Tag Archives: Moray

Our best of Peru

Most amazing train ride: Front seat on the train to the Sacred Valley. (on the way home, there was a fashion show on the train…)

Most dazzling monastery: Santa Catalina, Arequipa limaarequipaconvent.jpg

Best old world/Inca village with most intense cobble stoned lanes: Ollantaytambo 

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Most bizarre landscape: the salt pans of Salinas and terraced circles of Moray

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Best religious site with skulls and boxes of (human) bones: San Francisco Monasterio in Lima

Best church: That’s a tough one, in Cusco – the Cathedral and the Iglesia de Compania de Jesus and the church in San Blas. or the Iglesia de la Compagnia in Arequipa.

The Cathedral in Arequipa

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Best market: Also a hard call. Pisac, Arequipa (below) and Cusco are strong contenders

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Best folk art: Artesanias Las Pallas in Lima’s Barranco neighborhood

Best contemporary crafts gallery: Dedalo in Lima’s Barranco neighborhood

Best quality Andean Textiles: Centro de Textiles Tradicionales del Cuzco, on Av. El Sol or Shop of the Weavers of the Southern Andes on Tullumayo in Cusco.

Best hidden museum: Museo de Arte Popular, Cusco

Most spectacular site/ruins: Machu Picchu, hands down

Grandest plaza: Toss up between Cusco and Arequipa

Best service at a hotel: Apu Lodge, Ollantaytambo 

Best art at a hotel: Second Home Peru, in Lima (below)

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Most ancient-feeling hotel: La Casa de Melgar, Arequipa

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Best hotel to bring earplugs: Ninos Hotel in Cusco, lovely courtyard but carries sound especially people wandering through at 5:30 a.m.

Best sight for sore eyes: Our son.

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moray, salinas, urubamba…sacred valley

I am very glad we hired a driver to take us to the remarkable ruins in Moray and the super cool salt pans nearby because there is no way we could have driven safely ourselves. at first we didn’t think we would need the tall high ceilinged van the driver showed up in but it turned out to be pretty handy, navigating dirt and rock roads through the sacred valley a pond then winding up narrow switchbacks improbably carved into the tall mountains. we drove through glorious green fields of corn and rouge-colored soil where we think potatoes were being planted. and then we drove up and around and up and a little down Nd then up through high mountains with stunning views across the valley of snow capped mountains.

in Moray, we walked around and then into a huge ancient Inca site, rings of stone walls winding downward like an amphitheater. Rough stone steps hang down from each terrace for you to get up and down. Way cool. apparently the Incas used these as test plots for their crops. later we went to near y Salinas, a mountainside filled with glaringly white pools of salt.These are salt mines that have been used to harvest salt since the Inca days. We watched a few people in native dress harvesting the salt. For lunch we ended up at an excellent place, Tres Keros, where we had well cooked trout, chicken and the best logos Santeros (a beef stir fry) of the trip. our driver tried to steer us to some buffet we suspect was run by a friend of his and even told us that tres Keros was closed. but we found it very open when we walked in.

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