Here I am again after a longer silence, there was just so much happening at once that I didn´t have time for internet. Peru is just an amazing country full of life and opportunities to have the time of your life.
I arrived in Cusco about two weeks ago and happened to bump into another mad person that did the 22h of bus travel from Ayacucho to Cusco. We decided to visit Cusco together.
Cusco itself has mostly churches to show as “sights”, this is because, even though it is an old Inka town, the Spanish took care to tear down basically all important Inka buildings and replace them with churches and mansion. They did build some magnificent churches though, the cathedral is impressive, as is the depicted church. The story behind that church is that while they were building it, the arch bishop of Cusco complained that it may not become more magnificent than the cathedral itself. The fight got so heated that they called upon the pope in Vatican city to decided if the church may be build as glorious as it was planed.
The pope decided that it might not be more pompeous than the cathedral, but by the time that decision was communicated to Cusco they had finished building the church as originally planned.
Around Cusco however there are still loads of Inka sites and ruins, since you have to buy a “boleto” valid for all ruins to enter into any of the sites, we decided to do as many as possible of them. On our first day we did the four sites closest to Cusco, the biggest challenge in this turned out to be to pronounce the places we wanted to go to correctly. Namely Sacsáyhuaman, Q´enqo, Puka Pukara and Tambo Machay.
The first place we went to was Sacsáyhuaman, incredibly hard to pronounce until someone pointed out that it is quite easy to remember once you note the similarity to “sexy woman”. After that I had no issues remember the place´s name. Sacsáyhuaman was a fort, where both the Inka and the Spanish defended the city of Cusco against the other. It´s most notable feature is defense wall in form of teeth. Indeed the city of Cusco was planned in a shape of a panther and the defense wall are the teeth.
The other sites turned out to be very small, but charming. The next one we went to was Q´enqo, the ceremonial center, which turned out to be nothing more than a rock in which an altar had been carved.
Puka Pukara is a little outpost with, probably, rest rooms for travellers and at it´s side is Tambo Machay, the Inka´s bath and a temple where they venerated the agua.