Pisac: a colorful market and interesting ruins.
Pisac is a small town in the Sacred Valley and is famous for its colorful Sunday market. When you are in Cusco, I highly recommend you visit Pisac. There are a few ways to get to Pisac. You can either book a private tour (a bit pricy) or you can take a Tour to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. On this tour you will
visit all the highlights of this famous Valley, including Pisac, but also Ollantaytambo, Chincheros and Urubamba. You will have a guide, a bus and you will conveniently visit many tourist sites on one single day.
However, you can also go to Pisac by yourself, on a local bus. This takes more time but it is a really nice experience.
That’s what we did! We went to Pisac on a Sunday, early in the morning. The ride with public transport takes about an hour and is really beautiful; the price is approximately USD $ 4.
The bus trip itself is really nice, the views are beautiful and I really like the moment when you see the village of Pisac down in the Valley.
When we arrived in Pisac we first visited the market on the Plaza de Armas of in the village next to an impressive pisonay tree which is supposed to be over four hundred years old.
The pisonay is a native tree, first cultivated by the incas; according to them it was a sacred species.
The market takes place three times a week, on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. But the Sunday market is biggest and most lively.
There are stalls selling souvenirs, but what makes it so much fun on Sunday is that many local people come down from the mountains to sell their harvest. These local people wear traditional clothes and are so colorful and so beautiful! Also, they wear their harvest on their backs tied in a special way.
About half of the market consists of stalls selling souvenirs. Also there are many Peruvians who are trying to sell their goods. Very impressive! We walked around for a while and then we took a taxi up to the Ruins of Pisac. You can also walk up there, it’s a nice walk but it takes approximately one hour and a half, if you are well acclimatized to the altitude in Cusco.
To enter the ruins, you need a Boleto Turistico. This is a tourist ticket that includes entrance fees to many different sites in Cusco.
The ruins are at the top of the mountain so the view over the Sacred Valley of the Incas is fantastic. The Inca terraces that are built on the steep hills are very special and they are still in uses. This way the Inca’s could produce a surplus of food, more than it would have been possible without the terraces atthis altitude (approx. 2800 above sea level).
However, we missed having the guidance of a guide, who for sure would have told us about the history of those ruins. We had our guide books, but it would have been nice to explore the ruins and the Temple of the Sun with a guide.
We decided to hike back down instead of taking a taxi or bus. The hike was a lot of fun but very tiring. It took about 2 hours before we got back to Pisac. While walking down you get to see beautiful ruins and impressive views.
Pisac is really worth a visit. For more information about Pisac contact Dos Manos Peru Travel.