Julie Peru 8 Comments

Tim and I spent three days touring the Sacred Valley of Peru. This area is filled with historical Incan sites, stunning landscapes, quaint villages, and colorful, friendly people. Here are some of our favorite photos from these three days.


Julie at Sacsaywaman

Tim is standing in front of the Incan fortress of Sacsaywaman. It was the site of a 10 month battle between the Spanish and the Incans in the 1500’s that the Spanish eventually won.

What is so impressive about Sacsaywaman is how the gigantic stones were carved so perfectly by the Incas and then put together like a jigsaw puzzle. These stones are enormous, some being much taller than Tim, with the largest stone weighing more than 126 tons! How did the Inca, having only the technology of copper and stone tools, carve and fit these gigantic rocks together so perfectly?

Tim at Sacsaywaman

Sacsaywaman Peru

The pronunciation of Sacsaywaman is almost identical to “sexy woman,” which of course was great joke material for Tim.

Overlooking Cusco from Sacsaywaman

Overlooking Cusco Peru

From Sacsaywaman we had great views over the city of Cusco. In the bottom of the photo is the Plaza de Armas, the main square in the center of town.


Tim and I spent several nights in a hotel in Cusco within walking distance of the Plaza de Armas.  This was a great place for shopping and dining. Our favorite place to eat in Cusco was Cicciolina’s, which is located a few blocks from the Plaza. Tim and I ate here twice and they serve the very best pisco sours.

Plaza de Armas Cusco

Rumi Punku Hotel

Walking through Cusco

Peruvian Woman


Weaving Lesson in Chinchero

Chinchero Weaving Lesson


Tim and I received a one hour lesson in Chinchero about weaving. We were served coca leaf tea, sat on benches covered in alpaca fur, and listened while our guide, who spoke surprisingly good English, taught us all about the process of making and dying wool yarn.

Weaving Lesson


The women were very enthusiastic about showing us their crafts. We, of course, felt obligated to make a purchase. They had a huge amount of alpaca blankets, woven bags, and hats and gloves to choose from.


This lady, who also taught us about weaving, loved seeing our kids’ toys. Tim and I started traveling with Tyler’s R2-D2 and Kara’s Rainbow Dash during our first trip to Europe in 2008. We have been taking pictures of these toys and posting them online as we travel so Tyler and Kara could follow us (and their toys) as we visited important places. Anyway, this lady offered to have her photo taken with R2-D2 and Rainbow Dash. She was giggling and so cute. She had no idea who R2-D2 was or anything about the movie “Star Wars.” This may be one of the neatest photos with the kids’ toys yet.

Peru Travel Guide

Driving to Ollantaytambo



As we drove from Chinchero to Ollantaytambo we passed by this souvenir stand with an amazing view over the Urabamba Valley. This part of Peru is gorgeous.

Beautiful Peru



Tim and I stayed in Ollantaytambo for one night before catching the train the Machu Picchu. Ollantaytambo was our favorite town in Peru. It is a quaint, unassuming town at the foot of the mountains and located on the Urabamba River. Ollantaytambo is the last town on the way to Machu Picchu from Cucso, and most people skip right over this place on their quick day trip from Cusco. It is worth spending at least one night here. And “Ollantaytambo” is just the best name ever!

Market in Ollantaytambo


Tim and I ascended hundreds of steps to the top of the fortress.  We had a great time exploring, taking pictures, and overlooking Ollantaytambo.

More Information for Your Trip to Peru

MACHU PICCHU: Explore Machu Picchu in photos and learn what it is like to hike to Machu Picchu in one day (a great option for those short on time but still want to enter Machu Picchu through the Sun Gate).

ADVENTURES IN PERU: Venture into the Amazon, go mountain biking near Ollantaytambo, and go rock climbing and zip lining in the Urabamba River Valley.

PERU ITINERARY: In this 10 Day Peru Itinerary, visit Cusco, walk the one day Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, explore Ollantaytambo and the Urabamba River Valley, and journey into the Amazon. It’s a trip of a lifetime!

TRAVEL AROUND THE WORLD: Learn more how to plan a trip around the world in our Around the World Travel Guide. You can also read our 13 Month Around the World Itinerary and a recap about our around the world trip.

Are you planning a trip to Peru? Read all of our articles about Peru in our Peru Travel Guide.


Sacred Valley of Peru in Pictures


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Comments 8

  1. Avatar for Jenny Benoist
    1. Avatar for Julie Post
  2. Avatar for Tara Jansen
    Tara Jansen

    Hi Julie,
    We are going to Peru with our family this summer. We love your itinerary. We are looking for the a weaving class in Chinchero like you did. I cannot find it on line though? Could you give me some tips on how to find this opportunity? Many thanks!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Our driver, who we hired through our hotel, knew about the class and took us there. Maybe you could contact the hotel and ask them for details? It’s the Rumi Punku Hotel in Cusco. Cheers, Julie

  3. Avatar for Marcus

    Incredible guys, I’m currently planning my trip to Peru this summer and this helps tons of how to enjoy the Sacred Valley, thank you! One big question, have you had the chance to go to the Rainbow Mountain? I really want to go but read that it’s pretty tough. I found this alternative trek there, to another spot but wanted to know if you’ve heard of it too? I just leave you the link I found on TripAdvisor https://exploorperu.com/blogs/exploor-peru-travel-blog/discover-the-best-route-to-the-famous-rainbow-mountains-of-peru. Would be great to hear from you!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      We have not gone to Rainbow Mountain. Our trip to Peru was in April/May 2012 (yikes…time flies!!). Honestly, I do not know anything about the trek to Rainbow Mountain other than the info you just provided. Having also seen photos of it in recent years, it’s a place we would love to visit. I’d be inclined to do the alternative trek written in this post, simply because we prefer to do things without crowds of people. Peru is amazing…we are actually talking about returning this summer. The mountains and the landscapes and the people are wonderful. Have a great time! You will make tons of great memories. Cheers, Julie

      1. Avatar for Marcus

        Thanks for the response Julie and appreciate your feedback! I finally booked my trip yesterday for the alternative trek as it seems more convenient and less touristic as you say. Maybe you have to chance to enjoy this trek too in case you have a comeback. I cross my fingers that all will be fine when I go!

        1. Avatar for Julie Post

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