The Colcas of Ollantaytambo: free visit to the Sacred Valley

The town of Ollantaytambo, in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, is famous for its countless Inca constructions. The streets of the town have an urban design that dates back to the Inca era. At the top, the famous archaeological site of Ollantaytambo stands out with buildings such as the Temple of the Sun or the Baños de la Ñusta. On the hill opposite this archaeological site you can see some enormous colcas (warehouses). Visiting this place is free for everyone. It offers scenic views, buildings with a lot of history and an adventurous hike. Get to know more!

Tabla de Contenido

What are the colcas of Ollantaytambo?

The colcas of Ollantaytambo are Inca warehouses or granaries built on the high rocks of this town so that the cold winds preserve it in a better way.

The colcas were constructions of mud and stone that the Incas used to store food harvested in certain areas. In Ollantaytambo, the main product worked by the Incas was corn.

The colcas are also called Pinkuylluna. There are a total of three sets or warehouse areas. Each one has a rectangular structure (the rear walls are higher than the front ones). Each wall has an average height of 2.50 meters. They have large front windows (between 6 to 8 per wall) and two sides.

The colcas were made with stone and mud (rustic construction). Food was stored in large containers. The food was stored there because the cold and winds helped better with its preservation. Although there is no defining data, it is estimated that the main product that was stored was corn.

The colcas are arranged on terraces, as they are on a large slope. The purpose of these terraces was as retaining walls to prevent soil erosion. This greatly helped its conservation to this day.

The visit to the Ollantaytambo colcas is free for all tourists. You should only make the walk there starting from the center of town.

Las colcas de Ollantaytambo


The Pinkuylluna colcas are located 30 minutes walk from the center of the town of Ollantaytanbo in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.

It is estimated that the colcas are located at 2,822 meters above sea level (about 30 meters higher than the town of Ollantaytambo).

How to get there?

From the city of Cusco you must follow the following route to reach the Ollantaytambo colcas:

  • On Pavitos Street in Cusco you can take the public transport buses that in 1 hour 45 minutes will take you to the center of the town of Ollantaytambo (cost of approximately 12 Peruvian soles).
  • From the main square of Ollantaytambo, take Qosqo Ayllu Street, which leads to a detour towards the Colcas sector.
  • The walk is uphill and takes 30 minutes on average. Entry and visit are free for all tourists.

How much does it cost to visit the colcas of Ollantaytambo? Is it free?

The visit to the Ollantaytambo colcas is free for all tourists. Take advantage of!

Las colcas de Ollantaytambo

Visit hours

The Ollantaytambo colcas can be visited during the day: from 7 am to 5 pm.


Other nearby tourist attractions

If you visit the colcas of Ollantaytambo you can also visit the following tourist attractions:

  • Ollantaytambo Town – The living Inca city has a history that dates back 3,500 years (pre-Inca people inhabited the place). It stands out for its Inca streets, its plaza with different tourist services (cafes, pizzerias, bars) as well as the train station that leads to Machupicchu.
  • Ollantaytambo archaeological site – The religious site of Ollantaytambo is located in the upper part of the town. It was a center of worship for famous buildings such as the Temple of the Sun, the 10 Hornacinas Enclosure or the Ñusta Baths. Admission is with the Cusco Tourist Ticket that includes entry to Pisac, Chinchero and Moray (70 soles for foreigners and 40 soles for Peruvians).
  • Intipunku de Ollantaytambo – At the top of the town of Ollantaytambo is the Intipunku (Sun Gate in the Quechua language). Although the most famous Intipunku is in Machu Picchu, this one offers more spectacular views. The walk begins in the community of Cachiccata and takes 2 hours or more. It is also free for all tourists.

More information about the free visit to the Colcas of Ollantaytambo

The Ollantaytambo colcas are located on a steep rock. On one side, and seen from a distance, you can see the shape of a face called by local residents ‘the Viracocha face’ or ‘the old man of the rocks’. This capricious formation was achieved by wind erosion. Chance?

In the archaeological site of Ollantaytambo there are also colcas or similar warehouses. These have a roof similar to the one used in the Inca era. Visiting the Inca site of Ollantaytambo is not free.

Questions and answers

What were the colcas?

The colcas were warehouses or granaries built by the Incas for the storage of harvested food products. They were made in high geographies for better conservation due to the cold.


Are there colcas in Ollantaytambo?

In Ollantaytambo there are several colcas. The two most famous are at the archaeological site of Ollantaytambo (visit with the Cusco Tourist Ticket) and the Pinkuylluna colcas (free visit for everyone).


Is it free to visit the Ollantaytambo colcas?

Yes, visiting the Ollantaytambo colcas (also called Pinkuylluna colcas) is free for all tourists.


How long does it take to walk to get to the Ollantaytambo colcas?

From the Plaza de Armas of Ollantaytambo, follow Qosqo Ayllu Street. The walk is ascending and takes 30 minutes on average.


Is the hike to the Ollantaytambo colcas dangerous?

No, the walk is along well-defined paths. Of course, it is recommended to be focused on each step you take (do not use headphones or cell phones) since these are found on rocks and precipices.


Is it necessary to hire a guide to visit the colcas?

No, hiring a tour guide is not necessary to visit the Ollantaytambo colcas. If you want to hire one, you should do it in private service.


What are the visiting hours?

The Ollantaytambo colcas can be visited every day from 7 am to 5 pm.


What other tourist attractions to visit in Ollantaytambo?

In addition to the colcas, during your visit you can also visit the town of Ollantaytambo, its archaeological site and the Intipunku in the highest part. This last tourist attraction is also free.

Te Sugerimos leer . . .

Cheap tours in Cusco: 7 Colors Mountain tour, Machu Picchu 2 days tour by Hydroelectric, Humantay lagoon tour, Free Walking Tour Cuzco and more.
The Salineras de Maras and the circular platforms of Moray are two of the best landscapes in Cusco and the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Find out how much it costs to go!
The Sacred Valley of the Incas is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Cusco. Many talk about this place but...