Sacred Valley’s archaeological sites included in Boleto Turistico/BTC are Pisac, Chinchero, Moray, and Ollantaytambo. Not included in BTC is Maras Salt Mines but the entry fee is only 10 soles, while it is near Moray, it is off the main road so I paid an extra U$5 for my private driver to take me there (average daily rate for a private driver is U$65). The price is per car so if I had another 3 people with me, it is actually super cheap, in comparison to the group tour of at least 12 people.
On the way to Pisac, we stopped at Awana Kancha which is a community that uses weaving as their main source of income; read more about them in the photo below. Also within the village is a llama sanctuary – probably my best models to date :p
Then we continued to Ollantaytambo; for me it is the most interesting archaeological site after Machu Picchu (in the area). From here, I was able to see the sculpted Inca rock faces on the opposite mountain. The Ollantaytambo village itself is warm and charming, I wished I included at least one night there.
When we got to Moray, it started to rain and I didn’t have the energy to go down the muddy steps so I only took photos and appreciated its beauty from the top. It was almost 5pm, I started to worry about not seeing Maras Salt Mines as all archaeological sites close at 5pm; most tours of Sacred Valley do not include Maras – it is technically not an archaeological site, it is an operational salt mine.
We didn’t have time to stop at Chinchero which was meant to be our last stop – don’t worry I was not devastated.
As a consolation, the driver took me on a shortcut back to Cusco passing through Lake Huaypo. It was not a shortcut really, it is across dirt roads, and Google Map indicates this route to be at least 12 minutes longer. It was a beautiful sight to see the lake with the sunset in the background.