Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The Pre Hikes of Ollantaytambo, Moray & Maras, Pisac Ruins

After arriving to Cuzco for the program, we travel by coach to the Sacred Valley to begin the first of three practice hikes to acclimatize to the altitude and allow the leader to assess our ability to handle this difficult hike. At the end of the three days, the leader will make a decision as to the readiness of the hikers and request that anyone who is not fit enough to complete the hike remain back in Cuzco for the four days of the trek.
***This will be at the expense of the participant so be ready, be fit and be prepared for an amazing journey***
One of the best things about these three days of practice hikes, besides the beautiful terrain and ruins, is that they really DO prepare you for the altitude and the Inca Trail! If you are in good shape this preparation will do the trick!
Remember that our leaders are very experienced and pace you well, with rest stops in between meals. Also, know that they carry a satellite phone and also carry oxygen for emergencies.

Day 2: Sacred Valley

Flight to Cuzco and Coach to the Sacred Valley/Field trip to Ollantaytambo Ruins

Breakfast at the hotel restaurant and morning flight to Cuzco.
Arrive in Cuzco and transfer by coach to the Sacred Valley with a visit to Ollantaytambo ruins.
Ollantaytambo is a town with original buildings of Inca construction where the
Inca retreated to make their last stand in the highlands against the Spanish.
Running water still flows through the town in aqueducts and the terraces above the
town still are farmed.
Lunch at a local restaurant in the town of Ollantaytambo.
Transfer to the hotel and check-in with afternoon time at leisure.
Lecture: A Brief Introduction to Peru, the Inca, and the Sacred Valley.
Dinner at the hotel restaurant.

Day 3: Sacred Valley - Moray Inca Ruins/Salinas Salt Pans
Breakfast at the hotel restaurant followed by a trip to Moray, an ancient site of large circular terraces built
by the Inca as an outdoor agricultural research station.
As you walk around the terraces they decrease in size to a central point making this hike a wonderful opportunity to acclimate in preparation for the Inca Trail.
Then there is an excursion to the Salt Pans of Salinas for a brief demonstration
of the salt extraction process.
Walk down to the Urubamba River and the small town of Salinas for a visit.
Lunch at a local restaurant and return to the hotel.
Dinner at the hotel.

Day 4: Sacred Valley - Pisac Market 
Breakfast at the hotel restaurant and then depart for the town of Pisac.
Enjoy an incredible acclimatizing walk through the Pisac ruins and then down to the town.
Return to the hotel for some free time before dinner.
After dinner your leader will conduct a final briefing session on the Inca Trail in preparation for the big hike going over all four days and what to expect.

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