The “traveling” part of travel is often pretty dull, but in Peru it’s easy to get tour buses that make a stop every couple of hours to stretch your legs, grab a meal and see a few sights. And you can watch the scenery go by.
Here are a few photos from my bus ride through the district of Cusco, on the way to the city of Cusco. It was dark by the time we arrived to the city, so no photos. From the heights of Puno, we descend a bit into Cusco and it gets greener and warmer as the hours roll on.
Our first stop was just outside of Cusco to see a lovely church. I wasn’t allowed to take photos inside, but was given a CD. I’ve not looked at the CD yet since I don’t own a device that plays them at this time.
According to Wikipedia: “The Church of the Society of Jesus is a historic Jesuit church in Cusco, the ancient capital of the Inca Empire, in Peru. It is situated in the Plaza de Armas, the city center. It is built on the site of an Inca palace. It is an example of Andean Baroque architecture. Its construction began in 1576, but it was badly damaged in an earthquake in 1650. The rebuilt church was completed nearly two decades later. The Jesuit college in Cusco was dedicated the Transfiguration of Christ, and the high altar features a painting of the Transfiguration attributed to the Jesuit Diego de la Puente. The most notable piece of art in the church is a painting depicting the marriage of Martín García de Loyola, the nephew of Ignatius Loyola to Beatriz, the great-niece of the Inca ruler Tupac Amaru.”
The small towns we drove through seemed to specialize. The one above made a type of local bread. Another had cheese. But they were mostly just wide spots in the road and getting a decent photo was tough. Saylla appeared to be the pork skin capital of the world. All the restaurants seem to feature chicharron.
I was sorry we didn’t make a stop here to try some, but it’s an easy dish to find at Peruvian restaurants.
Finally, we got to Cusco.
According to Wikipedia: “Cusco (Spanish: Cuzco, [ˈkusko]; Quechua: Qusqu or Qosqo, IPA: [ˈqɔsqɔ]), often spelled Cuzco (/ˈkuːskoʊ/), is a city in southeastern Peru, near the Urubamba Valley of the Andes mountain range. It is the capital of the Cusco Region as well as the Cusco Province. In 2013, the city had a population of 435,114. Located on the eastern end of the Knot of Cuzco, its elevation is around 3,400 m (11,200 ft).
Most of my trip between cities was by bus. I can particularly recommend the bus line Cruz del Sur (Cruise of the South) as a good way to get from one place to the next, especially overnight. This company has service between many major cities in Peru and even a few outside the country. They don’t make stops between cities, but there are other advantages. The buses have a bathroom, serve a light meal and the seats recline so you can actually sleep. At night they provide blankets and pillows. If your Spanish is good, they also have movies and books on screen and some buses also allow you to charge your electronics and have wifi onboard. One advantage of taking an overnight bus is that you don’t have to pay for a hotel room for one night. I used this service three times, and used other companies for the rest of the travel. I only took one flight during my 15 day, Grand Tour, to Lima. Buses are probably only a good idea, however, if you can speak at least functional Spanish, as these places won’t have English speakers.
I'm a professional vagabond. I quit my cubical job in January 2014. Since then, I've hiked the Appalachian Trail, The Camino, and taught English in Vietnam, Turkey, Russia, Spain, Mexico and Peru. I'm exploring the world and you can come too!
View all posts by Beth