Ollantaytambo: what to do at the archaeological zone of the Sacred Valley


This post is also available in: Español

As an indispensable part of the Sacred Valley, Ollantaytambo stands as a town full of Inca traditions and culture and archaeological sites that testify to its legacy.

Its streets and ruins tell the story of all the fascinating Inca culture: how they lived and how they organized themselves civilized.

If your final destination is to visit Machu Picchu, Ollantataymbo is an essential stop that will leave you with pleasant memories.

And if it is about variety, the town has restaurants, bars, hotels and markets full of traditions.

Ollantaytambo Ruins

People tell the story of an Inca emperor who built this city, besides the people, the Inca monarchy lived there.

It was a place where the emperor installed his soldiers, with areas of cultivation and used as part of the Inca religion.

Nowadays the impressiveness of the monuments of ollantaytambo ruins will take you back to that time.

The fascinating ruins and remains of the empire that you will find in Ollantaytambo are the following:

  • Sun Temple

This building is located at the top of a pyramid. The square still has 6 monoliths at the top. This temple honors the meaning of Ollantaytambo “place of observation from above”.

To access to the Sun temple you must climb 150 steps perfectly built by the ancient civilization.

It is known that the material with which the temple was built is granite, a very arduous job since the stones were extracted 4 kilometers from the valley

It is believed that its purpose was ceremonial, since the Incas worshiped the sun. You can not miss the temple of the sun. This will surely be one of the best experiences you will live during your visit to the town.

  • The platforms

It has become the favorite place for tourists. The platforms were used as terraces by the inhabitants to plant and cultivate.

This method implemented by the Incas demonstrates that their strategies and architecture exceeded that of other civilizations

The platforms are about 700 meters long, 58 meters wide and more than 10 meters deep. As curious data, these platforms are placed according to the position of the sun.

One of these platforms has an enclosure with cavities that bears the name of the temple of the 10 windows.

  • Inca people

When walking through the streets of the town you can see the water channels, there it ran the clean water that the people consumed.

A part of the town is maintained in excellent condition, the square is the centerpiece. You can see various buildings that functioned as the rooms for the nobles.

Here you can get different establishments that work and give life to this town; restaurants, hotels, spiritual centers and shops wait for you.

The combination between the old and the current makes the Inca town an excellent place to visit.

What to visit in Ollantaytambo

  • The Church of Ollantaytambo

This small church is located near the main square, with a rustic and simple design attracts visitors.

  • Andean Museum of traditional technology and culture of the communities of Ollantaytambo

It is located near the plaza, it is a place to learn a little more about the Inca culture. With a didactic dynamic you can access the history of the ancestors. Many of these stories are beliefs rooted in the hearts of the villagers.

  • Yanacocha Lagoon

You could not miss a good swim in the spectacular waters of this natural reservoir of water.

To access the place you must make a 4-hour trekking, starting from the Huayocari ranch.

  • Artisan market

Every trip should be full of memories and things to share. The market has a wide variety of products.

Typical handicrafts of the region entirely made by hand, is a good activity if you are making time to wait for the train.

  • Biking and trekking

Mountain biking in Abra Málaga will give you the adrenaline and adventure you need.

The downhill has a distance of 1500 meters, so that makes the landscape of the route worth it.

Another option is to visit the Pincuylluna hill, which is located opposite to the temple of the sun. There you will also find several Ollantaytambo ruins.

How to get there: Ollantaytambo train station

One of the routes to get to Machu Pichu is going through Ollantaytambo, which is a stop you must do.

If you want to go through this Inca city from Cusco you can do it by bus, taxi or minivans.

Ollantaytambo is a wonderful place, a preamble to what you will find when you arrive at the citadel which is the final point.

These are the 2 routes you can take:

Pisac Route

Departing from Cusco you must go to the Pisac town, from there a bus leaves to Calca.

From Calca you take another bus that will take you directly to the Urubamba town and finally another bus to Ollantaytambo.

The journey takes approximately 2 and a half hour.

Chinchero Route

On the Pavitos Street of Cusco, there is a bus that leaves you with a direct arrival to the Ollantaytambo Square.

The Ollantaytambo train station; it is a busy and popular route, only two stations connect with the Machu Picchu station, and this is one of them.

One recommendation for passengers is to buy tickets in advance, especially if the season is high

Before booking your train ticket you must first have the tickets that will assure you the entrance to Machu Picchu.

It is a good decision to know this beautiful town. It is one of the most beautiful places in the world.

Do not miss the opportunity and discover everything about the Inca culture, you will not regret it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.