Tour of the Archaeological Site of Pisac

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    Tour of the Archaeological Site of Pisac

    It is a highly recommended place for anyone visiting the valley. Located on the side of the mountain, above the town of Pisac, it is unknown to most visitors and despite being as impressive as Machu Picchu itself, it does not receive even the tenth of visitors that it receives every day.

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    The ancient Inca city of Pisac

    The ancient Inca settlement of Pisac is located at the eastern end of the Sacred Valley of the Incas, one hour from Cusco. It is located at the bottom of the valley, on a mountain behind the current town of Pisac, existing from the colony. It is one of the best Inca archaeological sites in Peru.

    Some historians claim that the name Pisac derives from the word "pisaca" meaning partridge, and the vast agricultural terraces on the slopes of the mountain may represent the wings of the partridge. Near the main structures, at the top, you will find the largest known Inca cemetery in existence, which in turn is the largest ancient cemetery in South America.

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    How to get from the town of Pisac to the Pisac Archaeological Site

    You can take the ascent from the town of Pisac, on a hidden access road that leads to the back and then to the side of the mountain where the Inca town is located or you can call a taxi, it will take you to the back to the ruins. You can board them from the main road, these charge between 30 and 35 soles (US $ 10 - 12). It will take around 15 or 20 minutes to arrive.

    To enter the archaeological complex of Pisac you will need the Tourist Ticket of Cusco; You can purchase the general ticket, which includes 16 of the most impressive places in Cusco, or purchase only the "Partial Tourist Ticket Circuit 3" (Archaeological sites of the Sacred Valley of the Incas). In case you use a taxi to go up to the archaeological site of Pisac, be sure to agree on the price before boarding it.

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    The path

    Once at the site, you must make your way between the tourist buses that are parked - stuck - in a small parking lot at the beginning of the archaeological park. You will come to a set of large agricultural terraces that descend down the side of the mountain. Take the path on the right, you will see an Inca urban settlement known as Q’alla Q’asa located above you on the side of the mountain; You will also see ceremonial fountains fed by an intricate network of stone canals, and the Inca Cemetery - the largest ancient cemetery in South America - on an adjacent hillside.

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    Continue on the mountain trail

    Continue on the path that hugs the side of the mountain, after a few hundred meters you will enter through a beautiful lithic gate, this marks the entrance to the main temple complex, you will have impressive views on the left side, the undulating path continues along the side of the mountain before reaching a narrow tunnel. Coming out of the small tunnel you will get the first image of a small residence and the agricultural area in the lower left, often referred to as Pisaca or Q’allaqasa; from here it will continue for 10 minutes to the main temple of the ancient Inca city of Pisac.

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    Temple of the Sun Complex

    The constructions of the ancient town of Pisac are one of the few that can prepare you for what you will see in Machu Picchu, or those that are at its height, if you have already seen the wonder. Situated on a small ledge with beautiful panoramic views on both sides, the complex is made up of a dozen buildings constructed of exquisitely "carved" pink granite stones, although molded would be the most accurate term.

    The temple of the Sun with an Intihuatana (sundial) as a central piece, has a curved rear wall and a straight line in front, similar to a letter D; the temple is perfectly aligned with the sun and marks with incredible precision the summer and winter solstices. The narrow water channels, the exquisite work on its stones, the altars and wells found reflect its spiritual importance and its sacred character.

    pisac templo del sol
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    From the incredible complex of the Temple of the Sun you can continue descending to a point where you can see how the three valleys that surround Pisac converge. An optional trail continues - uphill - to a rocky ground where other buildings and watchtowers are attached to the side of the mountain. If you don't feel like going up, a path just after the complex leads out towards the urban sector. The many levels of terraces that literally fall off the side of the mountain, will give you the opportunity to take unique views.

    This is one of the best times to take time and rest. The trail will continue for another 20 minutes before connecting to a wide trail, which gently descends to the town of Pisac.


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