Peru
Plaza de Armas Cusco

Here you’ll find travel reports about Plaza de Armas Cusco. Discover travel destinations in Peru of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

139 travelers at this place:

  • Day75

    Rainbow Mountain

    May 23 in Peru

    Bereits um 03:30 Uhr wurde ich abgeholt, um dann während mehr als 2 Stunden andere Passagiere aufzuladen (offiziell sollte es nicht so lange dauern, aber es schien auch niemanden gross zu überraschen).
    Nach einem Frühstücks-Stopp und knapp 4 Stunden Fahrt erreichten wir den Ausgangspunkt der Wanderung. Es zeigte sich, dass ich trotz meines Aufenthalts auf Meereshöhe nicht das ganze Wandertraining auf über 4'400 - 5'200 m.ü.M. verloren hatte. Als eine der Ersten unserer Gruppe bestaunte ich dann also den berühmten Rainbow Mountain. Nach allem, was ich gelesen hatte, stellte ich mich auf einen nüchternen Eindruck ein und war umso mehr begeistert, wie farbig der Berg wirklich ist. Das ganze Panorama rundherum ist aber mindestens genau so beeindruckend - trotz Schweisstropfen und dünner Luft - es hat sich VOLL und GANZ gelohnt.

    Zurück im Hotel hatte ich noch eine Stunde Zeit, bevor es um 21:30 nun endgültig heisst, Abschied zu nehmen von Cusco 😓
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  • Day7

    Cusco freier Tag

    July 27 in Peru

    Oh so viel passiert, ich komme gar nicht hinterher.
    Cusco als Stadt, schön und schmutzig, Autos verpesten die Luft. Architektur geprägt vom Kolonialstil, in der Umgebung dann diverse “Tambos“ (Ruheplätze der Inkas).
    1996 Beginn des Tourismus, ca. 300.000 Touristen p.a.
    Heute 2.000.000 Touristen, Tendenz steigend.
    Politik ist spannend, überall sind Polizisten, Militär nur zu den vielen Paraden, bei denen grundsätzlich Studentenproteste sein sollen, die aber kaum sichtbar sind.
    Im Oktober sind Wahlen, daher ist alles mit Werbung zugekleistert. Anscheinend besteht Wahlpflicht, kein Wahlrecht, denn es gibt Strafen bei Nichtwahl, fragt sich, ob die Ergebnisse echt sind.
    Gehe den Tag entspannt an, Streetfood, Schokoladenmuseum und eins der vielen Inkamuseen. Auf einem Platz im Künstlerviertel schreibe ich Postkarten und werde permanent angequatscht von den Händlern. Und von Luis.
    Luis kommt aus dem Norden Perus, wo es wohl Küste gibt, denn er ist Surfer. Überall mit Prä-Inka-Tatoos verziert, will er wissen, was ich so mache.
    Das alles auf spanisch, denn englisch kann er noch nicht.
    Und er erzählt von sich: Anfang 30, in der Welt zu Hause. Wenn er arbeiten will, arbeitet er, wenn nicht, dann nicht. Er war 3 Monate in Finnland und spricht finnisch. War 5 Jahre in Brasilien und spricht portugiesisch. Jetzt ist er zwei Monate in Cusco, denn unter anderem macht er Martial Arts und ein besonderer Lehrer ist gerade hier. Eigentlich ist es ihm auch zu kalt in Cusco.
    Als ich von meinem bevorstehenden Trip in 5000 Meter und der Angst vor der Kälte berichte, zögert er nicht, und bietet mir an, von zu Hause eine warme Jacke zu holen, wenn ich sie zurück gebe.
    Unglaublich, aber wahr, ich begleite ihn in sein Viertel, bekomme zwischendurch doch etwas Angst vor der eigenen Courage. Man weiß ja nie.
    Aber alles gut, ich warte vor seinem Haus und genieße einen herrschaftlichen Blick über die Stadt. Und gehe zurück ins Hotel mit warmer Jacke 💓
    Als Dank will ich ihm auch eine Postkarte aus Lübeck schreiben, denn das findet er total toll. Nur, dass er keinen Briefkasten hat, denn hier muss man wohl dafür bezahlen. Also werde ich sie wahrscheinlich an irgendjemanden in einem Restaurant in der Nähe schicken müssen ^^
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  • Day10

    Cusco letzter Tag

    July 30 in Peru

    Der letzte Tag in Cusco, bevor es in den Amazonas Dschungel geht, wo es weder WLAN, noch Strom gibt. Naja, Strom gibt es doch, aber nur zwischen 17 Uhr und 20 Uhr.
    In meinem Kombiticket sind noch unheimlich viele Museen enthalten, am Ende schaffe ich nur drei, glaube aber, das reicht auch.
    Die Geschichte Perus ist sehr interessant , aber was die Museen daraus machen hält sich in Grenzen. Was alle gemeinsam haben, ist dass man keine Fotos machen darf, was die Anzahl der Bilder beschränkt. Und in den Museen herrscht die christliche Kolonialisierung vor.
    Inka oder Prä-Inka Geschichte? Fehlanzeige.
    Im Museum zeitgenössischer Kunst gibt es Bilder zu sehen, wie man sie auch auf der Straße kaufen kann. Alles in allem halte ich mich lieber selber auf der Straße auf und beobachte die Leute und das Tagesgeschehen.
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  • Day17

    Cusco was not only the capital of the entire Incan Empire, but the street layout of the city is based on the outline of the Puma- one of the sacred animals of the Incas. Even today you can clearly see the outline in the street pattern. On this outline the main plaza (The Plaza de Armas) constitutes the stomach of the Puma and the huge Incan fort of Sacsayhuaman constitutes the head.

    This fort was once a huge fortified stronghold to defend the city, but when the Spaniards came they destroyed the city of Cusco and the impressive fort. Today only about 20% of the original structure remains, the rest was carried away to rebuild the city and to construct the 13 large churches and cathedrals that dominate the city centre. Even so, the remains of Sacsayhuaman (pronounced "sexy woman") are still breathtaking.

    Our plan for our first full day in Cusco was to continue our process of acclimatisation by exploring some more of the city and the numerous ruins that still remain. Our first stop was at the 9 m high statue of Christ that is perched high on one of the nearby hills. With arms outstretched this statue is a little like the much larger and more famous one that dominates Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.

    We then spent the next few hours exploring Sacsayhuaman. In order to enter the fort we had to make our way through a dark and very claustrophobic tunnel through the rock. This would have been easy for the diminutive Incans, but quite hazardous for much taller westerners. The new bumps on my head will be reminder of this experience.

    It was then a downhill drive back to Cusco for lunch, followed by a tour of the oldest colonial cathedral. This was built on the site of the Incan palace, out of materials plundered from the destroyed fort and temples. It is now filled with literally tonnes of gold and silver, ornate carvings and numerous images of Mary, especially remodelled to appear like the Incan Mother Goddess of the Earth.

    By late afternoon I was getting very tired and returned to my hotel and set about destroying my room. Well not exactly the whole room, in fact just the top sheet on my bed. In all fariness it was not my fault. After all, how was I to know that the pen I was about to open was still pressurised to sea level ? When I popped the cap off the pen, blue ink sprayed forth all over the brilliant white sheet. All I could do was look on in horror and try to think of what to do next. After the surprise wore off, I decided that there was nothing I could do, except leave it there for all to see. Oh well, worse things can happen.

    Later in the day we met the rest of our cycling guides - Jimmy and Diego. Tomorrow morning we will be getting on the bikes and then we will find out just how much the altitude has reduced us to cycling ruins.

    The weather has continued to be fine and clear. During the day the sun shines with a vengeance and at night the temperatures drop quickly under a clear starry sky. As we walked the plaza after dark we were mesmerised by the beauty of the lights on all the surrounding mountains. It looked like some sort of beautiful Christmas light display. It is only a pity that pictures can never do such moments justice - you simply have to be there.
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  • Day16

    The flight from Lima to Cusco takes about 75 mins by plane, however we have been told that the same journey takes 24 hours by road. As I gazed from my plane window down at the rugged terrain below, it was very easy to see why this would be the case.

    For the traveller the main challenge of taking this short flight is the extreme gain in altitude in such a short time. While Lima is obviously at sea level, Cusco sits at an oxygen starved altitude of 3500 metres. The flight is spectacular and the landing at the small airport is enough to keep the knuckles white. Fortunately we landed safely although the sudden impact with the runway would have only scored a 3/10 on the pilot's skill scale.

    We were met at the baggage carousel by a diminutive Peruvian who introduced himself as "Abel Puma" and then ushered us to the waiting bus. "Do not exert yourselves today", he advised. We didn't need any encouragement to move slowly as our heads were already spinning and our lungs gasping as we made our way along.

    Our hotel is situated right in the centre of town, right next to the Plaza Major and the ancient cathedral. All around are reminders that Cusco was the magnificent capital of the entire Incan Empire. This empire flourished and spread for around 500 years, before it was almost wiped out by the Spanish in the 1500s. This city will also become our base of operations for the next few days. Our first task ? To acclimatise to the thin air.

    After our arrival at the hotel we decided to walk (stagger) to the nearby Plaza to search for somewhere to have lunch. We found a balcony cafe with a panoramic view of the plaza and the surrounding mountains and settled down for our first high altitude meal. For one of our group, the pressures of the past two days has already proven to be too much, so he decided to stay flat on his back in the hotel instead.

    Cusco reminds me of a frontier town, lacking the polish and sophistication of a modern city, but absolutely steeped in history and folklore. The legacy of the Incas is all around with many of the current buildings actually built on the solid foundations crafted by the Incas over 500 years previously. It is also favoured by the neo hippy types that wander the streets in search of hash. I had not walked far before I was asked several times if I wanted to "buy some weed".

    My wanderings were cut short as I only lasted a couple of hours later before exhaustion overcame me as well and I headed back for a rest.

    After an evening briefing by our cycling guide we walked a short distance to a nearby restaurant for dinner. Without our presence the place would have had a quiet night as we were the only ones there. As I ate my meal I gazed at the huge mural that covered the wall of the restaurant. It depicted Mother Earth supplying the needs of the people and was liberally highlighted with shining gold sections. I suggested that David could paint a similar mural on his living room wall when he gets home, but he looked back at me with glazed eyes. I think he needs sleep.

    On the walk back to the hotel I heard the unmistakable sounds of a talented busker singing a succession of Bob Marley songs. I had jokingly asked earlier in the day when we were going to hear Bob Marley and here he was. This music was a feature of all our early Ghostrider overseas rides and I took this as a favourable omen for the success of this trip. I could hear the music long after I returned to my room.

    Compared to the smog and humidity of Lima, the weather in Cusco is clear and dry at this time of the year. I think the pattern will be warm days and chilly nights under the Andean skies.
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  • Day18

    After a couple of days of acclimatisation to the high altitude, it was time for the hour of reckoning. Today was the time for us to get our first taste of cycling the Sacred Valley of the Incas. After a short bus ride to the outskirts of the city we were introduced to our bikes for the first time. To our great relief they were high end Specialised brand bikes with dual suspension and hydraulic brakes.

    As it was the first time that most of us had ever ridden a dual suspension bike, they did take a little getting used to, but soon we were looking for potholes in which to test how good the bikes were.

    We didn't have long to wait because most of the day's ride was along very rough back roads, liberally covered with rocks and culverts. The enormous tyres and the suspension certainly worked well, although most of our lungs did not work so well. Every time we encountered a hill our hearts and lungs went into overdrive, gasping for every molecule of oxygen we could catch.

    For the third day in a row we were favoured with blue skies and a very warm sun. The warm clothing we had packed was quickly discarded and the sunscreen was applied thickly. At this altitude it is very easy to become very badly sunburnt in a short space of time.

    We bounced and puffed our way along a succession of rough dirt roads and through some small settlements. In these places our progress was closely monitored by numerous stray dogs that barked menacingly each time we approached them. We had previously been warned that, in the event of a dog attack, we were to stop and take refuge behind our bike. Fortunately this strategy was never put to the test.

    After a couple of hours of cycling we stopped for lunch beside a beautiful lake in the sacred valley and then were driven to the top of a nearby hill to wander some extensive pre Incan ruins.

    We knew that the final two members of our team were due to arrive in Cusco today. Steve and Gil Wilson had to attend a family wedding in the UK and were taking the long and circuitous route from Manchester to Cusco to join us for the rest of our time in South America. Each time a plane flew overhead we imagined that it could be them on board.

    It was only when we arrived back at our hotel we heard just what a trying time they had experienced. Not only had they been in continuous transit for over thirty hours, visiting Manchester, Helsinki, New York and Lima along the way, but their final flight from Lima to Cusco had been altered. This meant that they did not know that someone would be waiting for them on arrival in Cusco. They proceeded through the airport and caught a taxi instead.

    That would have been OK, except for the fact that our hotel had also been changed and, when they arrived at the original hotel, they found it locked and bolted. This was not the welcome they had been looking forward to after such an horrendous time in the air. After a series of phone calls they eventually arrived at the correct hotel some four hours later. Although this was not the start they had been wanting, they took it in surprisingly good spirits and are looking forward to begin their own personal acclimatisation process.

    Tomorrow we head to Olantaytambo where the more serious riding will begin.

    In case you might have been wondering what had happened after my unfortunate incident with the exploding blue pen in my hotel room, I can now complete the story. After an unsuccessful personal attempt to remove the ink, I gave up, carefully folded the sheet on top of my bed and wrote a letter of apology to the cleaning staff. To add some extra gravitas to my apology I added a crying face at the bottom to emphasise that I was truly sorry for my sins. I expected to return to my room and be welcomed with a stern letter of rebuke and a hefty invoice. I found neither of these. My room and bed was made up and my stained sheet replaced with a pristine new white one. I have learnt my lesson.
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  • Day27

    One inevitable thing that happens to me when I travel is that I find myself going to bed earlier and earlier and waking up earlier and earlier. After two weeks in South America I now seem to find it impossible to sleep any later than 5 am. Of course that also means that I am seldom up later than 9 pm in the evening.

    This morning was no exception. I found myself wide awake a little before 5 am. Of course my waking was probably precipitated by the loud shouting, detonation of huge fireworks and beating of big drums right outside my bedroom window. I pulled aside the blinds to see what was going on. Of course, today was the city wide strike and it looked like some of the strikers had decided to get to their business of celebration before the sunrise.

    As the small procession made its way down the street past our hotel I could not help but reflect on how different things are here. The protesters certainly didn't look too angry to me, it looked like they were actually having fun. I found myself really looking forward to a relaxed day in Cusco. If anything is going to happen here, it always happens in the central Plaza and our hotel is ideally situated right at the corner of the plaza.

    Since sleep had now well and truly evaporated I got up and went for an early walk. Already the police were setting up road blocks and taking up strategic positions. I guess they had to be prepared for any eventuality, however remote. It seemed somewhat innocuous that the line of heavily armed police, complete with batons and riot shields were actually allowing themselves to be included in people's selfies.

    The sun rose to reveal another beautiful sunny day, just like the previous 13 days we have had in this country. One of my favourite pastimes when travelling is to just find a vantage point and watch people in action. Since this was our first "free day" it was the perfect opportunity to do just that.

    I sat on a chair in the plaza, enjoying the warm morning sunshine. All around me the shops of the plaza were shut tight, but the wandering vendors were doing a brisk trade. Young (and not so young) travellers waved their selfie sticks trying to find that elusive holy grail of the perfect selfie. Nearby I could hear the sounds of drums and whistles approaching. It turned out to be the first of many small groups of workers marching to the central square.

    As each group entered the plaza they clapped, shouted, blew their plastic horns and seemed to have an all round good time. The vendor selling plastic horns also seemed to be doing a brisk trade. Onlookers held their cameras high trying to catch another selfie with themselves in front of the workers. The police smiled and looked relaxed. Just another sunny day in Cusco.

    All this watching made me hungry so I bought a delicious sweet treat from a wandering vendor. It cost me 2 Sols (about 80 cents) and it was worth every cent.

    More groups entered the plaza and the police presence was strengthened. Maybe this will get interesting I thought, however the demonstrators seemed to be enjoying the sunshine just as much as me and soon they just disappeared into the surrounding streets. The riot police smiled and chatted and then eventually drive away. If it was a strike it was a very half hearted one.

    I read later in the day that Peru had actually suffered several earthquakes in various places in the past 24 hours. I hadn't felt any of them. I almost wished I had as it would have added some extra colour to the final day in Cusco.

    It is now 7.30 pm (almost time for bed). Outside there are still a few loud fireworks going off. Maybe they were left over from the demonstration that fizzled out before it actually got started.

    Tomorrow we have another very early start as we begin the long journey south to Puno and the famous Lake Titicaca.
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  • Day130

    Cusco, centre du monde inca

    September 20, 2017 in Peru

    Nous prenons un bus de nuit pour rejoindre Cusco...  mon état n'est pas terrible mais le trajet se passe bien. A notre arrivée il pleut du coup aujourd'hui c'est repos histoire de récupérer.

    Le lendemain on explore la ville mais ici tout est payant donc on observera les églises et autres de l'extérieur. On peut déjà observer la technique de construction pierre contre pierre sur plusieurs murs de la ville et c'est impressionnant. Notamment la fameuse pierre à 12 angles, gardée par un chef inca.
    Par chance on tombe sur une fête Inca et on assiste au spectacle d'une cérémonie en plein centre ville (ça chante, ça danse,...)
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  • Day15

    Busfahrt nach Cusco

    December 11, 2017 in Peru

    Mit dem Bus ging es von Nazca nach Cusco. So weit, so gut. Wenn man bedenkt, dass der Bus dabei die Anden überquert und Cusco auf 3400 Metern liegt, wird die Sache schon aufregender. Der höchste Pass, über den wir mussten, liegt auf 4.800 Metern. Ein bisschen Respekt hatten wir vor der Höhe und haben fleissig Cocatee getrunken, der von allen Einheimischen als bestes Mittel gegen Höhenkrankheit gepriesen wird. Der Bus selbst, bessere Kategorie mit bequemen Liegesitzen zuckelte dann 15 Stunden über recht gut ausgebaute Strassen. Die Ausblicke zwischendurch waren spektakulär. Es ist kaum vorstellbar, dass hier seit Ewigkeiten gesiedelt wurde. Zwischendurch fahren wir direkt durch die Wolken! Angekommen in Cusco merke ich bei einer kurzen Einkaufstour durchaus die Höhe. Ich schnaufe und muss mich zwischendurch ausruhen, aber tatsächlich gewöhnt man sich recht schnell daran.Read more

  • Day41

    Cusco - Tag 1

    April 19 in Peru

    Die Flugzeit von La Paz nach Cusco: 10:29 - 10:29
    So sind wir dann in Cusco gelandet, wollten ein offizielles Taxi zur Unterkunft buchen, wurden dann aber irgendwie weiter vermittelt und nach einem Telefonat mit der Unterkunft wurden wir dann zu einem besseren Preis direkt dahin chauffiert.... - wir haben keine Ahnjng wieso, aber glücklicherweise hat alles geklappt😅
    Das Hostal liegt direkt im Historischen Zentrum und so erkunden wir unser Quartier zu Fuss.

    ☆ 1. Cuy gegessen: Meerschweinchenpizza
    ☆ Eigentlich wollten wir am Abend nur schnell raus, um ein paar Snacks zu unserer Flasche Wein einzukaufen. Wir kamen keine 2 Meter weit, schon wurden wir wegen eines Tattoos angesprochen - mal schauen... wir gehen in ein Schmuckgeschäft, gelangen dahinter zu einer Touristenagentur und steigen da die Treppe hinauf...
    kurze Zeit und zwei Tattowierungen später ;-)
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Plaza de Armas Cusco

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