Although the main attraction in this part of Peru is Machu Picchu, you shouldn’t neglect to visit Cusco’s other tourist destinations that, like Machu Picchu, carry in them the legacy of the Inca Empire. Scroll down for a look at four tourism destinations in Cusco you should visit during your time in the region.
The main attraction for Cusco-goers, this ancient Inca citadel is located about 80 km from the city of Cusco. It’s possible to reach the modern wonder of the world in a variety of ways. The site has been drawing tourists at rising numbers each year, including a few well-known figures.
The Inca Trail
The Inca Trail was a network of roads created by the Incas for transporting goods and messages throughout Tahuantinsuyo (the Inca Empire). Over the years, many sections of this vast network have been destroyed. One of the few sections that does remain is the famous Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. This trail connects Cusco to Machu Picchu and has become a famous trekking destination. The trek takes four days and finishes at the famous Inca citadel.
Also known as the “sister city” of Machu Picchu, this collection of archaeological remains was discovered less than 80 years ago. Today, only 30% of the entire citadel has been unearthed. As of 2011, the excavation of the monument has become a top priority for the regional government as it’s been deemed a valuable addition to tourism in Cusco. In Quechua, Choquequirao means “cradle of gold”, probably a good indication of how the site was used during the Inca period.
Today, the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu is an integral part of tourism in Cusco. Considered an alternative trek to the famous Inca Trail Trek, the Salkantay Trek gives adventurers an opportunity to climb to about 5,000 m.a.s.l. to one of the biggest mountains in existence. The Inca’s carved this path through treacherous mountain terrain to reach Machu Picchu, their ceremonial center.
Cusco contains all of these destinations and more, a nod to the region’s Inca legacy. Include one or several of these once-in-a-lifetime experiences in your trip to Peru and the Cusco region. For more information about each of these destinations, you can contact us here.