Cusco city was beautiful. We did a three hour waking tour of the city with stops at the farmers market, ancient Incan temple, and the main cathedral in the square.
Inside the cathedral we saw black Jesus on the cross! Our tour guide said he used to be the same color as the natives but because of all the offerings and smoke, he got so dirty they just decided to paint him black.
When we got to the statue of St. Anthony, the patron saint of single people, we all wrote down names or a list of a few things we were looking for in a mate and threw them up to the alter where he was perched. Keep you guys posted ;)
That night was the first night I wasn't in bed by 10. After dinner, we went for a drink in the worlds highest Irish pub, met the rest of the group at salsa lessons, and quickly left to find a hopping club. So. Much. Fun. I haven't partied like that in a long time.
And I did not feel pretty the next morning. The first thing we did was have an Incan ceremony and offering to the gods, followed by an ALPACA PETTING ZOO. I WAS SO EXCITED! We grabbed alfalfa and got to feed all the alpacas and llamas and pet them and frolic in the pens with them. I'm almost convinced that was my favorite part.
We stopped at Pisac, climbed the ruins, with yours truly huffing and puffing the whole way. We stopped at the Spanish colonial town below, at an empanada place, jewelry store, and for lunch. Heading up the Sacred Valley, we stopped at an Incan Bar, drank the local alcoholic beverage (which was gross). Our last stop was Ollantaytambo, with more ruins to climb and explore, pizza to eat (Machu Pizza!), and where I'm currently sitting in the courtyard of our hotel.
I booked too late, so I wasn't able to do this morning's six hour hike. There are five of us hanging around waiting to meet up and have breakfast and hang out here for a relaxing day which will be a refreshing change from the go go go pace thus far.
And tomorrow we do Machu Picchu.