TOUR

SACRED VALLEY, MACHU PICCHU & CUSCO: 4D3N

DAYS

4 DAYS 3 NIGHTS

PRICES

$ 750 person
$ 950 person

UBICACIÓN

CUSCO

SACRED VALLEY, MACHU PICCHU & CUSCO: 4D3N

Type: Classic cultural

Visit Inca ceremonial religious and administrative sites, military stations and astronomical observatories. Remote short Inca Trails, hiking adventures and historical tours explorations, nature and different ecosystems, flora and fauna.

The Inca Civilization, the Great Empire:These people were descendants of the Sun in the Cuzco area, where the legendary first Sapa Inca, Manco Capac, founded the Kingdom of Cuzco around 1200. Under the leadership of the descendants of Manco Capac, the Inca state grew to absorb other Andean communities. In 1442, under the command of Patchacutec, who founded the Inca Empire “Tawantinsuyu”, the Incas began a far-reaching expansion, which became the largest empire in pre-Columbian America.

Includes:  We Provide and Include: Licensed, Bilingual, history, naturalist Tour Guides- Emergency phone, Archaelogical sites Tours Entrance and Site Fees,Trains round trip,Buses up and down,Hikes Inca trails around machu Picchu /Transfers from Cusco &  optional assistance and Confirmation- Additional Tour Arrangements

PACKAGE DETAILS

DAY 1 - Sacred Valley

We pick you up at the airport and after an invigorating cup of coca tea, we travel to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. We will visit an Alpaca and Llama breeding and fiber-producing farm to see aspects of the carding, spinning and weaving process. Later we visit a traditional farm and an Indian market. Then we will go to the Inca outpost built in the 1200s for a nice tour and hike.

Beginning in 1200, the quest for increased territory and natural resources brought the Inca Empire into the Sacred Valley and the jungles of Cusco and Madre de Dios, and that is where Pisac was built. Pisac served as an Inca out post with and administrative, military and astronomical. This was a strategic location to control and conquer other ethnic groups. From here expansion continued northward to where Ollantaytambo is now. Here on the mountain were some of the best corn and crops in the World. There are impressive stone structures remaining and the site is connected by Inca roads. When you visit, you can hike to the cemetery where skulls of puma and religious icons have been found. Hiking further to the religious area you will see a beautiful stone temple carve of fine masonry. The temples were dedicated to the sun, the moon, and the star deities. They are all aligned to the astronomical and solar events.

We have a typical lunch in the Valley and in the afternoon we will visit the Inca archaeological site of Ollantaytambo, an Inca fortress and remains that were built in the early 1400s.

During the Inca expansion in the 1400s, Ollantaytambo was a fortified city, a fortified fortress, and “Tambo” or administrative center. The stone was quarried across the river and the river itself was a means to carry all the material from across the valley to the site, where materials could then be carried using rollers,rumps and man power. Using mostly huge pink or red perfidious granite rock, weighing 20-80 tons, they carved with extraordinary precision. Here the Incas constructed temples dedicated to the sun and to Mother Earth or Pachamama. This site is aligned to the winter and summer Solstices and to the spring and autumn equinox. This was one of the last refuges for the Incas before they fled to the jungle to regroup, recover, and fight the Spanish forces again. Ollantaytambo was used for administrative purposes, also as a religious retreat and military station. It was a strategic location between three valleys connected to important sites by Inca roads. The Sacred Valley was important because during the expansion of the Inca towards the sacred valley it was the main source of sustenance for the nobility. An important agricultural location, it was used to acclimate crops and fruit trees from the high and the low jungles. Manco Inca also fought to protect territory from the Spanish forces that had several battle ships in the area. Construction never was finished likely because the Inca civil war interfered and then the Spanish forces conquered the Inca in 1536.

All these beautiful temples occupied by the religios groups,as well other buildings by royalty, nobility and important people and their entourages. These were religious retreats,palaces, plazas, ceremonial places, astronomical observatories and they also served as military stations, store houses, granaries, and terraces for farming, all connected by Inca roads. Construction included existing rock, the small valley itself, and the mountain. Fine masonry and well carved, well-polished stonework, all assembled without mortar. The work was done by laborers from elsewhere who used ramps rollers, and manpower.

After our hike and tour we go to our hotel in the valley only 20 minutes away and have rest of the afternoon free, then dinner is at the hotel. There is a great opportunity to see the wildlife near the hotel.  We may see the great thrush “Turdus Furcater” and the Sparkling violet ear  “Colibri Coruscans” hummingbird and some flora such as a bromeliaceae called Maquey or “Furcraea Andina” and the Andean bush called Chillca or “Bacharis Latifolia”. Later there is an optional visit to a local pottery workshop and kiln.

DAY 2 - Machu Picchu

After breakfast we will ride the train for an hour and a half to the town of Aguas Calientes in the vicinity of Machu Picchu. We go to the hotel to freshen up and then up the mountain by bus to Inca city of Machu Picchu. This is the Inca palace of Pachacutec King who ruled there from 1438-1471, according to John Rowe, 1990. It is thought that during the expansion of the Inca Empire it was a site of natural resources and a military presence in the Antisuyo region, with access to coca plantations and abundant natural resources, coming from the two different ecosystems of the tropical forest of Cusco and experimental farming fields. There were also and astronomical and religious retreats here. We will take two hours for a thorough tour of the sanctuary,

Machu Picchu is situated at the beginning, or “eye brow”, of the cloud forest. This allowed access to different altitudes, each with unique ecological conditions. The crops found at Machu Picchu include different varieties of corn, chilies, quinoa, tomatoes, trees, potatoes, suggesting that this was a good place to acclimate and domesticate species from the high and low jungles that later would be successfully introduced into the hanging valleys and elsewhere.

This small valley was suitable for the building of temples and astronomical observatories.,plazas, streets, utilitarian and functional buildings,

ceremonial places, granaries, store houses and terraces for agriculture, Inca roads.

By analysis of soil, seeds, wood, and bones, Carbon Dating situates Incas in the area during the mid-1400s to mid-1500s. Machu Picchu was built by the Inca number 9 who named it “Pachacutek” or “Cusi Yupanqui”. Throughout the site, there is fine masonry and beautiful stonework, all of which is done without mortar. Construction used outside sources for laborers and two large granite quarries nearby. It is believed that the site was occupied by royalty and dignitaries, and that it was visited by the Inca and his entourage or royal court. Even though it was never quite completed, local scholars and historians believe that within a mere 100 years Machu Picchu was built, inhabited, and abandoned.

Several roads connect to bring pilgrims and essential supplies to Machu Picchu, the site of temples and astronomical observatories dedicated to the sun, moon, stars, the universe, the mother earth “Pachamama” and the creator “Wiracocha”.

Later in the afternoon there is free time in Machu Picchu for a hike on the original Inca Trail to The Sun Gate that will take about 2hours hike and will offer incredible views of Machu Picchu and good opportunities to see the local orchids such as the Bamboo orchid “Sobralia Dicotoma” and the “Masdevalia Vietachina” and the native bromeliad “Puya Densiflora” and several species of birds, a Hummingbird called Sparkling violet ear “Colibri Coruscans” and some flora such a bromeliacea called Maquey “Furcraea Andina” and the Andean bush called Chillca “Bacharis Latifolia”. Later, an optional visit to a local pottery workshop and kiln.

DAY 3 - Machu Picchu

Today we go back to further explore Machu Picchu.  Afterwards we will have the choice to hike and climb one of the other Sacred Mountains in Machu Picchu. The optional hikes for today are the mountain called Huayna Picchu, the young mountain, for about 2 hours and 30 minutes round trip, or go to the mountain called Machu Picchu, the old mountain, about a 3-hour round trip.  In this hike you will see the beautiful granite stonework from the Inca times. In theses hikes we will have different views of Machu Picchu from above. There is abundant birdlife including many hummingbirds such as the giant “Patagonia Gigas”, the Sparkling Violet Ear “Colibri Coluscans”, the Bronzy Hummingbird, Tyrian Metaltail, Long-Tailed Sylph, and others. In the Troglodytae Family of Wrens we see the Inca Wren and “Thryothorus Eisenmonni”. There are over 450 varieties catalogued within the Machu Picchu Park, 100 of them along the way from the ruins to river range. There is also the Aplomado Falcon “Falco Femoralis”, Finches, Tyrannulets, the Great Thrush, Flower Piercers, Tanagers, Seedeaters, Stripe-Headed Brush Finch, Kestrels, Siskins and Fly-Catchers, Tangaras, and others.

The flora includes many species of Bromeliads “Puya Densiflora”, Passiflora, Begonias, Fuchsias, and numerous Compositae. There are countless numbers of Orchids including varieties of Wiñay Wayna “Epidendrum Secundum”, many members of the Solanaceae, Myrtaceae, Scrophularias, and more.
DAY 4 - Cusco

During the morning, after a good breakfast we shall start the City Tour to see part of the capital of the Inca Empire. We will visit several religious retreats and sanctuaries dating from Inca times. The Temple of Koricancha “The Temple of Gold” was the center of the Inca religion as the formal temple of the Sun it figures among the different temples that were dedicated to various gods of the Inca religion.

Koricancha was the main temple built in the 1200s and rebuilt in the 1400s by Pachacutec, the 9th Inca leader.  Similar to the Greek Parthenon, this is where all deities were. Just as Mecca is sacred to Muslims, Koricancha was sacred to the Incas who all visited at least once in a lifetime. The extraordinary masonry is an impressive example of Inca engineering and architecture: stones were cut precisely, assembled with extremely narrow joints, and needing no mortar. It is thought that there were temples dedicated to the sun, moon, stars, and rainbows, that this is where solar priests and priestesses lived. This ceremonial site held Inca religious idols and idols of people that they had conquered. The stone for this building came from nearby quarries. The stone is varied and includes andesite, basal diorite and red perfidious granite, volcanic and metamorphic rock. The shape, the angles and the polishing were masterful. Here the Inca solar priest conducted rituals and high ceremonies dedicated to gods and sun worship. Religious artifacts have been found here. Much of the temples were cover with gold, silver, and precious stones positioned in ways relevant to solar and astronomical events. Only people with status, nobility or royalty were permitted to visit here. In 1540 Dominicans built a monastery and convent on the using the Inca ruins and imposed Christianity. Although the Inca were forced out, today you can see the marvelous and amazing work of the Incas.

 We will visit the fortress of Saqsayhuaman, which was a militar, ceremonial, religious and astronomical site.

Saqsayhuaman was built with limestone brought from nearby quarries using rollers, ropes, ramps, and manpower. The stone was carved very precisely and required no mortar. This is one of the best examples of Inca masonry. The stones vary in size and they weigh between 20 and 80 tons. Excavations here yielded human remains, mummies, religious paraphernalia, and statuettes of idols that symbolize deities, men, and women. This is where, on June 21st , the Winter Solstice captures the first rays of the sun and from here the rays continue all the way to the imperial city of Cusco, forming the sacred figure of the Solar Puma. Saqsayhuam was the head of the puma and considered to be a sacred animal. Saqsayhuaman has three angled walls that form a zig zag shape. Garcilazo de la Vega, a mixed race Inca writer from the 1600s, claimed there were three towers at the top of the slope with rectangular, square, and circular shapes (temple of the sun) that reached a height of 15 meters and had various uses. At Saqsayhuaman the Incas defended and fought Spanish forces for control of the Inca capital during the Conquest of Cusco. Under the leadership of Manco Inca, despite fighting with great fury and energy against the invading Spanish forces in 1534, this marked the beginning of the collapse of the Inca Empire. The battles continued to the Sacred Valley and Ollantaytambo before the Incas retreated to the rain forest in Vilcabamba where they remained for 36 years until the last Inca was captured in 1572.

We will visit several shrines, or huacas such as  “Qenqo”, which were ceremonial and ritualistic places and we will see a section of an original Inca trail that was part of the network of routes called “Capac Ñan” in Cusco, the Capital of the Inca Empire. Here there will also some good opportunities to see the Giant Hummingbird “Patagonia Gigas”, the Rufus-Collared sparrow “Zonotrichia Capensis”, the native tree called Queoña “Polilepis sp” and the Chachacomo “Scallonia recinosa” all from pre-Colombian times and found in the Andes.

Also in this area are the Great Thrush, Flower Piercers, Tanagers, Seedeaters, Stripe-Headed Brush Finch, Kestrels, Siskins, Fly-catchers, Tangaras, and more.
The flora includes many species of Bromeliads “Puya Densiflora”, Passiflora, Begonias, Fuchsias, and numerous Compositae. There are countless numbers of Orchids including varieties of Wiñay Wayna “Epidendrum Secundum”, many of the Solanaceae, Myrtaceae, Scrophularias, and moreNote: We can recommend the best and comfortable hotels for you or we can book the hotel for you.

$ 750  / Person

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