This is the main city where the majority of tourists arrive (in order to do the Macchu Picchu hike). Even though we contemplated doing the Macchu Picchu hike, considering we have a 3rd member who is not welcome (Zoe) and we have seen already a lot of ruins, we decided against it. Plus, it really wasn’t on our list, so we spend a day doing some errands in Cusco and decide to only spend one night here. We do however treat ourselves to a nice dinner at Organika.
Their specialty is vegetables they grow on their own farm in the sacred valley. We know that because you can’t drink tap water, eating a salad on the road when we are not used to the parasites in the water is asking for stomach trouble. When we hear that they have amazing salads and make foods that highlight vegetables, it is a dream. We have the starter salad with grilled papaya and rosemary (delicious) and the trout ceviche. We’ve been trying to eat less meat on the road and if anyone ever goes to Cusco, I would recommend this restaurant as a must.
Cusco is the most touristic city we’ve ever seen. We have hardly seen many Asian people since we began this trip, but here in the city square, I felt like we were in downtown Vancouver or something. It was overwhelming and alarming at the same time. At one point, I get recognized as a Korean tourist as she told me I shouldn’t buy anything from this one shop because they are overpriced. We get yelled at from vendors with a ‘Konnichiwa’ or ‘Ni Hao’ with brochures waving in your face, it’s exhausting.
But, if you want modern conveniences and nice restaurants with quick information on tours this is a good place to visit. There are endless stores to buy souvenirs and the city itself is really modern and nice – there is even a Starbucks.
Spoiler alert, we are limited for space so we haven’t been buying any souvenirs, so don’t expect anything but long hugs upon our return.
One of our last stops in Peru is in an area called Tinajani Canyon. We weren’t expecting too much, but holy moly it is a beautiful place. It is virtually untouched and the rock formations are so unique and breathtaking. We basically have the place to ourselves except for locals who live there of course. If this place was in America it would become a national park in 2 seconds flat, but in South America – It’s an area where locals farm and live.
We are quite glad to be leaving Peru as it was a hard country for us to visit. We saw so much poverty in the North and coming into the main cities, the streets are littered with rubbish and plastic waste, but as soon as you enter the touristic areas it’s cleaned up and swept under the rug. It’s all part of the experience, right?