Cusco – The gateway to Machu Picchu
Many roads lead to Rome, ähhh Machu Picchu …
If you look at a hostel and another guest tells you a big fat „NO“ twice then you leg it and disappear.
We were not well prepared for Cusco. The variety of hotels had led to no results and we just wanted to leave most decisions to the spur of the moment. Unfortunately it is no fun running around with our luggage and so we decided to check in the Kokopelli after a few bad hotels. After Paracas we didn’t want to stay in this hostel again, but everyone deserves a second chance. And this was used.
„You do not find your way,
The way will find you“
After the hostel odyssey we enjoyed a great breakfast at Jack’s Cafe above the Plaza de Armas. Jugos, cappuccinos and sandwiches earn an award here. We were happy like children at Christmas. After we had filled our stomachs we started planning for Machu Picchu. Luckily we had some information from Jessica and Anja, otherwise we would not see the wood for the palm trees because there are so many different ways to get to Machu Picchu. After dithering a long time between Inca Rail, Peru Rail and Bus Agency we decided for a combination of bus and train.
More about our tour to Machu Picchu can be found here:
On the day after our return we could tackle it quite relaxed. We grabbed a taxi and drove to the ruins of Sacsayhuaman (the Quechua name sounds like „sexy woman“, meaning „satisfied falcon“). Since the prices in the Lonely Planet are not up to date and it no longer takes 10 Sol but 70 Sol we decided to go around the sight. In our view it was adequate and leads to the Christ statue across the fields. Here you have a beautiful view on the entire city.
Itchy Feet tip: In Cusco and surrounding areas you should give thought to what attractions you want to visit before. Since it is not possible to purchase single tickets any more, choosing the right combination tickets is crucial. Prices range between 70 and 130 Sol.
From Christ statue it is not necessary to take the taxi back to the city, you can take the stairs to go through the neighborhood, „San Blas“ like we did. Here you can stroll through the narrow streets and enjoy the tranquility.
Itchy Feet insider: Visit the Cafe L’atelier at the corner of Carmen Alto / Atocsaycuchi and indulge yourself in a piece of homemade cake – the Lemonpie is a dream. In addition to fresh juices and great coffee you can buy here also handmade jewelry and leather goods.
The next day we took a collectivo to the surrounding areas of Cusco. Our destination was the Salineras de Maras (salt terraces). These thousand saltpans have been used for the recovery of this spice since the Inca period. There Tina, as the largest salt lover, insisted on taking salt in sufficient quantities. In Chinchero we inserted a small stopover. This typical Andean village was regarded as the birthplace of the rainbow by the Incas. Here we visited the Sunday market which has a huge selection of stands and therefore each tourist’s heart beats faster.
During the night we went to Puno at Lake Titicaca by bus.
Salutes from far away,
Tina & Andi from Itchy Feet