Base for tourists who want to visit the Inca ruins of Machu Picchu, the city of Cusco is surrounded by unmissable attractions and has a majestic architectural collection that is among the most beautiful in South America.
One of the most curious and mysterious countries in the world is in South America and is very close to Brazil. Nicknamed "The land of the Incas" the city of cusco it was conquered and colonized by Spain in the 16th century. Today, the country is one of the most sought after destinations by adventurers and the curious, who want to know the traces left by one of the most impressive civilizations in history.
The enigmatic city of cusco, is among the most visited destinations in South America and is a great base for adventurers who visit the country, seeking unique experiences in the sacred mountains of Peru. Cusco means “Navel of the World” in Quechua, and was once the capital of the Inca empire, today it is the most important administrative center in the world. Peru.
cusco is the base point for tourists who want to visit the archaeological site of Machu Picchu, One of the 7 wonders of the world. Declared a World Heritage Site in 1983 by UNESCO, the city enchants tourists with its imposing set of historic mansions, churches, palaces and squares, which form the old town center.
To get to know the Inca capital well, it is necessary to take at least two days to walk through the cobbled alleys and alleys of the center and other points of the city, such as the charming neighborhood San Blas. The old neighborhood concentrates the vast majority of artisans, plastic artists and bohemians who live in the city. In addition to souvenir shops and workshops, cusco offers numerous restaurant options, serving dishes from local cuisine and from different nationalities. Pubs, super interesting bars and a wide range of clubs are the favorite spots for tourists looking to enjoy the city's nightlife.
Besides Machu Picchu it is possible to know other tourist regions from cusco, like the Sacred Valley of the Incas, where you can better understand the dimension of pre-Columbian culture, visiting other important archaeological sites in the country such as Chinchero, Ollantaytambo and Pisac.
What to do in Cusco
San Blas neighborhood
the neighborhood of San Blas It is marked by the narrow cobbled streets, the number of good restaurants and the handicraft shops. Don't miss the Church of San Blas and the neighborhood lookout, which has one of the best views in the city.
12 angle stone
The Incas worked with the stones in an impressive way, being cut with different shapes that were stacked perfectly, without needing any type of mortar to seal the constructions, these buildings are so well built that they have remained firm until today.
The place was the most important time of the Inca empire and means “Place of Gold or Cabinet of Gold”. The site was built for the creator of the sun and became a place where the upper class of the Inca empire went to worship the sun and watch the stars. After the Spanish conquest, a church was built on the same site. Today the space has a museum that houses several prehistoric elements.
Located next to the Plaza de Armas, the museum brings together a gigantic collection of artifacts from the Inca period, such as fabrics, gold pieces, weapons, tools and even mummies!
San Pedro Central Market
Traditional market in the city, it has all the aromas and flavors of the country. A few minutes walk to the market and you will discover delicacies, food and drinks typical of Peru.
Plaza de Armas
Starting point to start a city tour, the square is surrounded by great restaurants, bars, tourist agencies and other essential attractions of the city such as the Cathedral of Cusco and the Inca Museum.
Saqsaywaman Archaeological Park
Also known as the Saqsaywaman fortress, the valuable archaeological site built with gigantic stones is located on top of the city of Cusco and for many years functioned as a ceremonial center.
Maras Salt Flats
The Salinas de Mara are made up of more than three thousand salt pans and have been in existence for more than two millennia. Even after so many years, the place continues to be a source of income for many families who live in the region and extract salt for sale.
Sacred Valley of the Incas
The Sacred Valley as a whole encompasses several cities and archaeological sites along the banks of the Urubamba River, passing through the cities of Pisac, Urubamba and Ollataytambo, each with impressive Inca ruins.
Other places to visit in Cusco:
- Quechua Museum
- Chocolate Museum
- Cusco Cathedral
- Church of San Blas
- San Sebastian Church
- Convent Santo Domingo
- Convent of Santa Catalina
- Cusco Planetarium
How to get to Cusco
Alejandro Velazco Astete International Airport in Cusco receives several daily flights from different Peruvian countries and cities.
Cusco is connected with numerous important highways in the country, being possible to reach from Lima, Nazca, Arequipa, Puno on Lake Titicaca and Porto Maldonado in the Peruvian Amazon region.
Distance from main cities:
Cusco to Lima (Capital): 1,153 km
Cusco to Ayacucho: 597 km
Cusco to Abancay: 198 km
Cusco to Arequipa: 623 km
Cusco to Puno: 389 km
Cusco to Puerto Maldonado: 532 km
There is a train service that connects the cities of Cusco, Puno and Arequipa. The route is Arequipa, Juliana, Puno and Cusco, completing 750km of railroad with an average duration of approximately 17 hours.
Best time to visit Cusco
Cusco basically has two main seasons: during the summer, from November to March, the climate is usually a little wetter, while during the months of April to October, the region gets drier and temperatures stabilize around 10°C during During the day, but at night, the thermometer drops drastically, reaching a thermal sensation of up to 0ºC during the dawn.
During the summer the region usually receives many heavy clouds and rain showers are more constant. The recommendation for those who intend to visit the destination between the months of June and August is to book the hotel in advance. The city receives tourists from the four corners of the world who arrive in droves due to the holidays.
. Another popular time to visit in cusco is in the month of June, when the religious festival is held Inti Raymi – celebrated since the time of the Incas.
Where to stay in Cusco
» The Land of the Incas: discover the main Peruvian tourist attractions
» Far beyond Machu Picchu: Inca ruins near Cusco
» Trail from Salkantay to Machu Picchu, one of the most beautiful treks in Peru
» Nazca Lines Peru's Most Mysterious Attraction
» Huacachina, an oasis in the middle of the desert in Peru
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