Every year, more small, tourist-oriented cafes and restaurants pop up in Ollantaytambo to cater to the crowds that hang out in the day and increasingly spend the night here. If you’re staying in Ollanta and don’t mind a drive, you might also consider catching a taxi to one of the fine restaurants along the main road from Urubamba to Ollantaytambo; see “Where to Eat in Urubamba,” earlier in this section.
One of my favorite spots in Ollantaytambo is Cafe Mayu ★ and the El Albergue Restaurant ★★, Estación de Tren Ollantaytambo (www.elalbergue.com; tel. 084/204-014), part of the El Albergue hotel. The attractive cafe, which looks like it’s been around much longer than it has, features homemade pastas (such as fettuccine with three Andean cheeses), quinoa and other salads, and tasty sandwiches. It also serves excellent breakfasts and great coffee, which they roast themselves, and a locally famous brownie with vanilla ice cream. The chefs can set up a pachamanca lunch at its farm ★★ with advance notice. Additionally, it runs a cafeteria and a small stand on the train platform (after entering through the gate) where you can have craft beer from Cervecería del Valle or locally roasted coffee, or pick up a boxed lunch that you can take with you to Machu Picchu (and it will be better than anything else you can pick up along the way). It opens at 5am to service the first train passengers. On Ollanta’s plaza, the same team opened Chuncho ★★★ (www.fb.com/chunchoperu; tel. 084/204-014) in 2018. This is one of the best dining destinations in the Sacred Valley, with their own takes on regional dishes using mostly organic ingredients from their farm, plus cocktails made with their own cañazo, a regional sugarcane-based spirit that they distill themselves, along with an herbal liquor and whiskey, in their small distillery near the hotel, Destileria Andina ★★ (www.destileriaandina.com). You can ask at Chuncho or at Cafe Mayu for directions to the distillery for a tasting.
Another good choice, although simple and unadorned, is Hearts Café ★, in a new location on Av. Ventiderio s/n (tel. 084/436-726), begun by a British woman, Sonia Newhouse, who operates an NGO that works with highland community women and children—to which all profits of this restaurant are donated. Besides feeling good about spending your soles here, it’s a cozy little spot for breakfast (served all day), sandwiches, empanadas, fruit juices, and full, good-value dinners. On the plaza, La Esquina Café Bakery ★ (tel. 084/204-078) is a lively spot run by a husband and wife team with local coffees, craft beer, and hearty breakfasts and lunch specials. They have a great veggie burger and house-baked sweets like cakes and cinnamon rolls.
Puka Rumi, Av. Beniterio s/n (tel. 084/204-091), is a little bar/cafe run by a friendly woman named Rufina, serving everything from eggs to churrasco (steaks) and chicken; it’s especially good for a cold beer on the tiny terrace.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.