Visiting Cusco &

Getting Around

Cusco is located in the southern central area of Peru. Due to its strategic location, Cusco was an important administrative center for the Wari civilization, and later on it was the capital of the Inca Empire. Nowadays, Cusco is the most visited city in Peru by foreign travelers, after Lima, and it is an important source of income for the country due to the tourism industry. The City of Cusco can be accessed from other main cities such as Puno, Juliaca, Arequipa, Nasca, Lima, or Puerto Maldonado.

The City of Cusco can be visited by air and land. The international airport Alejandro Velasco Astete of Cusco receives direct flights from Arequipa, Lima, Juliaca, Puerto Maldonado, and La Paz (Bolivia). Cusco City and most of the main cities and tourist areas can be accessed by road, but not all roads are in good condition.The roads from Arequipa, Juliaca, Puno, Puerto Maldonado, Nasca, and Lima to Cusco are in good condition (asphalted), but many roads to access small towns around Cusco are in poor condition and shouldn't be traveled on your own. (Ask for advice before planning a road trip to these areas of Cusco.)

It is important to know that moving around the City of Cusco or traveling by road from or to other cities in Peru is a challenge if you don't speak Spanish and/or if you aren't a very cautious, defensive driver. The City of Cusco and surrounding districts have an over population of vehicles and the public transportation system is chaotic. Once in the city, it is better to hire a driver to take you places or walk when possible. (A walk around the City of Cusco will blow your mind.) Walking around downtown Cusco during the day is fairly safe. (Travelers still need to be cautios as in any major city around the world.) At night, it is better to hire the services of a trustworthy company to take you around.

Visiting Cusco by Plane


Alejandro Velasco Astete lnternational Airport - Cusco:

  • Location: Av. Velasco Astete s/n, District of Wanchaq, Province and Region of Cusco.
  • Phone: +51 84 22-260 l.
  • Arrivals and Departures: This airport receives direct flights from Arequipa, Juliaca, Lima, Puerto Maldonado, and one international light from La Paz every day. All international and domestic departures and arrivals can be checked at the Aeropuertos Andinos del Peru site.
  • Highlights: There is a bookstore, a few handcraft stores, a drug store, sorne coffee shops.
  • Transportation From and To: If transportation hasn't been arranged to take the traveler to his/her accommodations, an unauthorized taxi shouldn't be hired. (The rate of travelers robbed is high.) Ask for an authorized taxi driver. If pick up is arranged through a tour company, the reliability of the provider should be triple-checked to avoid disappointments. A private ride from the airport to downtown Cusco costs $5.00 - $10.00 (depending on providers and service needed) .
  • Airlines: LanPeru (Av. El Sol 627-B, Cercado District), PeruvianAirlines  (Av. El Sol 627-A, Cercado District), Avianca (Av. ElSol 602-B, Cercado District), Star Peru (Av. El Sol 627, Suite 101, Cercado District), LC Peru (Av. El Sol 520, Cercado District),  Amaszonas (Av. El Sol 574, Cercado District) .

Average Flight Duration


1 hour and 5minutes

Juliaca o Puerto Maldonado

55 minutes


1 hour and 20 minutes

La Paz, Bolivia

1 hour

Visiting Cusco by Road & Getting Around


Cusco is the most important tourist destination in Peru. The majority of travelers visiting Peru include the Region of Cusco in their itineraries. The City of Cusco can be accessed from Lima via Nasca and then Apurimac or via Arequipa and then Juliaca. Both roads have one lane per side for the majority of the route, and many areas are curvy with deep cliffs. Drivers need to be very cautious when traveling by road.Traveling at night is not recommended.

There are hundreds of bus companies but not all of them have been authorized to operate and, most importantly, aren't safe for traveling. Below is a list of bus companies which are known to offer a good service:

  • Expreso Cruz del Sur: It provides different quality services, the most comfortable being the Cruzero service (bed-style seats) . A cheaper option is the Imperial service, which is next in quality and comfort. Cruz del Sur is located in Av. Industrial 121, Urb. Bancopata, Santiago District, Cusco.
  • Expreso Internacional Ormeño: lt provides a bed-style seat service. Ormeño has its main office in Terminal Terrestre Cusco, Stand 41, Santiago District.
  • Oltursa: It provides a bed-style seat service at a good price. Oltursa has a main office at the Terminal Terrestre Cusco, Santiago District.
  • Peru Tour Bus: It offers direct rides from Cusco to Puno and vice versa as well as Puno to Copacabana in Bolivia and vice versa. The buses are comfortable with reclining seats at a good price. lts main office in Cusco is located in the Terminal Terrestre Cusco, Santiago District.
  • Inka Express: It provides a tourist service with stops in sorne places of interest. It covers the route from Cusco to Puno. It has an office in Av. 28 de Julio 21 1, 5th stop of the Urb. Tito, Wanchaq District.

Distances & Average Driving Time driving from and to Lima


597 kilometers - 10 hours by road

Chivay (Colca Canyon)

565 kilometers - 10 hours by road

Ica (Via Avancay)

828 kilometers - 16 hours by road


333 kilometers - 5 hours and 15 min

La Paz, Bolivia

640 km - 12 hours


148 km - 3 hours and 30 minutes

Lima (Via Avancay / Nasca)

1119 kilometers - 20 hours and 30 minutes


106 kilometers - 2 hours by road

Nasca (Via Avancay)

567 kilometers - 13 hours and 30 minutes

Ollantaytambo (Via Chinchero)

72 kilometers - 1 hours and 45 minutes

Paracas (Via Avancay / Nasca)

882 kilometers - 17 hours and 15 minutes


24 kilometers - 45 minutes by road

Puerto Maldonado

453 kilometers - 10 hours by road


376 kilometers - 6 hours

Santa Teresa

205 kilometers - 4 hours and 30 minutes


60 kilometers - 1 hour and 20 minutes

Loremp Impsiom

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