Cusco is a city in Peruvian Andes with a rich history. This place used to be the capital of the great Inca Empire from the 13th to the 16th century when the Spanish took over. Nowadays, it's a starting point for visiting Machu Picchu, Choquequirao, Rainbow Mountain, the Sacred Valley, and many other destinations in the Southeast of Peru. Cusco is a great place to visit because it has a rich history, lively culture, beautiful buildings, and stunning scenery.
To visit Machu Picchu, you need to arrive in Cusco City. We recommend travelers arrive in Cusco at least 2 days before the trip to Machu Picchu. This time will help travelers to acclimatize to altitude. The recommended tours to take in Cusco before and after Machu Picchu are:
Days tour in Cusco before Machu Picchu
We recommend these tours because they will help you to participate in short hikes and help you with acclimatization. Also, you will not be going any higher than Cusco city and prepare for Machu Picchu.
You can visit Cusco city in half or full day: Explore San Pedro market, Plaza de Armas, Cathedral, the twelve angled stone street, Loreto Street, and Koricancha. All these places are possible to visit on a walking tour.
You can drive to Sacsayhuaman, Quenqo, PukaPukara, Tambomachay, and Mirador of Cristo Blanco to explore Cusco's surroundings. You should visit These places on day 1 or day 2 after you arrive in Cusco.
After exploring Cusco City, you can visit the Sacred Valley and explore Awanacancha Alpaca Center, Mirador Taray, Pisaq Ruins, Pisac Market, Urubamba, Ollantaytambo, and Chinchero. You can also combine Moray and Salineras of Maras on the same or separate days.
If you are traveling to Machu Picchu or Inca Trail, we recommend staying in Ollantaytambo. If you would like more information, please get in touch with us to explain why staying in Ollantaytambo is better than returning to Cusco.
Day Tours after Machu Picchu
These tours are at a higher altitude than Cusco City, which may increase the risk of altitude-related issues. Altitude problems before Machu Picchu can ruin your entire trip.
Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley:
Rainbow Mountain is one of the best day hikes in Cusco; we highly recommend you visit after your Machu Picchu tour. This amazing place is located over 5000 meters, and travelers can experience problems with the altitude. If you visit this p,kace after Machu Picchu, you will reduce the chances of altitude problems and fully enjoy Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley.
Similar to Rainbow Mountain, Humanity Lake is another day tour from Cusco located over 4000 meters, and it is highly recommended to climatize before taking this tour.
The Inca people built a bridge over the Apurimac River, the last one they built before they stopped. Qeswachaca is situated in the Qehue district of the Canas Province in the Cusco region.