We’ll take a tour of the city of Cusco and hit the main attractions left behind by the Inca civilization like Sacsayhuaman and Koricancha among others. We’ll then hike the famous Classic Inca Trail, seeing more ruins along the way, before ending up in the magical destination of Machu Picchu!
To get a better idea of the history of Cusco, today we’ll go on a City Tour of Cusco which will last about 5 hours. We’ll start with Koricancha/Santo Domingo Monastery. Koricancha was originally one of the main Inca temples to worship the Sun God. It was said to be covered in gold and was filled with golden statues. Unfortunately the Spanish conquistadors removed everything made of gold and destroyed the great part of the temple. They then constructed the Santo Domingo Monastery on top of the ruins, although you can still see remnants from original temple.
We will also visit the remnants of the Sacsayhuaman site left behind by the Incas. Sacsayhuaman is located above the city of Cusco and is also called ‘Head of the Puma’ since Cusco was built in the form of the Puma when the Incas inhabited it and Sacsayhuaman was located where the head would be. Although it was damaged by the Spanish after Inca rebellions, the ruins are still very impressive with blocks of stone, many of which weigh over 100 tons!. Close by Sacsayhuaman you’ll be able to visit the Inca site of Quenqo meaning ‘labyrinth.’ Experts believe this site was used for ceremonial purposes. This is also the beginning of the famous Inti Raymi festival.
PucaPucara is considered to be a ‘tambo’ which were control points made throughout the Inca Empire. Pucapucara is believed to be a controlled entry point for those wanting to enter the city of Cusco. Tambomachay is located outside of the city of Cusco and is believed to be a temple dedicated to the worship of water. Experts think it was an import ceremonial place of worship because of the detail of the stonework. Overnight in hotel.