Cusco: Activities during the rainy season

Cusco is a favorite destination to learn more about the history and some of the customs of the past. Cusco could have been considered the capital of much of South America. Today it is the cradle of this tradition and in this place, it is possible to find them in different activities. All this cultural legacy is expressed in the very composition of the city and in the attractions it has. To know or enjoy these attractions is possible during the rainy season and much better in the dry season. In either case, they are usually an excellent option before or after the tour of Machu Picchu. Next, let’s learn more about Cusco’s past and possible activities during the rainy season in Cusco.

Cusco Main Square

Cusco during the rainy season

Full view of the Cathedral of Cusco

Cusco is one of the most visited regions of Peru. This is because it houses within its territory the enigmatic Machu Picchu, a citadel that managed to remain standing for more than 500 years. In addition, in Cusco, you can find several traces of one of the cultures with the greatest territorial expansion in the world. For this reason, Cusco is one of the references of Universal History and Mexico for the so-called meeting of the two worlds. An important milestone for humanity since, from that moment, the world would begin new connections, conflicts, and battles that delimited the reality that we perceive today.

For all these reasons Cusco is one of the best destinations in the world. Visits to this place usually take place throughout the year. However, sometimes the number of visitors drops, precisely during the rainy season. This is often due to the complexity that can become the tour of Cusco during the rainy season. Also, it is that most foreign visitors prefer to make the trips in June and July because they correspond to their vacation dates.

However, in Cusco, during the rainy season, you can do several activities. Of course, it will be necessary to take some precautions and ideal clothing to avoid the rains from soaking us during the tour. Normally the rainy season starts at the end of November, extending until the last days of March.

The rest of the months are the dry season. During the rainy season that begins at the end of November until the end of March, the rains begin to intensify during February with a greater presence from the second week of February, and then decrease and culminate with less rain in the last days of March.

Best time to travel?
The best season to travel to Cusco and continue with the trip to Machu Picchu is during the dry season. This is because it allows you to make a trip and tour in optimal conditions. On the other hand, in the rainy season, it is possible to find certain dangers in the trip and the tour. However, the tour of Machu Picchu will be much more mystical and with much fewer tourists. The other attractions in Cusco and the Sacred Valley would be the beautiful green landscapes that are formed by the rains along with the rainbows.

Rainy season in Cusco Is it difficult to get to Machu Picchu?

Visiting Machu Picchu in the rainy season

During the rainy season, many people care more about the conditions to get to Machu Picchu than to Cusco itself. It is for this reason that we cannot stop talking about what it is like to get to Machu Picchu during the rainy season. Some people think that this is one of the greatest difficulties you can encounter in your life. Especially because few know that the distance between Cusco and Machu Picchu is approximately 100 kilometers.

However, this is not the case, and the trip in a normal season is easy to make. The main difficulty during the rainy season is that the hiking trails are damaged. If you are not planning to do the hiking trails, it is important to check the status of the route and verify the intensity of the rain. The hiking trails are the ones that usually suffer some damage due to the intensification of the rains. In the case of train travel, if you see that it is raining heavily, check whether or not trains are operating on the route.

Remember that getting to Machu Picchu will only be a complicated or difficult trip, as long as the rains are heavy and damage the train lines. Sometimes overflows can also occur, which can be avoided, but the authorities do nothing about it. On the other hand, the tour of Machu Picchu including the bus ride to the citadel is completely safe.

In addition, for various reasons, visitors to Machu Picchu are few. The seasonal fog allows a mystical tour through all the streets composed of stone walls. The tour of the Inca citadel is completely safe and you will only need a waterproof poncho and waterproof hiking shoes if possible. Finally, an interesting fact is that the Incas positioned the main constructions in high areas to avoid floods and other problems or natural disasters.

Activities in Cusco during the rainy season

Ceramics that can be seen at the Inka Museum of Cusco

Before making the trip to Machu Picchu and during the rainy season you can do different activities in Cusco. Although the rains are heavy in Cusco, it is not a reason to lock yourself in your hotel room waiting for the rain to stop. During the rain itself, it is possible to do some tours of the city with the help of a cab, an umbrella and walking the streets with some waterproof clothing. Many times it will be best to have a pair of waterproof pants and shoes. Both items will allow you to walk safely and confidently. Here are some activities that we recommend. Most of these do not require contacting a travel agency. So, feel free to visit them on your own and at your own pace and time in each location, as you wish.

  • Museums in Cusco

    In Cusco, thanks to the tradition inherited by all the historical events that happened, you can find a great variety of historical and artistic museums. One of the most representative is the Inka Museum of Cusco that belongs to the National University San Antonio Abad del Cusco. Among its facilities, you can find a large amount of pottery and Inca textiles. It is also possible to find remains of the same characteristics, but belonging to pre-Inca cultures. However what will arouse more attention is the detailed history of the whole Inca culture and the techniques and traditions that they carried out for agriculture, gastronomy, and more.

    Getting to this museum is quite easy. This important precinct is located just a few meters from the Plaza de Armas. The Inka Museum is located between Ataúd and Córdoba de Tucumán streets. Nearby, you can continue walking along C. Tucumán Street until you reach the Plazoleta de las Nazarenas. There, a new destination will be the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art. There you can find beautiful pieces of pottery and gold and silver work in general from different Andean cultures of ancient Peru.

    You can continue walking down one block from the small square along C. Palacio Street, to reach Hatunrumiyoc Street. There you will find two really interesting attractions. One of them is the Museum of Religious Art, right in the Archbishop’s Palace which was built over the temple dedicated to the ancient ruler Inca Roca. Precisely, in this construction, it will be possible to see the Stone of the 12 angles along with other figures that are formed by the presence of the carved stones.

    Further down towards Ruinas Street, you can find another good and interesting museum. We refer to the Museum of Natural History or Casa Cocha, which has several ceramic pieces and textiles that were found in Machu Picchu. All of them were found and registered during its first excavations, that is to say in 1911. These pieces were returned to Peru and today you can visit them and learn more about Machu Picchu. These are just some of the museums that can be visited near the Plaza de Armas and you can also do it walking.

  • Tours of the churches

    In the case of the tours of the churches, it is a little more complicated. These are located at considerable distances. Of course, you can also do the tours on foot, but the most prudent thing to do would be to have a private vehicle or do it in cabs. This is only if the rains are very heavy. In case the rains have decreased their intensity, you will be able to make the tour walking without problems.

    One of the destinations not to be missed is a visit to the Cathedral of Cusco. This building is one of the largest in Peru and also has a lot of history. Being one of the most important religious impositions during the extirpation of idolatries. The Cathedral of Cusco is located in the Plaza de Armas of Cusco, there you can also find the church of the Society of Jesus. Both buildings have decorations typical of the Cusco School or Andean Baroque art. In case you are interested in this artistic expression and movement, you have to make a mandatory tour of all the churches and religious buildings of Cusco.

    After visiting the Church of the Society of Jesus, we recommend a descent down Loreto Street towards the Qoricancha or the church of Santo Domingo de Cusco. This church was built over one of the most important Inca temples. The Qoricancha or Inticancha, was the temple dedicated to the main deity of the Incas, the Sun. The Sun was considered the giver of life. For this reason, a masterful harmony can be found in the stone carving of the walls that compose it.

    In addition, it is possible to find part of the Andean and Christian syncretism in some of the decorations that can be seen throughout the facilities of the monastery and the church itself. Further down, near the esplanade of the Qoricancha, it is also possible to visit the site museum of the place. This small museum exhibits some pieces found in the Inca enclosure. In case you want to do activities that involve a trip, here are some recommendations.

  • Destinations near Cusco

    If weather conditions permit you can make some trips to other destinations, not so far away from Cusco. But before you have a bad experience be sure to check with a reliable weather forecast. From Cusco, you can do different activities before and after visiting or making the trip to Machu Picchu. The main destinations are in the Sacred Valley, but you can also do tours in the South Valley to see some Inca constructions.

    Similarly, you can make trips to natural destinations such as the case of the Humantay Lagoon and the Montaña de Colores (Colored Mountain) further south of Cusco. In both cases, trekking is required, which can be a problem if you are caught unawares. Finally, it is also possible to make the trip to Machu Picchu, as mentioned above, it will be important that the road conditions are optimal. What you must have in your backpack and at the time of dressing is:

    • Waterproof footwear.
    • Waterproof clothing, including pants, a jacket, and if possible a poncho.
    • You can use an umbrella for short trips.
    • Always check the weather conditions of the destination you want to visit.
    • Remember that the rainy season starts at the end of November and lasts until the end of March.
    • Rainfall is more frequent during January and February.
    • In case you make a route that includes hiking, check if the conditions of the route are safe or suffered any damage.


By Imachupicchu – Last updated, April 26, 2024

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