Cusco in Peru is the stunning gateway to the Inca Trail, one of the world’s most notable hikes. If you’ve got 72 hours to spare in the city, check out our suggestions on what to do.
We’ve asked our expert travelers at Feel Good Travel for their recommendations and have shared the best in this blog. We created the Facebook group to inspire those with wanderlust to talk all things vacation. Join the discussion.
The vivid natural coloring of Rainbow Mountain has made it a wildly popular attraction in recent years. For a long time, the mountains were hidden under snow and ice. When it melted away completely in 2015, visitors began to flock to Ausangate Mountain and it quickly became known as the Rainbow Mountain.
This spectacular natural site was recommended by Judith, who loved her trip to Cusco:
“It’s not to be missed, just make sure you are acclimatized to the altitude first, it’s a hard-enough hike as it is. The trip takes up the whole day, you will be picked up around 4am, taken for a small breakfast and then after the hike you get a huge lunch. It was a difficult hike but so rewarding to get to the top.”
Skylodge Adventure Suites
Image Credit: CNN
This suggestion is definitely a cliff-hanger.
Fancy spending the night in a glass cabin suspended 400m from the ground on the side of a cliff? It’s entirely possible thanks to the Skylodge Adventure Suites. Located in the Sacred Valley, around an hour and a half from Cusco, there’s a catch. You must climb 400m of Via Ferrata (protected climbing route) or hike a trail through ziplines. Once there, though, you get to enjoy undisturbed spectacular views.
The Planetarium was another of Judith's recommendations:
“One of my favourite evenings was spent at the planetarium. They have telescopes set up to look at specific planets/stars and they give a presentation on astrology and its influence on the Inca culture. They even provided blankets for the chilly evening!”
Los Toldos Chicken
Jane loved the “good value and tasty” food on offer at this popular restaurant in the centre of Cusco. Specializing in, unsurprisingly, chicken and grilled meats, it’s a simple yet delicious concept. Jane also recommended trying the Peruvian soft drink, Inca Cola. Peru is one of the few countries in the world where the most popular soft drink isn’t coca cola, it’s their own drink Inca Cola. Its prime ingredient is lemon verbena, and it has a yellow tint to it – so don’t expect it to taste of the traditional cola that’s famous all over the world!
Jane said, “The Inca Cola is indescribable – it’s not like cola or lemonade drinks, it has its own taste. It’s not unpleasant but took a bit of getting used to! Rumour has it that it helps with altitude sickness, and I do feel that it did – although not sure that it was just the placebo effect.”
Experience life before the Inca Empire
As your 72 hours in Peru draws to a close, we recommend you visit one of the small Quechan villages in Cusco. Quechuan people were indigenous in Peru, speak the language of Quecha and continue to practice traditions of their culture, including weaving and dyeing yarns. You can witness this in person, as well as their traditional dress. Then take a browse around many of the craft shops that are peppered through the villages that sell the wares of the many women who continue to weave daily.