Cusco - Day & Night Life

Wonderguide by

Vanessa Escobar

Cusco - Day & Night Life

I have lived in Cusco for almost 2 years and I see it as my second home. It is better known for Machu Picchu but there is so much to see and do that you might feel as overwhelmed as I did when I first arrived so I have created this guide to help you enjoy your time here as much as possible.

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The Must-See places

Cusco's most amazing places you cannot miss.

Image - Plaza De Armas
Plaza De Armas
Vanessa:My favorite place in Cusco. I usually come here just to relax and take the sun while enjoying the beautiful view. It will wow you every time you see it no matter how many times that is.
Image - Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain
Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain
Vanessa:Climbing this mountain is an amazing experience. It takes 2 to 3 hours to get to the top and the height makes it much harder(5000 m.a.s.l). It was one of the hardest in my life but for me it was completely worth it.
Image - Humantay Lake
Humantay Lake
Vanessa:This lake is 4200 m.a.s.l. After an approximately 1.5 hours trek, you will get wonderful views of the turquoise waters at the base of Humantay Glacier. I always thought picture weren't real until I saw it myself.
Image - Qorikancha
Vanessa:Qorikancha was an Inca religious center and it is the most splendid architectural monument in all of Cusco. Inside there are also dozens of impressive paintings. I have never seen such an incredible piece of history.
Image - Cuesta de San Blas
Cuesta de San Blas
Vanessa:The coolest and more bohemian place in Cusco. Full of bars, cafes, art galleries and crasfmen selling their creative work. I love to visit its square and view point, excellent spots for reading and recharge after a long day of walking.
Image - San Pedro Market
San Pedro Market
Vanessa:The most colorful and varied market in Cusco. Here you can find from fruit and vegetables to handcraft, and ginean pigs. I come here more than anything to get a smootie, they best in the city.
Image - Pisac
Vanessa:A very magical small town with inca ruins and one of the best open markets in Cusco. A visit guarantees a very relaxing day. I come here when I want to get away from the city.
Image - Ollantaytambo
Vanessa:A small town with one of the biggest Inca ruins in Cusco and a cute main square surrounded by craft shops, restaurants, bars and cafes. Probably my favorite Inca ruins after Machu Picchu.
Image - Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu
Vanessa:One of the 7 wonders of the world and main attraction in the city. You won't see such a majestic place as this anywhere else. I was completely speechless when I saw it from above, absolutely astonishing.
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The Most Famous Multi-Days Treks

The main reason to come to Cusco is its natural beauty and the challenges to discover them make it much more interesting. Here are a few of them.

Image - Salkantay Trek
Salkantay Trek
Vanessa:The hardest trek I have faced but also the most beautiful. The worst part was the second day which we reach more than 5000 m.a.s.l. This hike is either 4 or 5 days long and the final destination is Machu Picchu.
Image - Choquequirao Archaeological Park
Choquequirao Archaeological Park
Vanessa:This place is even bigger than Machu Picchu but also much harder to get. I almost didn't make it but I am so glad I did. You have the option to do a 5 day trek to this site or extended 3 more days and get to Machu Picchu as well.
Image - Lares Trek
Lares Trek
Vanessa:A beautiful 4 day hike that gives you the opportunity to be in contact with local people. My favorite thing was the hundreds of Alpacas and vicuñas that I saw on the way.
Image - Inca Trail Trek
Inca Trail Trek
Vanessa:The most popular of all and because of that it has to be booked in advance (you need a permit to do it and they are very limited). There exist 2 versions, long 4D/3N and short 2D/1N, both are amazing but I did the long version and if you have the time and find the permits, I recommend you to do as well.

Coffee, Tea & Pisco

On this section I describe the best places to go for a nice chat with friends while enjoying delicious and afforable brevages

Image - BarOne
Vanessa:A cozy place where you will get the best and biggest mojitos in the city, definitely my favorites. They also have "a happy hour" that lasts all day long and the rest of the drinks are very afforable. They also have breakfast all day and Coffee they grew themselves.
Image - L'atelier Café Concept
L'atelier Café Concept
Vanessa:A cute little half cafe/half clothing and jewelry store with the best tea in town. They also have very nice coffee and desserts.I usually go on sundays and spend a couple of hours enjoying the tea and the peaceful environment.
Image - Republica Del Pisco
Republica Del Pisco
Vanessa:This place have all the kinds of Pisco that exist and they make the most delicious coctels with them. I particulary enjoy the live bands they have every night. They play music of all genres.
Image - Indigo Bar Restaurant
Indigo Bar Restaurant
Vanessa:Very nice coctels with 2x1 specials and board games. I come here to have a different more chill kind of night with my friends.
Vanessa:Right at the top of San Blas, it has one of the best views of the city, with great music, excellent service and very good food. I really like to have a beer or two here while contempleting Cusco.
Vanessa:If you want to know the story behind Peru's most famous drink, this is the place for you. And also, like me, you can have amazing drinks and tapas while you do.

The Best Food in Town

Peru is well known for its delicious food and here are the best restaurants you should not miss.

Image - Morena Peruvian Kitchen
Morena Peruvian Kitchen
Vanessa:My favorite restaurant in the world. The food is mouth-watering (They have Peruvian and International food), the service is the best I have ever had and if you go for dinner, they go to your table and make their "Coctel of the night" right there in a few minutes. Veggie options also available. Price $$
Image - Ruphas Diner - Av Tullumayo
Ruphas Diner - Av Tullumayo
Vanessa:If you have already tried enough traditional food and you are craving for some junk food, this is the place for you. The best burgers can be found here and also the best Ice or hot tea, which is refillable. I am never disappointed when I go there. Price $$
Image - Chicha por Gaston Acurio
Chicha por Gaston Acurio
Vanessa:Gaston Acurio has been recognized as one of the best chefs in the world and Chicha is one of his many restaurants in Peru so saying the food is amazing would be an understatement. I tried the Lomo Saltado and even thought it is quite pricey, I will never regret it. Price $$$
Image - Eusebio & Manolo
Eusebio & Manolo
Vanessa:If you love waffles, there is no place to go that this. They have different options to make them even more yummy and coffee of all styles as well. I go there once a week to get a waffle, coffee and juice for just 10 soles. Price $
Image - Green Point Restaurants
Green Point Restaurants
Vanessa:Special for vegans with a very diverse, afforable menu and a great service. I am not a vegan but I still enjoy their food very much. Price $$

Partying & Unwinding

Night life in Cusco is as exciting as its treks and this section will give you a list of the most fun places to dance all night long.

Image - Mama Africa
Mama Africa
Vanessa:Great music, 2x1 specials and people all over the world dancing from Despacito to YMCA all night long! This is one of my starters for an awesome night out.
Image - Chango Club Cusco
Chango Club Cusco
Vanessa:No matter were you start your night, you have got to end it in here or don't go out at all. It gets really good after 1 am and you just won't get out until the sun comes out! and believe me you will leave the place tired but feeling like you had a great night.
Image - loki Cusco
loki Cusco
Vanessa:A famous hostel with a cool bar to play beerpong and pool. If you are not really into that, you can always dance and meet very interesting people from all over the world. I am still in contact with friends I met there!
Image - Wild Rover Hostel Cusco
Wild Rover Hostel Cusco
Vanessa:The bar is small but size really doesnt matter here. Music you can dance and sing along to and very friendly bartender that will offer free shots every hour are the best features of the place. I am never bored when I go.

Wonderguide map

  1. Plaza De Armas
  2. Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain
  3. Humantay Lake
  4. Qorikancha
  5. Cuesta de San Blas
  6. San Pedro Market
  7. Pisac
  8. Ollantaytambo
  9. Machu Picchu
  10. Salkantay Trek
  11. Choquequirao Archaeological Park
  12. Lares Trek
  13. Inca Trail Trek
  14. BarOne
  15. L'atelier Café Concept
  16. Republica Del Pisco
  17. Indigo Bar Restaurant
  20. Morena Peruvian Kitchen
  21. Ruphas Diner - Av Tullumayo
  22. Chicha por Gaston Acurio
  23. Eusebio & Manolo
  24. Green Point Restaurants
  25. Mama Africa
  26. Chango Club Cusco
  27. loki Cusco
  28. Wild Rover Hostel Cusco

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