What to do in Urubamba: 10 Tourist Places that you must visit
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What to do in Urubamba: 10 Tourist Places that you must visit

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What to do in Urubamba: 10 Tourist Places that you must visit

The province of Urubamba is made up of some of the most touristic districts in all of Cusco. Among them, the district of Aguas Calientes stands out, where nothing less than the archaeological site of Machu Picchu is located. Inca citadels such as Chinchero, Ollantaytambo, Moray and more also stand out.


Urubamba is a Cusco province famous for hosting the main tourist attractions of the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Find out what places to visit in this province. Do not miss it!


The Sacred Valley Expat Community

The captivating energy of the Sacred Valley attracts individuals from every corner of the globe to this enchanting region. Diverse foreigners, hailing from a myriad of backgrounds, have made their homes across the valley, creating a distinctive and vibrant social tapestry. While Pisac boasts a substantial expatriate population, the town of Urubamba appears to have a more subtle expat presence, perhaps due to its larger size compared to some of the more tourist-centric villages.


Urubamba, however, maintains a thriving expatriate community that seamlessly integrates with the fabric of this Peruvian town. Despite its bustling nature, Urubamba exudes the ambiance of a working Peruvian village. Throughout the entire Sacred Valley, expatriates engage harmoniously with their surroundings, actively contributing to the community. Many expats support local farmers and businesses, advocate for sustainable practices, and participate in initiatives that give back to the Peruvian people.


There exists a profound respect among the expatriates toward the local residents, and a continual effort is made to learn from and assimilate into Peruvian society. This symbiotic relationship fosters a sense of unity and collaboration, creating a community that not only appreciates the mystical allure of the Sacred Valley but actively works to enhance and preserve its cultural richness.


Explore the province of Urubamba

Textile centers of Chinchero

In Chinchero there are dozens of textile centers where llama and alpaca garments are woven and dyed in the traditional way. It is part of the tour to the Sacred Valley.



Chinchero is famous for its archaeological site (Palace of Tupac Yupanqui). The town stands out for its customs, textile centers, church and clothing.


Urubamba City

Urubamba is a town located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. It is famous for the beauty of its landscapes, its pleasant climate and adventure sports.



Maras is a traditional town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Its main attractions are the salt mines of Maras and the circular platforms of Moray.



Moray, in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, is 50 kilometers from Cusco in Peru. The tours include a guide, entrance fees and transportation and cost approx. 60 dollars.


Catcco Museum

The museum exposes the history of the town of Ollantaytambo, famous for its archaeological site and beautiful crafts. It is located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.



Ollantaytambo is an Inca town and city in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. It has temples, walls, platforms and more. From there the train to Machu Picchu departs.


Maras Salt Mines

The Salineras de Maras in Cusco, Peru are hundreds of natural salt wells used since the Incas. You can go with a tour package that includes Moray.


Ollantaytambo archaeological site

This archaeological site has structures as imposing as Machu Picchu. It is located in the town of Ollantaytambo, in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.


Chinchero archaeological site

Chinchero is famous for its archaeological site, the former palace of Tupac Yupanqui. To visit it, you must buy a tour or the Cusco Tourist Ticket.



Yucay is a town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas famous for its pleasant climate, the ancient palace of the Incas Huayna Capac and Sayri Túpac and much more.


Yucay Museum of Living Culture

The museum shows some of the customs of the peoples of the Sacred Valley of the Incas such as: their textiles, their gastronomy, their drinks, ceramics and more.


Aguas Calientes

Aguas Calientes is also known as Machu Picchu town. It has hotels, bars, restaurants, markets, thermal baths and bus and train stations.


Thermal Baths of Aguas Calientes

The thermal baths of Aguas Calientes are 10 kilometers from Machu Picchu. It is open every day from 5 am to 8 pm. The cost is 20 Peruvian soles.


Mandor Gardens

This natural area is full of trees, flowers and wild animals. It is only 30 minutes from Machu Picchu town. Includes Mandor Falls.


Putucusi Mountain

The Putucusi is one of the 3 summits that surround Machu Picchu together with the Huayna Picchu and the Machupicchu mountain. The walk is difficult. The entrance, free.


Machu Picchu Site Museum

The Manuel Chávez Ballón museum is located in the town of Aguas Calientes, a short distance from Machu Picchu. It exhibits Inca pieces as well as panels and photos.


Macchu Picchu

Know everything you can see in Machu Picchu: Temple of the Sun, Temple of the Moon, Main Temple, Royal Tomb, Intihuatana, Intipunku, Sacred Rock and more.


Huayna Picchu

The Huayna Picchu mountain is the best adventure in Machu Picchu. It offers an incredible walk, beautiful landscapes, The Great Cavern as well as flora and fauna.


Huchuy Picchu mountain in Machu Picchu

Huchuy Picchu offers a new hiking route in Machu Picchu. It is located next to Huayna Picchu. The ticket must be purchased online.



The Intipunku (Puerta del Sol in Quechua) was the ancient access road to Machu Picchu of the Incas. Today is a short walk. It takes 1 or 2 hours to get there.


Machu Picchu Mountain

Machu Picchu mountain is the highest mountain in the Inca city. The hike to the top is demanding. You will be able to see beautiful landscapes, flora, fauna and more.


Inca Trail

The Inca Trail is a 4 day and 3 night route to Machu Picchu. It runs through part of the qhapac ñan (Inca road network) to the Intipunku (gate of the sun).


The Sacred Valley of the Incas

The Sacred Valley was a very important Inca agricultural area where they built temples and platforms such as Pisac, Chinchero, Ollantaytambo, Moray and Machu Picchu.


The capital of the Sacred Valley of the Incas

In the province of Urubamba are the majority of Inca citadels and Andean towns that make up the famous 'Sacred Valley of the Incas'.


The province of Urubamba is made up of seven districts: Chinchero, Huayllabamba, Machupicchu (Aguas Calientes), Maras, Ollantaytambo, Urubamba (capital) and Yucay.


During the Inca period, its fertile lands were used to build extensive terraces and platforms. Corn was mainly produced there.


The Incas also built their main citadels in the mountains of Pisac, Chinchero and Ollantaytambo. Near the town of Maras they built a circular agricultural center called 'Moray'.


During the colonial era, the Spanish built Baroque churches in the first reductions of Indians, which would later become Andean towns of great beauty.


Today the province of Urubamba offers dozens of tourist attractions for the visitor. This has caused the proliferation of hotels, restaurants and other services for tourists, some of them of a very good level. Even in the town of Chinchero an international airport is being built.


Where is Urubamba?

The town of Urubamba, the capital of the province of the same name, is located 53 kilometers by road from the city of Cusco. Urubamba is located at 2,871 meters above sea level.


The geography of the province of Urubamba is marked by the presence of the Vilcanota River as well as the high snow-capped mountains such as Salkantay, El Chicón, El Verónica and more.


The province of Urubamba is located northeast of the city of Cusco. It limits with the provinces of Calca, Anta and La Convención.


Much of its territory is made up of mountains and valleys. However, it also has high tropical jungle, such as the district of Machupicchu.


How to get there from Cusco?

To get to the district of Urubamba (capital of the province of the same name) by public transport, you must follow the following route:

  • From any part of the city of Cusco you must take a taxi or public transport bus to Pavitos street. Another option is to go on foot as this street is only 900 meters from the city's Plaza de Armas.
  • The public transport minivans will take the visitor to the town of Urubamba. The trip takes approximately 1 hour 30 minutes. The cost of the trip is approximately 8 Peruvian soles.
  • Once in the town of Urubamba, the tourist can take other public transport buses to neighboring towns such as Ollantaytambo. In this last town, the train to Machu Picchu is boarded.

History of the province of Urubamba

The territory of Urubamba was occupied by various ethnic groups who were subjugated or annexed to the nascent Inca empire in the 13th and 14th centuries. During the Inca period, the fertile territory was used for the cultivation of potatoes, corn, quinoa and more. The most important citadels built by the Incas were located in the current districts of Chinchero, Urubamba, Ollantaytambo and Yucay.


With the Spanish invasion in the 16th century, the Inca temples were destroyed. Baroque colonial temples were built in their place. In addition, the so-called "Indian reductions" were created, which would become the current towns and districts of the province. In 1825 the province of Urubamba was created. In 1839 the district of the same name was chosen as its capital. Due to its fertile lands as well as its towns and Inca citadels, the territory of Urubamba is also currently called 'The Sacred Valley of the Incas'.


Main tourist attractions

These are the main tourist attractions in the province:

  • Chinchero Archaeological Site – In this town the Emperor Túpac Yupanqui ordered the construction of his palace. With the arrival of the Spanish, it was destroyed. In its place the Spanish built the temple of Nuestra Señora de la Natividad. Of the immense palace, some walls, doors, stairways remain, as well as an immense set of platforms, small squares and paths.
  • Salineras de Maras – Just 7 kilometers from the town of Maras there are hundreds of natural salt wells formed millions of years ago. The salt was well used by the Incas. Today the local inhabitants distribute it through the markets of Cusco. The set of salt pools offers an amazing landscape.
  • Circular platforms of Moray – Moray is a set of large and small circular platforms, which offer a view that is often photographed by visitors. There the Incas experimented with the cultivation of various agricultural products, some produced in distant regions since the Moray platforms offer diverse microclimates.
  • Ollantaytambo Archaeological Site – This Inca citadel and temple displays some of the heaviest and most finely carved constructions of the Incas in Cusco. There the Incas faced the Spanish in 1537. Because of this many structures were damaged. However, you can still see constructions as immense as the Temple of the Sun, the enclosure of the 10 niches or the baths of the ñusta.
  • Machu Picchu – Machu Picchu was an Inca citadel that stands out for its fine stone constructions as well as for the wonderful and harmonious landscape in which it was built. It was the emperor Pachacutec who ordered its construction in approximately 1450. Today it is recognized as one of the 7 wonders of the modern world. It is located only 10 kilometers from the district of Aguas Calientes.

What to see and do in Urubamba?

Ceramic workshop Pablo Seminario

Pablo Seminario is an artist who opened his studio more than 30 years ago in Urubamba with his wife, Marilu Behar.

An architect passionate about Peruvian cultures, he learned different pre-Columbian ceramic techniques to perpetuate this art.

Today he is a renowned ceramic artist who sells his pieces all over the world!

They offer a small guided tour, with a presentation of the pieces and a video about the manufacturing process.

It is the perfect place to buy a good quality souvenir, but also to enjoy a break in its patio with a beautiful fountain, cacti and flowers.

Address: 405 Berriozabal Avenue, Urubamba; open every day from 8am to 7pm.


The Urubamba market

In Peru, the market is the heart of the community and this is even more true of the Urubamba market because it is much less touristy than others, like the one in Písac, for example.

It is a large covered market where little houses sell fruits, vegetables, a variety of potatoes, meats, cereals, and excellent fresh fruit juices.

If you like to mix with the local population and discover all kinds of products, it is a place to visit in Urubamba.

Address: two corners of the Plaza (Jirón Comercio, Urubamba)


Explore Maras and Moray

About 10 km from Urubamba are the Salinas de Maras, a set of more than 3,000 saltwater wells.

It is a must-see in the Sacred Valley, and a magical place to take photos!

You can even visit the salt flats with a local community that offers a complete experience with different workshops to discover their traditions, taste chicha morada and guinea pig.

7 km from Maras are the agricultural terraces of Moray, where the Incas managed to simulate 20 different microclimates to grow plants from all over the empire.



There are several hikes that you can do from Urubamba.

For example, you can go to the Tantanmarka Viewpoint, which offers a magnificent view after a 45-minute climb. There is also another point of view a little further on.

For a more advanced hike, head to Nevado Chicón, which rises to 5,530m in the Cordillera de Urubamba (can be done solo, but best to go with a guide). The walk allows you to see: a river, green landscapes, the Juchuyocha Lagoon, etc.


Relax in the Spa of the Hotel Tambo del Inka

Tambo del Inka is one of the most luxurious hotels in Peru with a prestigious spa.

It offers various treatments and massages, a jacuzzi, as well as an indoor and outdoor pool.

The outer part offers a magnificent view of the gardens and the river.

Price: massages start at 162 soles, other treatments start at 176 soles, you can use the pool, gym and sauna for 20 dollars.

Address: Avenida Ferrocarril, Urubamba, open every day from 7 to 10 at night. Remember to book several days in advance, especially in high season


The town of Yucay

Yucay is a very pretty and quiet town where you can walk between the corn fields and the mountains.

Enchanted by its pleasant climate and its fertile land, Huayna Cápac decided to settle in the town, he built palaces and agricultural terraces with an irrigation system.

The place was considered a great example of hydraulic technology and agricultural production. Today the aqueducts are still working!

Walking you will see a mixture of Inca architecture (the Ñusta Palace and the Sayri Túpac Inca Palace, which is next to one of the town squares) and colonial architecture (Santiago Apóstol Church).


Perolniyoc waterfall

It is a 100 meter waterfall surrounded by beautiful vegetation.

You have to go through the Socma community first because the walk begins from there.

It is a little touristy place that is worth visiting in Urubamba if you have time.

Also, the whole path is beautiful and access is free!


How to get to the Perolniyoc waterfall?

On your own: on the Pachar-Huarocondo highway, go to the community of Socma (2h from Cusco)

With a tour from Cusco: the visit includes pick-up at your hotel in Cusco, the hike to Perolniyoc, lunch with local products, and a stop at the Inca site of Ñaupa Iglesia.


Kaia Ecostore

It is a small store where you can find many natural products from the region.

There is also an "esoteric" section, but above all it is a good place to buy good quality coffee, honey, essential oils, craft beers and other products.

Address: Avenida Berriozabal 111, Urubamba.


Inkariy Museum

It is the best museum in the region!

It presents the Caral, Chavín, Paracas, Mochica, Nasca, Wari, Lambayeque and Chimu-Inca cultures with clothing and reproductions of typical scenes.

Address: Km 53 of the route between Urubamba and Písac, Mon-Sun 8:30am-5pm, entry 35 soles.


Participate in the Festival of the Lord of Torrechayoc

The Lord of Torrechayoc is the patron of Urubamba.

It is a big party that takes place in mid-May (usually on the second Saturday of the month) with various events, with a mass, a procession, traditional dances with beautiful costumes and fireworks to close the party.

If you are lucky enough to be there in May, I recommend you go because the popular festivals are always impressive in Peru, you will not be disappointed!


Yoga and meditation session

Various places such as Kinsapacha, Casa de Voz, Willka T'ika Essential Wellness or Samadhi offer workshops on healing, well-being and a sustainable lifestyle: Kundalini yoga with breathing exercises, Mantra, meditation or gong.


Weather in Urubamba

The climate in the town of Urubamba (capital of the province) is temperate and warm. The temperature varies from a maximum of 23ºC. up to a minimum of 4ºC. at certain times of the year. The average temperature is 11ºC.


From April to October the dry season occurs. In those months the rains are not frequent (the geography becomes dry). Also the nights are colder. From November to March the rainy season occurs. In those months it rains more frequently. The nights are less cold.


Stroll Through the Urubamba Cemetery

It may sound peculiar, but the cemetery in Urubamba is undeniably breathtaking, making a visit one of the most captivating experiences in the town. Adorned with exquisite fresh bouquets of flowers, this graveyard is nestled amid the verdant embrace of the surrounding mountains. A small makeshift flower shop at the heart of the cemetery adds to its charm, where locals purchase large floral arrangements to lovingly place on headstones. Venture to the rear of the cemetery, and you'll discover a hidden gem—a small church tucked away along a tranquil path weaving through the lush grass.


Though compact, the cemetery is enclosed by a substantial fence. Families can be found sharing drinks or meals around a headstone, cherishing moments with departed loved ones whose spirits linger in the sacred space. There's a unique energy permeating the air, as this cemetery was erected atop the ancient Inca ruins of Palacio de Huayna Capac.

Arguably, Urubamba's cemetery stands out as one of the most hauntingly beautiful resting places I've encountered in all of Peru.


Best Tours in Peru

Many are the routes that take you to Machu Picchu, but none is like the Inca Trail Tours, the most famous pedestrian path in the Americas. After flying from the capital of Perú, Lima, you will arrive in Cusco to walk for four days along a path through forests and dense fog, millenary stone steps and discovering the ruins of ancient fortifications and Inca cities, and all the time enjoying majestic views.

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