Patrick and I had headed straight to the Sacred Valley before attempting to visit Machu Picchu or spending any time in Cusco. Slow and steady was our motto and it’s the best way to adapt to the altitude. By the time we arrived in Cusco a week later, we had no problems with altitude sickness.
After a morning visiting the ruins in Salineras de Maras, Moray, and Pisac, Patrick and I finally arrived at our Airbnb in Cusco in the afternoon. We were centrally located not far from the Plaza de Armas in the old historical center. We took a quick look around the apartment and then went out to explore the town.
The sun was shining when we stepped back outside and the temperature was mild. A perfect day for a parade with children dressed up in different costumes, each group representing a different dance school.
We only had a few days to spend in Cusco, but we could’ve stayed for a month or longer. There was so much to see and do. There were plazas tucked away on side streets, barrios like San Blas to discover, restaurants to try, bars and cafés to sit and enjoy a Pisco sour, museums to visit, and the list goes on.
The city is everything one reads about and more, but you have to be there to feel the energy, it’s electric. People are everywhere, talking, eating, drinking, children playing, dogs wandering around freely (more about that in another post) traffic moving every which way, tourists snapping photos, and all under the watchful eye of the Cristo Blanco.
The next morning, we contemplated visiting another ruin, but Saksaywaman was walking distance from the center of town. Saksaywaman, by the way, is pronounced almost like Sexy Woman and it was the only ruin Patrick had no problem remembering how to say. (Hmm.) We hopped a cab and it’s a good thing we did because although it’s near the town, it’s all uphill and further than what most people say.
After Saksaywaman, we went to see the Cristo Blanco on the hill. At night it’s a beautiful sight to behold from the main square. It reminded me of the Cristo Redentor in Rio and Mount Cristo Rey in El Paso, Texas.
Maya Muses: Our time in Cusco was much too short. Like the Sacred Valley, it’s a place Patrick and I would love to return to one day and really get to know. We had a small taste of what the people were like and the beautiful surroundings and we definitely want more!
Photo Credits: Personal Photos