If you want to get your money’s worth and enjoy Peru, this is for you

The 3 unique things before you go to Cusco.

When I went to Peru for the first time I was overwhelmed by the amount of knock-off services offered and how little actual information there was to assist me with my travels. That led me to write this blog post about how I believe Cusco is ruined. It’s also what led me to create this site. I hope this page will help you sort through the various services and false info that makes it difficult to plan your trip. Be careful when you go to Machu Picchu because many services only want your money and do not care what you get from the trip.

Aside from this site, this is what can help you learn a great deal about the Incas before you leave so you know when you’re being punked.

3 things to learn

  1. Learn the basics of the Incas and what it used to be like.
  2. Have an idea of what you’re looking at before you go: there are few plaques explaining things and you will be reliant on a tour guide. If you don’t have a tour guide, well then you have no idea what you’re looking at. This quick, easy to memorize guide will help.
  3. Learn of Ayni and Yanantin. These principles dictated almost everything that Native Andean’s did. They would be like the Golden Rule in western world, or Confucianism in the Eastern world. Would you go to Koyto Japan without learning of ancestral worship or “In and Yo” (Their version of yin yang). Don’t go to Cusco without having a basic understanding of Ayni and Yanantin.

3 things to know

  1. Memorize these basic Quechua words. Would you go to Jeruselem without knowing who Jesus was? Why would you go to Cusco, the religious center of the Inca, without knowing who Inti, Mama-Quilla, Pacha-Mama, or Viracocha were?
  2. Know these basic things about the Incas. There’s a lot of basic things to know about the Incas, but the most important in Cusco is probably this, anything out of the usual could be considered sacred and be worshiped. The Inca’s economic model would most be aligned with Marxist theory, and the Inca Empire was about 3 times the size of California and was governed without horses, writing, or the wheel.
  3. Read this about the myths: The mummies were not like Egyptian mummies. Aliens were not involved IN ANYTHING. And there is no Eldorado so don’t go looking.

3 things to do

  1. Other ruins in Cusco area
  2. Find a good tour agency
  3. Rent a motorcycle while you’re there.
    JM Lanctôt with a rented motorcycle

    There are many options in Cusco to rent motorcycles

     

    The motorcycles are only about $20/day and come with a helmet. No need to reserve before, there are lots of outfits.

    Lanctôt with Quechua kids and the motorcycle

    While riding I picked up a couple kids that needed a ride.

    With a motorcycle you can get off the beaten path and I can almost guarantee you that you will meet locals.

    Two boys with the Salinas salt mines behind us

    We followed the road down to the salt mines where they showed me around

    And the locals will show you really cool stuff.