Travel

GOING AROUND VALLE SAGRADO, DAY 1: SANTA TERESA, OLLANTAYTAMBO AND MARAS

After falling in love with Machu Picchu we go back to Aguas Calientes and recharge batteries with a Alpaca steak (it’s absolutely delicious) and start our way back to Hidroelectrica. Her we did a driver who’s going back home and for this reason, accepts tot age us to Santa Teresa at the fare price. In Perù it’s not easy to pay the just price or even to know which is it. Tourists are often considered as dumb and they deserve to be exploited.
At Santa Teresa we find a decent hostel with hot shower and rest, just the time to take back the energy (in 8 hours we walked, up and down, for 49 km, backpacks on) and then we go the hot springs. As in Aguas Calientes here hot water flows from the ground Afro the enjoyment of few tourists and many locals. We gift ourselves with such a treatment, a dinner at a fare price, finally, and a sleep full of Inca dreams.
Morning starts looking for a passage towards our first destination in Valle Sagrado, Ollantaytambo. For the first colectivo (fully filled mini-vans) we wait half an hour, for the second one more than one hour, but our travel companions are chatty and we are acknowledged of the last gossips.
After many hours we reach Ollantaytambo, one of the resting places (it means the rest of the warrior) all built 76 km from Cusco, then the empire capital (it means world belly). A side of the mountain is covered with terraces, aesthetical, functional or agricultural. Incas experimented a lot, the crossed coltures and implemented plants genetics. They weren’t advanced only in agricolture. They had deep knowledges of astronomy, the opposite side of the mountain is touched by the sun rays during winter solstice so that a sort of face of Viracocha God is lighted; in architecture, they built a scale model of the towns before building them and each and every one of them was shaped intentionally (Ollantaytambo is a lama with a baby lama, Machu Picchu a crocodile and a puma together figuring a condor); they store food in places were they were kept naturally fresh by the air streams flowing through the valley; they communicated thanks to shells and their sound, bearable at many meters distance; they cut huge stones with just meteoritic stones, wood and water.
Our favorite spot is the Condor temple, dig in the stone and guarded by a rock condor.
From a Ollantaytambo we squeeze in a colectivo to a Urubamba and from there a taxi (hardly negotiatied the price) to the small village of Maras. A bunch of houses sopurrounded by cultivated valleys and mountains. Wonderful. We find a place to stay in one of the 2 hostels in town, a big country house with a vegetable garden, managed by Jorge and his mum (she loves chatting). Evening flows relaxed, a typical village evening. Donkeys coming home from the fields, shops closing after sunset and us clocking a soup with garden p’s vegetables, a card game and the observation of a sky full of stars.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *