Monday, July 13, 2009

Just another Monday morning in Cusco

During the week Cusco is a completely different city than on the weekend where you will find mostly tourists roaming the streets looking for alpaca duds and pisco sours. What used to be bare streets were now packed with Peruvians following their daily routine of going to work, waiting for the bus, walking their kids to school, or snatching a part of the sidewalk where they will sell some food or handicrafts to strolling pedestrians. It was a nice change to not only be surrounded by tourists like myself, but rather a group of people who live in this city. They aren't stopping at every corner to bask at the sites, but rather they pass by the Plaza de Armas giving a cursory glance of recognition. After all they see it everyday. By being around locals you may perhaps be given a glimpse of how people really live their lives; if you're lucky.

Shoe shiners in Cusco

People waiting for the bus

Cusco is small and easy to manage, especially if you compare it to the capital Lima. The Plaza de Armas is the most distinctive image of Cusco city. Most travel paraphernalia plasters pictures of the plaza and the cathedral througout many of its pages. My second day in Cusco I was considerably less winded from the lack of oxygen in the air and made use of some time to myself to stroll the Plaza and sit at the steps of the Cathedral. My visit thus far had been filled with colonial influenced buildings and Catholic tradition. The Plaza de Armas was no different, however I knew that in a few days I would be looking out at a completely different marvel, one that had nothing to do with colonial influence. Machu Picchu, the lost civilization, would not have domed bell towers, ornate balconies, or elaborate Gothic paintings of the Resurrection. There would be no carved crosses or images of the Virgin Mary. Both cultures so different yet an indelible part of Peruvian culture.

Below is a map of the main sites in Cusco as well as some photos of what you should be looking for.

Map of sites in Cusco provided by Frommers.

Iglesia de la Compañia de Jesus


Convento de la Merced

Iglesia de San Blas


  1. Hi there
    We have a lot of similar interests and I was wondering if you’d take a look at my new travel/ fashion/ random blog & maybe follow it if you like what you see.

    P.S. How come you travel to all these cool places? Is it part of a job or just for fun?

  2. So gorgeous! Cusco is definitely on my list of places to visit before I die...

  3. Thank you! I travel because I love it but I also travel as a writer and photographer. I'm always happy to get feedback and check out other sites as well. Thanks again.