The Sacred Valley of the Incas (Spanish: Valle Sagrado de los Incas; Quechua: Willka Qhichwa), or the Urubamba Valley, is a valley in the Andes of Peru, 20 kilometres (12 mi) at its closest north of the Inca capital of Cusco. It is located in the present-day Peruvian region of Cusco. In colonial documents it was referred to as the "Valley of Yucay." The Sacred Valley was incorporated slowly into the incipient Inca Empire during the period from 1000 to 1400 CE.The Sacred Valley is a major tourist destination. In 2013, 1.2 million people, 800,000 of them non-Peruvians, are estimated to have visited Machu Picchu, its most famous archaeological site. Many of the same tourists also visited other archaeological sites and modern towns in the Sacred Valley.
Stretching from Pisac to Ollantaytambo, this fertile valley is irrigated by the Urubamba River. The Chanapata civilization first utilized this area starting at around 800 BCE because of the rich soil used for agriculture. The Qotacalla civilization lived in the Sacred Valley from 500 to 900 CE The Killke civilization then lived in the Sacred Valley from 900 CE until the Incan Empire took over the region in 1420. The Incan Empire ruled this area until the arrival of the Spanish.