Cusco was the capital of the Inca’s Empire. Nowadays, Cusco is a cosmopolitan city, located about 10,800 feet above sea level, where you will be able to find the best of the Peruvian culture. The mysticism of Cusco will make you feel as if you are in a different world. Most people arriving to Cusco for one or two days go back home regretting their choice. There is never enough time while in Cusco because it is a city where archeologists are constantly discovering original Inca walls, buildings, and sometimes pre-Inca structures.
In Cusco, you will be able to visit Pre-Inca, Inca, and Colonial buildings and one of the new wonders of the new world, Machu Picchu. Cusco City offers several conventional tours. The most popular are the City tour, the Sacred Valley of the Incas tour, and the Machu Picchu tour. Please find below a description of these tours.
The City tour includes a visit to the Cathedral; the Qoricancha Temple; the fortress of Sacsayhuaman; and the ruins of Qenqo, Puca Pucara, and Tambomachay. The Cathedral was built between 1560 and 1669. At the Cathedral you will be able to observe painting and handcrafts of the famous School of art of Cusco. During Inca times, the Qoricancha was the Temple of the Sun, but once Spaniards arrived in Cusco they destroyed part of the temple and built the Convent of Santa Catalina. The fortress of Sacsayhuaman is an amazing Inca building built with gigantic stones to form big walls in zigzags. Nowadays the Inti Raymi is celebrated here. Qenqo was a sacred site during Inca times. In Qenqo you will be able to observe a sculpted altar. It is believed that Puca Pucara was a small hunting Inca lodge. Tambomachay is known as the Inca’s bath and it is believed that it represents a center of water worship.
The Sacred Valley of the Incas tour will take you through the Urubamba Valley. The Urubamba River crosses the valley which is surrounded by colorful mountains and Inca terraces. Terraces, water ducts, ruins, and a great view of the valley can be observed. The next stop will be the marketplace of Pisac where you will be able to purchase the artwork created by Cusco natives. Your final stop will be the town of Ollantaytambo. In Ollantaytabo the Incas built the fortress of the same name. Ollantaytambo is a magical place where spending a night before starting the Inca Trail is a plus.
If you are an adventurist, there are a few treks to choose from as well as whitewater rafting in the Urubamba River with class I, II, and III rapids. The most popular activity in Cusco is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. If you would like to read some information about the Inca Trail, please click here.
We invite you to review our selection of Inca Trail and Machu Picchu Tours