We wake up this morning in our luxurious Cusco hotel, the Palacio del Inka. We are located just across the road from the impressive Koricancha (the Temple of the Sun), and surrounded by magnificent Inca and colonial buildings. Also, we are just minutes away from the city’s major attractions: the main plaza, the Cathedral, and the artisans’ neighbourhood known as San Blas.
Breakfast is served in a beautiful courtyard restaurant and afterwards we meet our local guides, Marisol and Hanni. The best way to explore Cusco city centre is on foot and that’s exactly what we are doing this morning. First stop is The Temple of the Sun, Koricancha. One of the most important temples of the Inca Empire, Koricancha was dedicated to the Sun God, Inti. The Spanish later incorporated the Inca stonework into the structure of the Santo Domingo Church which was built on the site. Major earthquakes since have severely damaged the church but the original Inca stone walls have remained intact due to their sophisticated stone masonry.
From Koricancha we continue our walk through original Inca roads and alleyways to reach Cusco’s main square. The architecture is colonial. There is a big park in the middle and wonderful views in all directions. Included is a visit to the Cathedral before free time to lunch, shop and explore!
This evening we dine at Restaurant Inkazuela which is situated in Plaza de la Nazarenas. Richard discovered this restaurant during his recce last year. Family owned and run by Tom and Adela, we receive a warm welcome and enjoy a typical local menu including Andean stew and plenty of wine!