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The Sacred Valley of the Incas
Basic information and hotels
The Sacred Valley of the Incas and the Urubamba are used inter-changeably to describe the valley that runs from east of Pisac to Ollantaytambo at the western end of the Valley. It is a narrow, winding valley with spectacular snow capped peaks constantly in view.
In the words of The Rough Guide to Peru: ”It’s a steep-sided river valley that opens out into a still narrow but fertile alluvial plain which was exploited agriculturally by the Incas. Even within 30km or so of the valley, there are several microclimates allowing specializations in different fruits, maize’s and other important local plants. Standing guard over the two extremes of the Sacred Valley, are the ancient Inca citadels of Pisac and Ollantaytambo.”
At the eastern end of the valley is Pisac. Best know for its Sunday market, there are now smaller markets on Tuesday and Thursdays. There is also an impressive set of ruins perched on the mountainside overlooking the valley.
Mid-valley are the village of Yucay and the small town of Urubamba, where most of the lodging of the valley is located.
Ollantaytambo, at the end of the valley, is built on the foundations of an old Inca town and has another impressive set of ruins. It also has the train station serving the valley.