Getting to the ancient Inca ruins of Machu Picchu, set deep in the Andes, is a journey and an experience that requires advance planning and preparation. To avoid arriving at the site without the right gear, we've compiled this list of things you should bring.
San Blas, Centro Histórico, Cusco
There are many ways to explore San Blas as part of a larger half-day, full-day, group, or private tour that incorporates Cusco’s historic center; or multi-day tours that include visits to Lake Humantay, Machu Picchu, and other key attractions of the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Tours typically include a guide and round-trip transportation too. Plus, the neighborhood’s cafés, art galleries, boutiques, and yoga studios lend themselves to independent exploration.
Things to Know Before You Go
San Blas is ideal for art and culture lovers, as well as anyone looking for a more mellow corner of Cusco.
Wear comfortable walking shoes, as the streets are uneven and, in some places, very steep.
Remember to drink water and stay hydrated—this will help you acclimate to Cusco's high altitude.
Many tours in San Blas are not accessible to wheelchair users.
How to Get There
San Blas is tucked away in the hills above Cusco’s historic center and is easily accessible on foot. From the northwestern corner of Plaza de Armas, walk up Triunfo Street until you reach the Cuesta de San Blas. Alternatively, take a taxi to the neighborhood; there are no public transportation options.
When to Get There
Visit San Blas by day to enjoy views over Cusco or stop by at night to see the narrow streets illuminated. Whenever you visit, there'll be somewhere to grab food and a drink. Cusco in general is enchanting any time of the year, but visit between June and mid-September for the best weather.
Walk Like an Inca
While there's more than one way to reach San Blas, there are few more beautiful routes than the ancient Inca road, aka the Hatunrumiyoc, which means “great stone street" in Quechua. Along the way, look out for the famous 12-angled stone set into the wall just outside the Archbishop’s Palace—it’s one of the oldest surviving walls in the city.
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