Cusco and the Sacred Valley

 

Peru-CuscoCusco: Capital of the Inca Empire until 1533 AD

We fly to Cusco to acclimatize. At 11,000 feet, Cusco was founded by first Inca emperor, Manco Capac, in the 12th century. We visit Sacsayhuaman (pronounced “sexy woman”) to witness exceptional Inca stonework, some boulders weighing as much as 350 tonnes. The air is thin here. We visit the village of Pisac and its ridge-top ruins, lunch in Urubamba.

Back in Cusco we visit the Cathedral and see a version of the Last Supper that features a guinea pig. The guinea pig is of great Peruvian tradition, and we skip it. Peruvian food is delicious, dominated by maize, potatoes, quinoa; pork, beef, and fish. We try Alpaca, the low cholesterol meat.

 

 Family-in-PeruChecking out the Inca ruins near Cusco

There are lots of signs of cell phones. Ubiquitous they are even the in poorest areas. In Peru, gas is priced at about $7.50 a dollar; the only resource in Peru sold in its English-system “gallon” increment. Despite their average income, Peruvians pay twice our rate for gasoline. Amazing it is how the oil companies sell oil at twice the price in Peru as it is America. Machu Picchu’s new bus fleet runs on gas from the jungle.

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