This magical American city combines Hispanic legacy with Inca heritage, surprising the traveler every corner of the way. Cosmopolitan and captivating, it’s the perfect prelude to visit Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
Center of the Earth in the Andean Worldview and main city of the Spanish Colony, Cusco is a metropolis forged by Inca and European influences. Considered as one of the architectonic jewels of the world, it constitutes an excellent example of the cultural syncretism conformed by the rich miscegenation that occurred in Peru.
Cusco is one of those cities where you can find a fresh past and a captivating history between its walls and temples, and even in its inhabitants. The expansion of the Inca Empire began here some eight hundred years ago. The Incas worshipped this city, considering it as the “bellybutton of the universe” and designed from this point the trails that united the four suyos or sections of the Empire, which in turn represented the four corners of the world. From this city, governors decided upon the life of an immense and highly diverse nation, erecting sumptuous palaces that have resisted the passing of time.
Cusco is a city to explore on foot. Begin by visiting the beautiful temples, as these will allow you to experience the essence of the city’s history. Among these you’ll find the Cathedral and the temples of La Compañia, La Merced and Santo Domingo; all erected on top of splendid stone palaces belonging to the Incas, who once governed the Tahuantinsuyo. Surprise yourself with a notable Pre-Hispanic art collection in the Museum of Pre-Hispanic Art, enjoy the city’s fusion gastronomy that welcomes all influences, and load up on the energy of the pure Andean air.
Visiting Cusco is finding a piece of history in every corner, along with the fragments that compose the Andean people’s identity. A city that heads towards modernity, soaked by the spell of its past.
Cusco’s surroundings offer a diversity of excursions that allow the traveler to enter the magical world of Peruvian culture: the Sacsayhuaman Fortress, the Tambomachay Aqueducts, Pikillaqta, Tipon and the Temple of Andahuaylillas, just to name a few. We recommend visiting Cusco calmly, adopting its laidback rhythm so you can enjoy the wonders of a city where history hangs thick in the air.