The Quenco Archaeological Site is made up by two places (Quenco Grande, “Big Quenco,” and Quenco Chico, “Small Quenco,” both separated by a distance of 350meters), and will be your next stop. Quenco was a ceremonial center built by Huayna Capac, honoring the birth of his son Huáscar. In the center of the site you will observe the famous zigzag shaped corridor that the Spanish Conquistatdors used as a reference to name it (using the Quechua word q’inqu, which means “labyrinth.”) Quenco is worth visiting to see its subterranean galleries and semi-circular shaped amphitheater with 20 seats, where the ruling class and great priests waited for the results of the oracle before battle, at least according to what chronicles say.
The Incas had numerous fortresses to protect the sacred city of Cusco, such as Puca Pucara. The name-which means “red fortress” in Quechua- is due to the color its plazas, superimposed terraces, stairs and corridors. It is a splendid place where to stop, mediate, and relax.
Five hundred meters away you will find Tambomachay (from the Quechua tampu, “collective lodging,” and mach’ay, “resting place” or “caverns”), known as the Inca’s Bath. The archaeological complex, made up by a series of walls, aqueducts and cascades, was a resort for the emperor, as well as a palce where water was worshipped. As a matter of fact, one of Tambomachay’s features is its extraordinary hydraulic system. Two rock-carved aqueducts transport and keep a constant flow of clean and crystal-clear water all year round. This network of subterranean channels pours water into a stone pool in the lowest level. This is precisely where the water ritual took place.