Our second day at Machu Picchu was better than the first day, if that is possible. We even had a bit of a sleep in! We headed up the mountain on the narrow one way, not radio controlled road. Drivers seem to know what they are doing, Although sometimes We got to the top to discover how lucky we were to have two days of blue sky! This morning there were no clouds, anywhere and we were able to see the tops of all the mountains. The plan for the day was to climb Wayna Picchu (alt. 2693 M) We were at the gate early for our 10a.m. departure, and started our trek at ten to ten. I was going regardless of what my travel partners decided, but so happy the three of them joined me, it was awesome to share such a view with Gary and such good friends, yet one more site that really words can not describe. Not recommended for anyone out of shape, and the cave we navigated thru to get to the very top was a pretty tight squeeze, with a wood ladder to get on top of the boulder, which is the highest point. Of course going up is one thing, but what goes up, must come down – and coming down you realize just how steep the stairs and trails are. Not great for those scared of heights, however worth working on that phobia to see the views.
With our successful trek up and down the mountain under our belts we got on the bus and headed back down to the town, arriving in time for a few cerveza before boarding the train to Cusco. We had a leisurely walk to the train, and got on board for what we thought was the train to Cusco, however discovered an hour later that we would transfer to a bus at Maras for the 2.75 hr. trip into Cusco. Of course we were not really prepared, as we were not advised of this little itinerary change, however, after much pushing and shoving and finding Maureen on a different bus, we all got settled in for the last leg into Cusco. On arriving in Cusco we were then transferred to our hotel, Novotel Custco, only a few short blocks from the main square. Our tour the next day consisted of several temples and churches in and close to the main square. You could not take photos, in the Basilica Cathedral Located in the main square, but there is no way to capture the beauty of this spectacular peice of art anyways!This is a Catholic temple built upon Inca Viracocha’s palace. Built in 1560 by the Spanish architect Juan Veramendi and finalised by master Juan Correa. There is also a painting collection with more than 400 canvases. We also drove approx. 50 km to the Tambomachay , which is known as the Inca baths. It dates from the year 1500. It had a religious function honoring water as a vital part of agriculture and regeneration of the earth. Of course there are “sales people” at most of these sites, and because I was wearing shorts, they figured I should be cold, and an easy target for a sale. I wasn’t cold, but one ol’ guy was quite persistent throwing a beautiful 100 percent baby llama poncho over my head! The price started at 150 and by the time we reached the bottom of the hill It was at less than half half price, and well worth the cost, regardless what it was made of. But did not purchase. Once back on the bus, realized that when the poncho was thrown over my head, my sun glasses must have gone flying. Sylvia’s group, always in a hurry, so didn’t try to go find them, or get caught up with the “salesman” again!
PS: Did Gus tell you about his hummingbird picture Maureen?