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Notice: New train departures from San Pedro and Poroy stations

How to get to Cusco

Did you decide to travel to Cusco and don’t know what’s the best route that suits what you’re looking for? Don’t worry! Here you’ll find the best routes by bus, plane, train and what you can see along the way. We’ll tell you everything you need to know to travel without problems to the Imperial City of Cusco. Let’s go!

How to get to Cusco from abroad?

At present,  Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport in Cusco operates international flights to La Paz and Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia; Santiago, Chile; Bogotá, Colombia. 

On the other hand, Jorge Chávez International Airport in Lima receives direct flights from all countries of South America, Madrid, Barcelona, Mexico City, United States, Punta Cana, Paris, San José, Havana, Amsterdam, London and many others. Remember that it will be necessary to stop over if there are no direct flights to Cusco from our country.

In the case of the United States, it is easy to travel from LOS ANGELES, MIAMI, ORLANDO, NEW YORK, HOUSTON AND ATLANTA. The cheapest round-trip prices range from $600 to $750 at this time of year (July). 

How to get from Lima to Cusco?

The time has come to decide between what suits you and what you want to enjoy. For example, the cheapest way to travel from Lima to Cusco is by bus, while the slightly more expensive option would be to travel directly by plane. 

Lima to Cusco by bus
If time is not a problem, and you are looking for the cheapest way to get to Cusco, then bus routes are the most attractive options for you. In addition, you can dazzle yourself with all the landscapes you will find on the different routes.

Bus companies offer two types of routes: the fastest and the longest. 

  • The fastest route consists of taking passengers from Lima through Nazca and Abancay, with a travel time of 18 – 21 hours. 
  • The longest route is from Lima to Nazca, but with the difference that it passes through Arequipa. Although the total travel time is between 24 – 27 hours, there are many tourists who prefer it for the options to tour these cities, since it can be done in stages.

Some people choose the longest route to stay in Arequipa and tour the White City as much as possible in a couple of days. Their destination is still Cusco, but it never hurts to take advantage of the tour offered by the route to the south.

To take any of these buses you must approach the land terminals that are located in Lima. The main ones are located at Av. 28 de Julio (La Victoria), Plaza Norte and San Juan de Miraflores (kilometer 12 of the Panamericana Sur highway). Prices range from US$17 to US$27.

It is highly likely that passengers will present altitude sickness once the ascent through the Andes begins, so it does not hurt to take precautions.

Getting to Cusco by train

Unfortunately, there is no direct train from Lima to Cusco, but, if you chose the southern route by bus, and if you can afford it, you could get off at Arequipa or Puno to board a luxury train. 

  • From Arequipa we have the ‘Belmond Andean Explorer‘, one of the most luxurious trains in the world, which runs from Puno to Cusco. The journey on this train is 2 days and 2 nights.
  • From the city of Puno, we have the PeruRail Titicaca train, which departs from the shores of Lake Titicaca to the Imperial City and where you will always enjoy the company of live music and typical dances of the Mountains and the Peruvian highlands. In addition, you will have the opportunity to travel a route that is considered one of the most beautiful in the world

PeruRail Titicaca Train

Keep in mind that these are luxury services, but the experience is unique. You will travel through mountains and clouds, highlands and snow, plains and mountains. In addition, remember that the trip can also be made from Cusco to Puno or Arequipa. 

However, these two services will not be operating in 2021. We will advise you as soon as possible when they will be resumed. 

Plane from Lima to Cusco

If you do not have a lot of time and want a safer way to travel, then flying from Lima to Cusco is what you are aiming for. There are daily flights and most are before 12 a.m. so that tourists can do all they have planned in the city during the day.

There is only one airport in Cusco, the Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport. Flight times from Lima to Cusco last just over one hour and cost $65 – $95 depending on the services provided by the different companies. The airlines landing in Cusco are Viva Air, Sky Airline, LATAM, Star Peru or Peruvian Airlines. 

Peruvian airlines baggage policy from Lima to Cusco is very generous. Each company has different restrictions for both carry-on and checked baggage. Carry-on luggage ranges from 4 kg to 16 kg on premium flights. For checked baggage, the Peruvian standard is usually 23 kg for economy and up to 32 kg for business class. 

Keep in mind that from this December 10, 2021, those over 45 years of age must show a vaccination card to be able to board domestic flights.

Whatever type of trip you choose to Cusco from Lima – Peru, it will be an unparalleled experience. Did the idea of traveling by train interest you? Get your train tickets here!

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