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Around Cusco   1 | 2 

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Note: For more information about these pictures, read about our Cusco city tour.

Cusco from Train — The city of Cusco, as seen from the Backpacker Express as it leaves for Machu Picchu.
Saqsayhuaman — Some of the most amazing and enormous Incan walls can be found in the ruined ceremonial site of Saqsayhuaman (note the people all the way on the left to get a sense of scale).
Saqsayhuaman — With three walls running over 350 meters in length, this site was long thought to be a fortress. Now it is most likely thought to be a great sanctuary and temple to the Sun, as more recent research suggests — partly led, coincidentally, by our guide, who was selling signed copies of his book to prove it. ("Also available on amazon.com!", he was happy to point out.)
Saqsayhuaman — More of the ruins that belie Saqsayhuaman.
Saqsayhuaman — Another unusual feature of this site is the rounding of stones along the corners.
Saqsayhuaman — Believed to be the largest of the stones laid here, weighing in at over 300 tons. Not only was a rock this large moved by manual labor, it was transported over 50 kilometers, fitted perfectly to its neighbors, and done (archaeologists think) without wheels or rollers of any kind. Smart? Insane? Well, they're no longer around, are they?
Tambomachay — Water flows from a hidden channel behind the wall of this spring shrine into a small pool known as the Inca's bath. It is still tradition today for men to come here on their wedding day and drink from one of the three fountains: the left to have a son, the right to have a daughter, or the middle one to have twins. Our guide swears it works, as he's now two for two...and refuses to go near the water again.
Tambomachay — Source of the waters that feed the spring.

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Last updated: 25 Feb 2002 13:15:47