Off to Peru! Group travel to Machu Picchu22 July 2012
The remainder of our tour days were chocked full of adventure. I still can't believe how much we squeezed into those few days. We drove through the Sacred Valley, visited the Pisac market, explored the Saqsaywaman archeological site, enjoyed lunch in Urubamba, and spent an evening in Ollaytantambo. Here, we visited the Sun Temple, which was once under the ownership of Incan Emperor Pachacuti. The views were absolutely beautiful and the tales of the Incas were of community and valor.
During one of the days in the Sacred Valley we visited the weaving village of Ccaccaccollo, which is part of the Plantera conservation effort led by G Adventures. The women in the village weave alpaca wool into novelties and then sell them to G Adventure tourists for a profit. The money is fed back into their communities to help them with their agriculture, livestock and other necessary professions. The women taught us about their technique, introduced us to their families and invited us to take part in the conservation project. So, I bought a big, comfy alpaca sweater to wear in my new Northwestern abode.
From Ollaytantambo, we took PeruRail to Aguas Calientes. The train ride was truly a highlight to this trip. The views were phenomenal! The train winds along the Urubamba River and leads you right into the cloud forest. The entire train is lined with windows, so you never miss the beauty.