Posted by: gypsytales | June 7, 2010

Our Life in a High Altitude Andean Mountain Village

Apu Lodge, Ollantaytambo, Sacred Valley, Peru

We left Cusco on the 4th of May to return to Ollantaytambo to help out at Apu Lodge until August 2010.

Since the floods in January, the train to Machu Picchu no longer leaves from Cusco but rather from Pisco Cuccho which is the village after Ollantaytambo.  As there are no well-known accommodations in Pisco Cuccho, Ollantaytambo has become a popular starting point to Machu Picchu.

May, June and July are high season months so we are busy each day with a variety of tasks at the lodge.  After making breakfasts for the guests we have our breakfast briefing with Louise, the owner of the lodge who originates from Scotland.  During this time we do a feedback on the previous day’s achievements and then put action plans in place for going forward.

Here’s a picture update of some of the things we’ve been doing since returning to Ollantaytambo.

out for a Sunday walk in the high mountains

this bridge ia an entrance to a house we came across on our walk

spectacular views of the valley below

taking a break

We have a lot of fun when guests visit. John and Jan are from Texas. We visited a market with them in Chinchero. Jan has a penchant for hats which I duly inherited in a day and ended up buying myself a gorgeous red hat from the market. John celebrated his birthday while he was visiting so we ordered a surprise birthday cake for him and sang happy birthday.

Steve and Julie are from Canada (Yipee!!). It was Julie's life long dream to visit Machu Picchu. We so enjoyed their visit, sharing a glass of wine in the evenings and enjoying Steve's catchy sense of humour. Wait for us....we're on our way to Canada 🙂

Seth and Annie from New York, New York were great guests too. We spent lots of time chatting about travelling and life in New York. Here we are with them at Malu's our favourite local Peruvian Restaurant. Look at the view of one of the Inca ruins just outside the window.

Shinae was also from New York and was travelling solo. She happened by chance to be at Malu's when we arrived with Seth and Annie and we all ended up having lunch together.

table decorations at Malu's

here's my favourite photographer in action at the festival. For some really vibrant photos of the event click on Barry's blog to check them out

one of the street performers at the festival

colourful hat of one of the street dancers



  1. The lodge is lovely and you seem to be having alot of fun love the bright colours of the costumes Love Mom xxxxxx

  2. Welcome back! So nice to see all the people you met. You will need a dedicated hard drive just for your address book! And …. it looks like Barry’s hair is growing faster than yours!

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