Birthplace of the world
Seductive, striking and natural, Cusco’s history lives in its streets, squares, valleys and towns.Stunning destinations and examples of fine engineering by Inca stonemasons can be seen in Choquequirao, Saysayhuamán, Kenko, Tambomachay, Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu, the Inca jewel built with the wisdom of the ancient Peruvians in an ecological environment. Captivating landscapes such as the Sacred Valley, where the mountains are clothed by terraces.
Pictures villages where the past forms part of the present. Cusco really is the birthplace of the world (The Incas deemed this spot the belly button of the world) . A visit to Cuzco tumbles you back into the cosmic realm of ancient Andean culture – knocked down and fused with the colonial splendors of Spanish conquest, only to be repackaged as a thriving tourist mecca. Yet Cuzco is only the gateway. Beyond lies the Sacred Valley, Andean countryside dotted with villages, high altitude hamlets and ruins linked by trail and railway tracks to the continent’s biggest draw – Machu Picchu.
Old ways are not forgotten here. Colorful textiles keep vivid the past as do the wild fiestas and carnivals where pagan tradition meets solemn Catholic ritual. A stunning landscape careens from Andean peaks to orchid-rich cloud forests and Amazon lowlands. Explore it on foot or by fat tire, rafting wild rivers or simply braving the local buses to the remote and dust-worn corners of this far-reaching, culturally rich department.