A Weekend In Cusco



Description:

There's a reason that Cusco and the Sacred Valley draw thousands upon thousands of visitors over the course of a year: it is jam packed with some of the most compelling historical sites, stunning landscapes and dreamy city scenes to be found anywhere in the world. Visitors with time to spare spend weeks, even months here while some people never leave. Everywhere you turn there is something new to absorb your imagination and captivate your senses. However not everyone has time to spare, and for that reason, this guide offers the best of Cusco's best, assuming that you plan to visit the unmissable Machu Picchu afterward. The one major drawback to spending just three days in town is the boleto turistico, the ticket that covers most of Cusco's attractions is valid for ten days. If you don't intend to come back to Cusco within ten days, consider buying a partial ticket which is valid for just one day and cram as much as you can into 24 hours! Welcome to Cusco, now get exploring!

Author: Matthew Barker


Saylla

user rating

Location:

17 km SE of Cusco
Cusco, Peru


Tipon y Pucará Pucutupampa

user rating

Location:

21 km SE of Cusco
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 23 5329


Cicciolina

user rating

Location:

Calle Triunfo 393 2nd floor
2nd floor
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 84 239 510


Los Perros

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Tecsecocha # 436
Cusco, Peru


Valle del Bajo Huatanay

user rating

Location:

35 from Cusco
Cusco, Peru


Hostal "Pensión Alemana"

Location:

Calle Tandapata 260
San Blas
Cuzco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 226861


Inka Grill

user rating

Location:

Portal de Panes 115
Plaza de Armas
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 262992
fax: 51 84 292696


Day 1 - Cusco


If in Cusco on a weekend trip, time is of a premium so spend your first day taking in the entire historical center - or as much of it as you can in one day! You can do this on foot, or else take a cab - especially if the altitude is affecting you. Start at the Plazade Armas , formerly the centerpiece of the entire Inca empire, but which was converted into a magnificent display of Spanish culture following the arrival of the conquistadors. Pay a visit to the 450 year old Cathedral which is built from original Inca stonework and drop into the church of La Compania de Jesus whose brilliance was toned down by no less than the Pope himself who decreed in 1650 that no church should rival the splendor of the main Cathedral. From here it's a short walk to Plus Cafe, an intimate and cosy place for a drink, a bite to eat and a chance to rest your legs. After lunch check out the Monastery of Santa Catalina, a quiet site with an impressive collection of art from the 'Cusco School'. Afterwards head to the Avenida El Sol area and the church of Santa Domingo. Here you can compare the engineering skills of the Inca stonemasons and the Spanish church builders: despite suffering numerous earthquakes over the years, the original Inca walls are as good as new, while the colonial facades have been repaired and replaced numerous times since the Spanish built their first church here. For dinner, pay a visit to Cicciolina, for a typically Peruvian menu boasting specialities from the Cusco region, and spend the night in the Royal Inka hotel, an affordable yet elegant and welcoming hotel in the heart of the city.


1

Plaza de Armas

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expert pick

Location:

Plaza de Armas
Cusco, Peru


2

Catedral (La)

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Triunfo
Plaza de Armas (north side)
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84222781


3

Compañía de Jesús

user rating

Location:

Plaza de Armas
Cusco, Peru


4

Plus Café

Location:

Portal de Panes 151
(2 do. piso)
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 23 2632


5

Santa Catalina

user rating

Location:

Santa Catalina Angosta 190
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 8422 6032


6

Santo Domingo

user rating

Location:

Avenida El Sol
(Plazoleta de Santo Domingo)
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84222071


7

Baco

user rating

Location:

Ruinas 465
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 242808


8

Royal Inka I

user rating

expert pick

Location:

299 Plaza Regocijo
Cusco, PE

Contact:

tel: 51 84 222284
fax: 51 84 234221


Day 2 - Cusco


Get an early start and head up the steep hill to the San Blas neighborhood, stopping to catch your breath and admire the stunning views. Enjoy the bohemian atmosphere and meandering streets before stopping by at SanBlas church followed by a visit to Moni, a brilliant Peruvian/vegetarian restaurant. After lunch take a cab to one of the many archaeological sites in and around the city.Sacsayhuaman is probably the most popular ruin and has a long, bloody history as the fort from which the Incas put up their last major resistance to the Spanish invasion. Enjoy an evening meal in cafe Varayoc and relax with a Pisco Sour in El Muki.


1

San Blas District

user rating

Location:

5 blocks north of Plaza de Armas
Begins roughly at Calle Choquechaca, as the neighborhood climbs into the hills
Cusco, Peru


2

San Blas Church

user rating

Location:

Plazoleta San Blas
Cusco, Peru


3

Moni Cafe Restaurant

Location:

San Agustin 311
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 23 1029


4

Sacsayhuaman

user rating

Location:

2 kms North of Cusco
Cusco, Peru


5

Huacoto

user rating

Location:

35 from Cusco
Cusco, Peru


6

Phuyupatamarca

user rating

Location:

Camino Inca
Cusco, Peru


7

Cafe Varayoc

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Espaderos 142
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 232404


8

El Muki

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Santa Catalina Angosta 114
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 253498


Day 3 - Urubamba, Cusco


Beyond Cusco lies the emerald Sacred Valley, which is as rich in history as it is in stunning, lush landscapes. The Sacred Valley is literally studded with archaeological sites and quaint Andean villages, and can either be explored by organized tour from Cusco (plenty to choose from in town, shop around for the best deal) or independently by bus using Cusco and Urubamba as your hub. Salinas, Moray, Ollantaytambo and Chinchero are all popular sites, but perhaps the best destination is the small town of Pisac, known for its quaint colonial buildings and dominated by an Inca fortress built into the mountainside. You can walk up to the citadel from the village along a 2 mile (steep) path, or else take a cab. This is one of the best places to see the famous agricultural terracing that kept the Inca empire well fed. If visiting on a Sunday, be sure to save time for Pisac's weekly market which draws vendors from across the region. Smaller craft markets are held throughout the rest of the week. You can catch a bus to Pisac from downtown Cusco, or else take an organised tour from one of the many companies in town. After your long day in this gorgeous landscape, head back to Cusco and unwind in Baco, a pleasant and relaxed wine bar in central Cusco.


1

Sacred Valley of the Incas (The)

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expert pick

Location:

Sacred Valley of the Incas
Urubamba, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 8426 3176 (Tourist Information)


4

Baco

user rating

expert pick

Location:

Ruinas 465
Cusco, Peru

Contact:

tel: 51 84 242808


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