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Cusco, Peru: A Photographic Journey

March 6, 2009 by  
Filed under Destinations, Features, Photography

Editor’s Note: This feature includes a combination of photos by Bella Hobbel and Gennaro Salamone.

Cusco was the historic capital of the Inca Empire. Peruvians continue to proudly point out the remaining aspects of the culture including a durable Inca stone wall. Even today, Cusco has maintained a level of grandeur. That and its close proximity to Machu Picchu make Cusco one of the most popular cities for travelers to South American continent.

Follow this photographic journey through the historical capital of the Incas:

cusco-cathedral.jpg cuzco-cathedral.jpg Cathedral of Cusco, Peru © Gennaro Salamone

The Plaza de Armas of Cusco is filled with beautiful architecture. This gathering place is the location of the city’s cathedral. As with most Peruvian cities, the influence of the Spanish Empire is visually apparent.

procession-peru.jpg procession-cusco.jpg Procession, Cusco © Bella Hobbel

Catholicism has a substantial influence on local culture. Processions to honor patron saints or Jesus Christ are regular occurrences. These processions are a great way to observe locals spending time with their families.

cusco-food-market.jpg cusco-textiles-peru.jpg Indigenous Textiles and Food Markets © Gennaro Salamone

Indigenous textile markets provide travelers with plenty of warm clothing options for the trip to Machu Picchu. Together with the textiles, Cusco has a sizable food market with fresh produce, cheeses, and meats. It’s also a fun place to observe the haggling between locals.

cusco-architecture.jpg Architecture, Cusco © Gennaro Salamone

Cusco’s architecture shows both Incan and Spanish influences. It is, perhaps, the best place in Peru to view this combination. A bonus to travelers is viewing the majestic hills around the city along with the stunning blue skies. Perfect for photographers.

mayan-kids.jpg Local Kids, Cusco © Gennaro Salamone

Cusco is filled with local kids trying to pass the day. It’s a good idea to spend time observing their joy, as you sit in the Plaza de Armas, trying to avoid overexertion and altitude sickness.

View another journey through the floating islands of Lake Titicaca photos or the Bodh Gaya, India photos chronicling the place of Buddha’s enlightenment.
gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing an article or photograph for publication.


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52 Responses to “Cusco, Peru: A Photographic Journey”
  1. Chris says:

    Really love the images. You can tell a lot about a culture or place from a bunch of photos. The processions are always a favorite in Latin America. In Italy and Spain too in the smaller towns. Something to see, for sure.

  2. Liz says:

    Beautiful shots. Peru was my favorite country to visit to date. It has so much diversity of terrain for a country that size. Mountain, jungle, desert, urban areas. All in that one country.

  3. jen laceda says:

    I’ve not been to Peru, but Cusco and Machu Picchu are definitely on top of the list. I am also dreaming to stay at Hotel Monasterio in Cusco–in one of their oxygen-enriched rooms. Sometimes, when I am sitting in my office cubicle, I feel like I need a blast of O2 to keep me alive. G, this post just gave me a blast of fresh air this moring! Thanks!

  4. Gennaro says:


    Thanks. That’s true of photography.


    It does have it all. Throw in culture and history too.

    @jen laceda

    Thanks. It’s a great place to visit along with Machu Picchu which lives up to it’s reputation. And the oxygen is needed there as the Cusco is at almost 11,00 feet (3,300m).

  5. Seth says:

    Excellent photos. Looks like an amazing city. Another one to add to the list of must sees. And being so close to Machu Picchu makes it even more desirable. Agree with Chris. Love the processions.

  6. Gennaro says:


    It truly is and you’re right about the added benefit of Machu Picchu.

  7. Lisis says:

    Hi, Gennaro! I love this post, the pictures, your blog… the whole thing. It is so aptly named because, whenever I feel myself wishing I could go out and travel to some fantastic location, I just come to your site and feel the closest thing to it. Today I’ve already been to South America, thanks to you!

    Keep it up… some of us are depending on it.

  8. Jay says:

    Breathtaking!! I never knew Peru was so beautiful. Thanks Gennaro for sharing this today!

  9. Gennaro says:


    Thanks for the kind words. It’s great to have you as part of our community.


    No problem. It really is that beautiful.

  10. I love these images and descriptions! I worked on a sheep farm here in the USofA with several men from this area. It’s so cool to see pictures of their homeland. The textiles are SO vivid and colorful!

  11. Gennaro says:


    Thank you. They really do create amazing textiles there.

  12. Liara Covert says:

    Peru is certainly known as a spiritual place. You remind readers that th depth and history are timeless and worth exploration. The photos offer a glimpse of a world that is enshrouded in mystery.

  13. Gennaro says:

    @Liara Covert

    Thanks and well said.

  14. TStone says:

    Wow, great photos.
    Peruvian textiles are pretty spectacular. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Gennaro says:


    Thanks for the kind words. They produce excellent textiles there, for sure.

  16. WildJunket says:

    Great stuff! Colorful stunning pictures. I have a trip to Peru planned for this summer, definitely gonna be at Cusco. Gennaro great site here, professional and informative, love it!

  17. J.D. Meier says:

    It looks larger than life and I like the reflection on architecture.

    Although I haven’t hunted for my favorite architecture yet, I do like some of the sites I’ve see in Arizona, Key West and Louisiana.

  18. Gennaro says:


    Thanks for the kind words. Peru is a great country to visit, enjoy.

    @J.D. Meier

    It feels larger than life there at times. Arizona has a unique blend of Western and Native architecture going too.

  19. Michael says:

    Until I can afford the time and money to travel to these beautiful places, I’ll be visiting your site. Thanks for sharing!

  20. Gennaro says:


    Welcome aboard, Michael. Good to have you here.

  21. I would love to go to Peru – when I was a kid my grandfather asked me to pick a country in South America that I would like to visit and I answered Peru – I’m not sure why I did at the time. Now it’s because I studied the Incan culture in college.

  22. Gennaro says:

    @Kim Woodbridge

    The Incas were part of the draw for me. And there was a lot more there than expected for a relatively small country.

  23. Gemma says:

    Ah Peru! My fascinating somewhere that i like to dream about! The colours and textures in your photos are simply awesome. I must admit, the cathedral wall in the first photo fascinates me with all its intricate detail!

  24. Gennaro says:


    Welcome aboard and thanks for the kind words.

  25. Lily says:

    what a lovely place, thanks for sharing.

  26. PJ says:

    This is a great overview, everything is so colorful and exotic looking.

  27. Gennaro says:


    Thanks. It is a beautiful city.


    Thanks. Very vivid colors throughout the country.

  28. maiylah says:

    lovely shots! one of my dream destinations … 🙂

  29. Gennaro says:


    Thanks. It’s worth a visit, for sure.

  30. Hi Gennaro

    This is a beautiful post, I love the photo. A few of my friends had always told me how amazing Peru is. Now that I see the photos, I can only imagine how great it would be in person.
    Thank you,
    Giovanna Garcia
    Imperfect Action is better than No Action

  31. Gennaro says:

    @Giovanna Garcia

    No problem. It is a beautiful place to visit.

  32. catherine Bardrick says:

    An interesting and effective selection of shots here…

  33. Gennaro says:

    @Catherine Bardrick


  34. Ashley says:

    Beautiful photos. Love the architecture of the city.

  35. Tika says:

    Those cathedrals are gorgeous. I would love to venture to Cusco. Love the procession to. Must have been a great experience.

  36. Gennaro says:


    Thanks. It does have great architecture.


    It’s a wrothwhile spot to visit. Lots of beautiful places to see.

  37. Ms.Tee says:

    Such lovely photos – my husband has been to Peru and loved it. THank you for sharing them with us.

  38. Gennaro says:

    @Ms. Tee

    Thanks. Glad you loved Peru. Me too.

  39. Stunning photography! Thank you for sharing. ~Arleen

  40. hkki says:

    Thanks. Beautiful photos.

  41. Gennaro says:


    Thanks. It’s a great city.



  42. Perfect images for the season!

  43. Gennaro says:

    @Laura Ingalis Gunn

    Thanks. It was a gorgeous day when the images were taken.

  44. Andy M says:

    Beautiful photos that bring back many great memories. I was living in Cusco for 6 months until last October. I’m hoping to go back again later this summer.

  45. Gennaro says:

    @Andy M – Agreed. Great city. Hope you get back there soon.

  46. Very nice pics! Cusco is lovely!


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