The Sacred Valley is one of Peru’s most important destinations and home to a fascinating collection of Inca ruins including the renowned Machu Picchu, a breath-taking and beautifully preserved 15th century stone citadel found perched in particularly dramatic mountain setting. There’s a diverse range of settlements throughout this vast, stunning valley ranging from bustling towns that serve as gateways to nearby points of interest, to sleepier villages with a peaceful, laidback lifestyle which has remained largely unchanged for centuries.
The Sacred Valley is a lovely location to spend several days relaxing and exploring with several superb rural lodges, stunning scenery, local markets and abundant historical sights.
Historically, the Sacred Valley wasn’t technically part of the famed Inca Empire; it was instead owned by the Emperor himself who oversaw the construction of many grand country homes and royal states. The growth of maize, which was very important to the Incas, was abundant here and agriculture continues to this day. The town of Urubamba provides convenient access to the area’s many impressive archaeological sites. Ollantaytambo, with its well-preserved ruins and stunning temple fortress, is well worth a visit, and many flock to Pisac to shop at the vibrant and lively weekly market.