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Monday, October 31, 2011

CUZCO AND SACRED VALLEY

Here I am in the middle of almost nowhere, perhaps a hundred miles from the Amazon River, and I'm actually sending this posting to the World.  Well, this is the day that worried me.  A flight (that's Inca Cola on the right) from Lima to Cuzco, where the elevation is just about 11,000 feet.  However, a few weeks ago I did go up to Mauna Kea (13,800 feet), so I was somewhat confident.

I think the planning for this day was faulty.  Globus should have immediately bused us to Sacred Valley and our hotel, which are at 9,000 feet and 8,000 feet, respectively.  Instead, they made us walk through churches and museums in Cuzco, sometimes uphill, with a guide that walked much to quickly.  Everyone made it, but some of us only barely.  I now have a slight headache and am really exhausted. In protest I'll just show one piece of art from Quorikancha, or the Sun Temple:


Originally built by Manco Capac before 1438, Pachacuti (to the right), who built Machu Picchu, enlarged this attraction.  However, the Spanish essentially destroyed the temple, and what you see is what barely remains.

We had an excellent "family" lunch, and here are a few more photos of my tour friends.  Maybe I'll get them all in before it's over.  Here, Sally from Texas:
Rosella and Jim from Saskatchewan:

We then made a few stops for shopping in Sacred Valley, ending up at the Casa Andina Private Collection in the valley.  This chain is excellent with nicely designed rooms and good food.  Tomorrow, Machu Picchu.

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