There’s more than enough to see in the Sacred Valley without hoofing it over the mountains and braving the sandflies of the Inca Trail. The Urubamba valley has a plethora of ancient ruins, sacred sites, wonderful wildlife and spectacular views. There is reliable, easy to find transportation around the area, and it’s great for leisurely exploring the Inca way of life. And you still end up enjoying Machu Picchu, rested and ready to explore.
Cusco is the starting place for all your Inca adventures. It’s also where you start your journey on the famous Inca Trail, which is the original highway from the capital to one of their most sacred cities. The original purpose of the trail was more about pilgrimage and devotion to the ancient Gods. While a good deal of it has been torn down by the Spaniards and the elements, a lot of the attractions are still there. It’s not just about the ruins, but communion with nature, like the original builders had intended, and walking the footsteps of the natives.