Travel Planning
Travel Planning

Cusco at a Glance

High-altitude Cusco serves as a launch-pad to Machu Pichu and other Incan and pre-Incan sites. 

Cusco's colonial portion was built on the conquered ruins of Incan civilization. The Spanish literally took apart Incan structures and used the stones to create their own impressive collection of religious and administrative buildings. Wander Cusco's cobbled streets while you adjust to the sky-high altitudes. Splendid churches and monasteries mix with the much older ruins of Incan civilization and all around you, green mountains rise up jaggedly towards the clouds. 

In the area around Cusco you can hike, trek, mountain bike or just take a bus. As the altitude drops you travel from the Andes to a lush cloud forest all the way down to the Amazon jungle. 

What to Expect
High Season
June - August
Low Season
September - May
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Language: Spanish
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      Getting There
      Major Airports
      • Major Airport Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport

      Passport / Visa Requirements

      Travelers from the United States, Canada and the EU need a valid passport to enter the country on trips of less than 90 days. Upon arrival, you'll be stamped and given an immigration card. Travelers must keep their passports and the card them at all times, especially in rural areas and on the Inca Trail where it is required by law. For security reasons, make a photocopy of your documents and store it in a different place than the originals. When you leave the country, you return the immigration card so it is important not to lose it. Travelers seeking more information can contact the Peruvian Embassy in their country. American citizens can also use the U.S State Department website as a resource. 

      Need to Know

      Severe Weather and Seismic Activity Peru has earthquakes. Peru has dry highlands, the cold, high Andes and a coastal tropical region. In all areas, rain can cause flooding during the wet season or during an El Nino year. Nights are frequently much colder than the day in places with higher elevation. 

      Safety Concerns Pickpockets and bag slashers are common in Peru so take the precaution of holding your backs tightly in public. Leave your bag between your feet when on buses and be wary of carrying a backpack or anything you can't see. 

      Health Concerns Speak with your health care provider about vaccinations and health preparations at least two months before your trip. Visitors should come prepared to purify their water either by boiling it vigorously for 1-3 minutes or by sending it through a filter.