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Located at the far end of the valley, the road stops here. From here you can only continue to Machu Picchu by train.
Unfortunately many only pass through Ollantaytambo via the train station. But if you take the full day tour from Cuzco on a Sunday, Tuesday or Thursday that includes the Pisac Indian Market, you will also visit the town and archaeological site.
The road from the valley climbs up a series of switchbacks and then along a long wall with narrow streets intersecting it. Since the long wall inclines towards the road and the Inca practice was to incline walls inward, it has been deduced that the original Inca road, much narrower than now, ran through a succession of buildings. The entry into Ollantaytambo is in itself interesting.
There is a set of terraces leading up the mountainside and from the summit there is an impressive view of the valley. It is said that Manco Inca's warriors successfully defended the terraces against Pizarro in 1536 and subsequently enclosed the site and the valley with a defensive wall.
In the archaeological site is the Bano de la Musta (bath of the princess) and the temple started by Pachacuti using Colla Indians from Lake Titicaca who are said to have deserted halfway through, accounting for many unfinished blocks laying about.
|On the mountain face are small ruins known as
Inca Misanca believed to have been a small temple or observatory, and a series of seats
and niches have been carved out of the cliff. There is also an irrigation system cut out
of the sheer rock face.