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The Best of Cusco to Visit

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The Best of Cusco to Visit

Are you looking for the best of Cusco to explore? From the UNESCO World Heritage Site, charming churches and monasteries, and Incan ruins, to stunning pubs and bars, Cusco is Peru’s multi-faceted cultural hub.

Although Cusco is a relatively small city, there are plenty of sites to explore. Most tourists will quickly visit the main sights but there are still lots of hidden gems that the locals know about. This guide will provide the best options for a 3-day exploration of the Historic Center of Cusco.

Day 1: Exploring the Historic Center of Cusco

The best place to start is by visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The sight includes four main areas, namely the Sacsayhuamán Fortress, the archeological sites of Qenqo, Pukapukara and Tambomachay. Entry tickets cost 10 soles per person and visitors should allocate at least three hours to explore the site.

Next, visitors can walk along the main Avenida El Sol towards Plaza de Armas. The plaza features a large fountain which symbolizes the Incan origin of Cusco. On the edges of plaza stands Sabandia Guillen church, here visitors can also experience a guided tour through traditional colonial art galleries. Moving further along Avenida El Sol, tourists will reach La Compania Church, which is renowned for its gold-plated interior.

After spending a few hours exploring monuments, head over to San Blas neighborhood for lunch and afternoon snack. The locals know this place as the `barrio de los artesanos` and it is filled with restaurants and artisan souvenir shops. It’s an excellent destination for lunch or dinner, where visitors can sample rustic Peruvian cuisine.

Once you’ve filled your belly, you can check out Plaza de San Blas. It is home to some of the oldest colonial buildings in Peru as well as lots of traditional souvenir stores. As you walk around the small lanes here you can sip some mate de coca or buy some colorful local handicrafts.

End your day by checking out some of the popular pubs and bars in Cusco. The best ones are located within walking distance from Plaza de Armas such as Otra Cosa Bar which has become a hotspot in the city since it opened its doors in 2014. Here you can grab some cocktails or beers while listen to live music from local bands – every night a different band!

Day 2: Visiting San Pedro Market and exploring local neighborhoods

Start your day with a visit to San Pedro market. This market is well known among locals for its fresh produce and bright colors. There’s also plenty of Pre-Incan artifacts here so make sure to haggle a good deal if you want to pick up something special! For lunch, head towards Tinke restaurant, whose name pays homage to Incan cuisine.

After lunch and shopping session, take a walk around Limacoway Street which dates back to 1540 and is one of the oldest streets in Cusco. Every house here has a unique history and you can also check out some unique souvenirs while exploring Limacoway street.

You can then move along San Lázaro Street and enter San Bartolomé neighborhood where you can explore some of the oldest houses of Cusco city. There are also several churches here, so don’t forget to check out these architectural wonders as you explore this historic part of the city.

End the day by visiting Ismael Pena Bembibre street where you’ll find many traditional handicraft stores on sale. Here you can negotiate a better price for souvenirs and go back home with some traditional Peruvian handicrafts.

Day 3: Taking a day trip from Cusco

On your third day in Cusco you can explore further outwards by taking a day trip to nearby villages such as Pitumarca or Ollantaytambo. Or, if you have an adventurous spirit, try trekking or mountain biking around Sacsayhuamán ruins situated close to Cusco city center.

Another interesting road trip to take is to Chincheros village where you will be able to observe traditional architecture and farming support practices which date back thousands of years before the Incas were once dominant in this region. Here, visitors can also sample traditional Andean foods such as rocotos rellenos, which is stuffed red peppers usually served with a creamy cheese sauce. Visitors should certainly not miss the opportunity to catch a glimpse of how people here still practice their prehistoric customs!


Cusco is a fascinating destination as visitors get to explore centuries-old remains of ancient civilizations while also getting to experience modern day culture through its food and locals. There are plenty of interesting sites to explore be it on an organized tour or by doing it DIY while exploring nooks and crannies of this beautiful city. So make sure to check out this travel guide – Places to Visit in Cusco – while planning your travel itinerary to make sure you don’t miss out on any-must see places when in Peru!

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The Best of Cusco to Visit

Experience Adventure Like Never Before: Book Your Tour Today!