The Inca Trail – Arrival in Cusco

Looking across the rooftops of Cusco as far as the barriadas in the distance

We left London Heathrow on the 22.40 p.m. flight bound for Bogota where we would catch a plane to Lima and from Lima onward to our final destination of Cusco in the Peruvian mountains. Arriving the following morning in the former Inca capital of Southern Peru we had a day to explore this utterly charming city despite suffering from some awful jet-lag.

Cusco Streets
The typically steep street leading up to our hostel in Cusco
Our hostel in Cusco
Inside the quiet and green atrium of our hostel in Cusco

Our hostel was just a short slap away from the main square – the Plaza de Armas. This square is home to some stunning architecture left behind by both the Inca and Spanish colonial empires that both made Cusco their capital city.

Plaza de Armas
The Spanish built Basilica Cathedral – Cusco
Santo Domingo Cathedral - Cusco
The impressive Santo Domingo Cathedral – Cusco

At an altitude of 3400 metres we took it fairly easy in order to acclimatise to the rarefied air. We milled around the many shops and markets in the centre of the old town and wandered around the many side streets and alleyways touching and admiring the magnificent Incan stonework foundations we came across.

Cusco Coffee Shop
A typical colonnaded Coffee Shop situated on the Plaza de Armas

In the evening we relaxed in one of the excellent restaurants that overlooked the square followed by an early night. Tomorrow we would travel up the Sacred Valley to the trailhead at Ollantaytambo in preparation to start the four day Inca Trail.

Next in this series of travel dispatches – The Inca Trail – Along The Sacred Valley


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