Tuesday 29 April 2014

A day trip to Tipón

Waterfalls of Tipón
On our last full day in Cusco, we decided that we needed to see just one last Inca ruin!

Terraces of Tipón
We hadn't bought the expensive tourist ticket that you need to visit the sights in the Sacred Valley, but I'd worked out that you could buy a partial ticket for a local ruin and we decided on Pisac. However, following a discussion with an American expat when out and about, we decided to go to Tipón, which is less visited, cheaper and as we found out, really beautiful and a nice place for a day out!

Having breakfast at the market
Up early(ish), we made our way to the local market first for breakfast and then also to buy provisions for the day, before heading off for the local bus.  We paid 1.50 soles each to get there (around 30p/50cents US) for a 40 minute bus journey out of town. When we got off, we discovered we had a bit of a hike up the hill to get to the actual ruins and managed to haggle the price of a collectivo taxi down from 5 to 3 soles each.

The ruins themselves are essentially a series of terraces set in the hills in beautiful surroundings. Water runs in aqueducts throughout, creating a peaceful ambiance and pretty waterfalls in places.

We also particularly liked the ‘floating steps’ that were there, that reminded us of the steps up to the spaceship in Flight of the Navigator.

There are very few visitors to the site, meaning that its very peaceful and perfect for a picnic! We also walked up to the temple that is up to the left of the site for even better views over the surrounding mountains.

From the temple we followed an empty aqueduct round to the back of the ruins and by this point, we really were about the only two people there.

There were no taxis in the car park when we wanted to head back, so we walked back to the main road instead. While I think it would have been quite a climb going up, going down was fairly easy and there is a walking track (just after the 15km sign, to the right as you walk out of the car park), so you don’t have to face any traffic around the hairpin bends.

Waterfall at the temple up on the hill at Tipon

Back at the bottom, we had time for a quick refreshment, before a local bus heading back towards Cusco picked us up.

Inca Cola! The drink of kings!
(I was quite upset to find that Coca Cola own Inca Cola
- it was originally Peruvian owned,
but has since been bought by Coca Cola)
Returning to Cusco, we had time to enjoy a beer overlooking the square, while the sun set, before heading out for dinner in the San Blas area with Nicole and Alex for our last night in the city.

Related posts:
For more about our time in Cusco, see Chilling in Cusco!
For an account of our experiences of the Inca Trail see El Camino de Inca
For an overview of where we stayed while staying in Peru, see Where we stayed: Peru

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