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The South Valley circuit just outside Cusco is a region little-visited by tourists, but very popular among locals! Spectacular scenery, regional culinary specialties and a dash of Andean mysticism await you on this captivating one-day excursion through the South Valley Circuit.
For a longer tour with additional archaeological highlights – perfect for the history buff – check out our Tipon South Valley Tour!
This one day Cusco tour includes a stop in the Cusco bread-making capital of Oropesa, where you will get to try some of their famous pan chuta. From here, this Cusco day tour continues to Tipon for a tour of this incredible Inca site. In Tipon, you also have the option to add some hands-on activities, from baking your own tanta wawa bread to working with ceramics or learning about traditional medicinal herbs.
Our last stop on on this one day tour in Cusco is to the mystical town of Huasao, famous for its brujos and shamans, where you can have your fortune read in coca leaves!
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Cusco can experience every season in a single day, so you should be prepared for sun and rain, cold and hot weather! We recommend a hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, sweater, rain gear or plastic poncho, winter hat or toque and gloves. In addition, you should bring:
Remember that scans of the student card (for students) or passports (for children) need to accompany the bookingin order to be eligible for the discount.
Our guides are all licensed and receive regular training. They share their experience, professionalism, knowledge and enthusiasm with our passengers on every trek.
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Want to join a trek? Ready to confirm a departure date of your own, but interested in having others join you? Then Trekkers Wanted is for you! Our innovative Trekkers Wanted system matches people up who are interested in hiking the same trek, bringing costs down and multiplying the fun for everyone! Read More about Trekkers Wanted, post your trek or search for confirmed departures!
Today, we leave the city behind and head south for the South Valley circuit! Our first stop is Oropesa. This village, only 11km from Cusco, was popular with conquistadors due to its surprisingly sunny climate. It was these Spanish colonizers who introduced wheat to the area and changed Oropesa forever: it is now officially Peru’s bread capital. There are at least 40 bread ovens in this South Valley circuit town, and 90% of the population are bread-makers! We’ll check out some panaderías and munch on some of the delicious pan chuta (chuta bread) the town is best known for, before heading for our next stop, Tipon.
Tipon was the site where the Incas domesticated plants for food, and it is home to impressive agricultural terracing and an extensive, still-operational irrigation system. After exploring this South Valley circuit ruin, we’ll hike 3km down the hill through pretty farmland to the town of Tipon, where we’ll have lunch at a typical quinta (home-style restaurant). Tipon is Peru’s recognized cuy (guinea pig) capital, so this is the most authentic place to try this very traditional dish!
Our last stop is the tiny village of Huasao. Huasao is locally known for its talented brujos (witches or shamans), said to be able to make you successful in life and love with their potions, and cure illnesses with plant and animal rituals. If you’re game, you can have your future read in coca leaves!
Our tour of the South Valley Circuit concludes after this and we make our back to Cusco.
Are you interested in doing something a little more hands-on during your excursion? We can arrange a cultural workshop in Tipon that takes about 1h30 to 2h total, and includes a workshop in preparing tanta wawa, a traditional sculptural sweet bread, and two more workshops.
Tanta wawa is bread baked in the shape of a baby and typically made for holidays like Easter. In addition to this workshop, you can add either a ceramics workshop or a class in traditional medicines. The ceramics workshop is split into two parts: first, you get to take a spin on the potter’s wheel; then, you can paint an already-fired figurine, which is yours to keep. In the traditional medicines workshop, you will learn to make ointments using traditional herbs found at the workshop.
This workshop has an additional cost of $55 per person.