The valley of the river Urubamba was a sacred place. It was a fertile valley that gave food to the most cherished man of the empire, Inca himself, the Son of the Sun. Here the crops for the highest social class were cultivated and here was also the centre of the Inca administration.
Nowadays the valley still lives from agriculture, especially from the production of maiz. The Urubamba is a fast growing little town, busy mostly with commerce, crops and tourism. It is touristic but in a less obvious way than Cusco. Whereas Cusco is all set up for the luxury travellers, Urubamba seem to attract more the hippie-type from both Lima and abroad. It became THE place for those you cherish the alternative lifestyle – I have seen both gringos and rich Limeños, who moved here to enjoy the relaxed life and an afternoon joint.
Urubamba region is also probably the basis to explore the Inca sites around – more quiet and more friendly than Cusco. We stayed in the local house of a friend in Yucay, a little village short ride away from Urubamba. Just a simple house but as I have already seen in Cajamarca – the simple houses in Peru are usually the most hospitable ones.