the morning, in our first drizzle, for the ruins of an Incan Emporer at Ollantaytambo. What a magnificent site! We were some of the first tourists there and gradually climbed the steep stone steps ,to the sun temple and with fantastic views over the entire site. The intricacy, precision and fine work of those Incan engineers is absolutely mind-boggling – and all without the use of machinery, metal blades, cranes, etc. Our mascot dog (named Trooper by Nicole) stayed with us the entire time.

From there we headed into the hills to Chinchero where our first stop was at a small village school. The children were adorable and ranged in ages from 2-8 (it also serves as a day care). They sang for us and kindly let us take their photos. The school is supported, in part, by Gate 1 Travel who give a percentage of our tour price.

Then on to a weaving cooperative where we were also served a delicious lunch followed by a demonstration of the washing, dyeing, spinning, and weaving process. The host ladies were extremely gracious and the setting was lovely. Oh! And did I mention that Guinea Pig can frequently be found on the menu?

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