Thursday, July 30, 2009

Pisac Market and Ruins

July 26 – Pisac Market and Ruins
Blog written by Danielle Itin, Englewood, NJ

Today, the group got up early and drove to Pisac, famous for its huge Sunday market. The rolling mountains and farmland created a beautiful backdrop to the bus ride. We were welcomed into Pisac by a traditional Peruvian wedding taking place at the local church, and we got to experience some of the culture behind the celebration. After working on our On Assignment projects, we spread out in groups of three and four to put our negotiation skills to the test in the market.

The market was filled with bright colors and Peruvian patterns, along with persistent shopkeepers, whom we were encouraged to bargain with. Everyone loved being immersed in the culture and conversing with the locals, plus, buying loads of souvenirs. After a few hours spent at the marketplace, we got on the bus again and headed towards the ruins of Pisac. The ruins are the largest fortress-city-temple complex of the Incas. It was cold and windy but the ruins were great. After touring around them we headed back to Ollantaytambo.

In the evening everyone started packing, picking up laundry, and preparing for the hike the next day. Later we headed to Pachamama Grill to warm up with quinoa soup for dinner. It was the place where we ate our first dinner, and our last, in Ollantaytambo. The food was filling and good, and after we ate we picked up the pottery we made in town. We’re almost all packed and we’re excited to get started on our hike tomorrow!

Traditionally dressed local boys blowing conch shells in the huge Sunday Market in Pisac

Photo by Gabriel Ruiz Blake, Puigpunyent, Illes Balears, Spain

A bride and groom walking toward their wedding ceremony at a small local church

Photo by Gabriel Ruiz Blake

Friendly market greetings

Photo by Gabriel Ruiz Blake

Catherine emerges from a cave on one of the Inca roads inside the ruins of Pisac

Photo by Gabriel Ruiz Blake

Looking out over the ruins of Pisac

Photo by Gabriel Ruiz Blake

Some of the most precise and intricate Inca stonework

surrounds the Intiwatana or ‘hitching post of the sun’ in the ruins of Pisac

Photo by expedition leader Lindsay Mackenzie

The intermittent rain created a stunning rainbow that greeted us upon arrival at the ruins.

Photo by expedition leader Lindsay Mackenzie