16.10.2012 - 16.10.2012 20 °C
This shall be the day we really start using the Boleto Turistico! The alarm was set for about 6am, a quick breakfast to go prepared and off we went to the Combi stop to go all the way up to Tambomachay – about 20 minutes, steep curves, and 1.20 Soles later we arrived.
Tambomachay: First thing to do was of course eating our breakfast – on a meadow next to some lamas, a donkey, some pigs and baby lambs. And then off we went to explore the ruins. To be honest, Tambomachy is not necessarily the most exciting ruin in the Sacred Valley, but one can climb up a little hill, which is quite nice especially because most of the tourist groups don’t have time to do so and so one can not only watch them from atop, but also see their desperate faces – the place one is not allowed to go is always the most interesting
Furthermore, one can climb up a little hill behind the ruins where local farmers bring their lamas, sheep, cows, etc up to the meadow. This way it happened to us that first some lamas looked curiously around a corner and later we ended up in a flock of sheep. Also, this way leads through a the little village over to the next ruins – Puka Pukara and is a much nicer way than simply going back through the main entrance.
Puka Pukara – Q’enqo: In our guidebook it was described as an easy way from one to the next, but in fact it was not that easy after all – take a right after the little creek, past the soccer field… blablabla which creek? There are about 3 of them and which soccer field?
OK, so for other travelers my suggestion is: first of all look up the way on a map before you start – this way you get a since of direction, second read your guide book, and last don’t be shy to ask anyone along the road! Even if you probably don’t understand them, their finger will point into a certain direction
It is a beautiful walk, a little exhausting, but totally worth it! You go over some meadows, bump into several flocks of sheep, lamas, etc, the views are just amazing and you will pass by several other ruins that are barely visited by anyone.
Q’enqo – Saqsayhuaman: The walk is rather short and in-between there are several places to stop for lunch. Most of the places are super touristy and so are their prices. But as we already know that there always must be another option, we went across the street onto a little dirt road and of course we found a small restaurant – it was full of tour guides who ate there while there groups paid about 4 times as much for their lunch across the street
Also on the way one can make a little de-tour to visit Christo Blanco. But it is a little bit out of the way and we were already super tired at that point – before we even came to the largest of the ruins of that day…
Saqsayhuaman: For the day it was the largest ruins and also not only beautiful, but also fun to discover. We got lost in labyrinths in the rocks, slid down the Throne of the Inka, enjoyed wonderful views over Cusco.
But we were also more than ready to return to our Couchsurfing host and get a little rest. The way down into the city is easy to find, but as it is all steps it is a little tiring going down.
In the evening we only managed to buy our tickets for Machu Picchu at INC (Instituto Nacional de Cultura) in Avenida Cultura – this is one of the ways to get the tickets without an agency and without using internet. The lines can be a little long, but they have a few seats, where I fell asleep while Chris gentleman-like waited in line for us