Location: Urubamba to Ollantaytambo

Today was truly a great day. After a lot of hard work, we had a day of rest. We started the day at one of the most beautiful places in Peru: a lake high in the mountains. When we arrived the clouds cleared and we saw the most placid lake. The lake was surrounded by pastoral fields and the huge Andes mountains in the background. The placid lakes waters were perfect for paddle boarding, one of the days first activities. Once on the water, you can feel the calmness of nature around you.

Once we finished our adventure around the lake, we were able to become even more in tune with our surroundings with an outdoor yoga lesson. After our amazing yoga lesson, we all sat down and ate one of the best meals I have ever had. The whole group dined on a traditional Peruvian meal that was fit for an Incan King! While eating, we learned about all the traditional crops that can grow in the mountains of Peru. Even though that meal was some of the best food I have ever had in my life, it couldn’t beat the second half of the day. Even though leaving Peruvian paradise was hard, seeing the drive to our next adventure was my favorite part of the day.

Our drive to the Sacred Valley was beautiful beyond words. The high mountains of Peru are nothing like what I have seen before. The peaks covered with snow somehow adds even more beauty to the gift that mother nature has bestowed to us. It is no mystery why the ancient Incas and modern Peruvians alike still worship the mountains and believe in the spirit of mother nature. The mountains give you a certain feeling that could come from their own higher power after seeing the beautiful mountains and being reminded of the beliefs that lie within nature we experienced another ancient Incan tradition.

Today we all got to see the traditional way of making clothing from alpaca. It was so interesting to see how over time the women were able to perfect and dye the wool only using natural materials. After they showed us how to dye the wool, we moved on to the weaving. Watching them weave was incredible. The amount of skill and time it takes to traditionally make something could take over 30 days. The time and tradition that is woven in this art form is truly something unique to Peru. Every woven image has a different meaning, even the colors chosen shares something about this amazing country. After we finished our time learning how to make textiles we made it to our current destination. We all arrived safe and sound and ended the day with another great meal and a meeting to reflect on all the great things that we have seen. Day 8 was great!