Cusco Excursion: Archaeological ruins off the beaten path

Tour/Activity in Cusco, Peru

About this activity

A travel in time from Pre-Inca and Inca lost cities until colonial times

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Tipon Agricultural complex

This tour will allow you to discover important archaeological ruins far from the mainstream tourist paths. Equally impressive but less known by the crowds are these three urban emplacements that include the chapel of Andahuaylillas (known as the “Sistine Chapel of Cusco”), the Pre-Incan archaeological site of Pikillaqta, and the impressive Incan archaeological site of Tipon.

Your guide will pick you up in the morning at your hotel and drive you to Tipón. This impressive agricultural complex is located at the base of the Pachatusan Mountain, which is an important protective Apu (mountain spirit of the Andean cosmovision). It contains terraces that are still preserved, as well as walls of finely carved stones. The most incredible feature of this site is its irrigation system.

Pikillaqta city

The next stop will be in Pikillaqta. The Wari Empire occupied this territory before the Incas conquered them. During the Arawi period, this was an important urban center. This impressive archaeological site contains thousands of constructions, including plazas, colcas (silos used to store food), yards, homes, temples, and long, wides streets. Some buildings were even four floors high!

Andahuaylillas chapel

The last stop will be in Andahuaylillas, a typical Andean village that dates from colonial times. It is remarkable for the strong presence of colonial architecture. The most notable is its colonial Catholic chapel which is a true architectural jewel. The Chapel, known as the Sistine Chapel of Cusco, contains breathtaking decoration and murals from the 17th and 18th centuries.

Return to your hotel

Your guide will then drive you back to your hotel in Cusco.

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