Ollantaytambo was a strategic military, agricultural and religious center to administer and control the Sacred Valley of the Incas and enter the jungle of Cusco; this is deduced by the constructions that presumably were for agricultural deposits and for military use like walls and watchtowers (probably to protect themselves from the jungle ethnic groups). There are 150 steps that separate the summit from the lower part and you can see the perfect carving of the stones, obviously dedicated to the cult of water, with great similarity to those of Tipón (South Valley of Cusco).

This place was the ceremonial center of water purification and worship. The archaeological site comprises a series of overlapping terraces, showing the impressive and large stone blocks finely carved and located on the upper terrace (Temple of the Sun)

The Inca remains in Ollantaytambo are vestiges of the town that Pachacutec ordered to build, after subduing its inhabitants and conquering these lands, imposing agricultural infrastructure works, composed of hundreds of platforms and channels to secure farmland, checkpoints and vigilance in the tops of the hills, domestic and ceremonial buildings. They also built a bridge to connect the town with the Inca Trail, and built urban satellites on the route to Machu Picchu.

The Plaza Manyaraqui with its fountains is believed to have been part of a center to pay homage to water. On Cerro Pinkuylluna or Tunupa, there are huge stone constructions, of 2 or 3 floors, which are presumed to be agricultural deposits (colcas) or lookout points. There is also an enormous stone that resembles the face of an Inca, watching over Ollantaytambo.

The town of Ollantaytambo is called “Living Inca City” because its inhabitants live according to uses and customs inherited from their ancestors. From Ollantaytambo, it is possible to visit the town of Willoc, where Quechua is spoken, and whose red and black garments are similar to Huayruro, a red and black seed used as an amulet.

Ollantaytambo is the only Inca city that is still occupied by local families. All the design and structure of the original Inca town is evident in the fifteen blocks that make up the town.

 

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