A city as historic as Cusco that stands out not only for its valuable archaeological remains of the pre-Inca and Inca cultures, but we can also find constructions of the colonial and republican era, among them are the historical, archaeological and religious museums.
Undoubtedly, to know each of these sites we must explore the navel of the world-and have a deeper vision of what was and what is; one of the best ways to know the history is touring each of the museums that Cusco has, here is a brief overview of each of them.
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Plan your schedule to visit the following museums that have a lot to teach us:
We begin our adventure visiting the Inka Museum, located at 154 Ataúd Street near the Plaza de Armas Cusco. In this museum we can see everything about the Inca culture and its legacy, in the place you will find collections of archaeological pieces from jewelry, gold and metal objects, textiles, keros and cranial trepanations, among other remains.
Also, this colonial mansion was built in the early seventeenth century, in the place you will not only find Inca remains, also exhibit colonial paintings belonging to the Cusco School in which portraits of Incas and curacas of the seventeenth century.
We continue and go to the museum of Pre-Columbian Art, located in the Plaza Nazarenas belonging to the district of San Blas. Here are exposed archaeological objects and representative pieces to the different regions of ancient Peru, many of them stand out from the year 1250 BC to 1532 AD that initially were the domain of the Larco Museum in Lima.
Also called MAP Cusco, it has ten rooms categorized in an evolutionary way, there are the rooms of the Wood, Nazca, Mochica, Huari, Chimu, Inca, Viceroyalty, a room of Gold and finally the Silver Room, many of them telling us a story that perhaps we did not know.
The museum of Santa Catalina in the beginning was the House of the Chosen or the Acllahuasi, since in Inca times the most beautiful women of the Inca empire were confined there; after some time this place became a museum that exhibits Cusquenian paintings from the XVII and XVIII centuries among other traces belonging to the colonial era.
You can find it at Plazoleta de Santa Catalina n.º 401.
Do you want to know more about Machu Picchu and the Incas? Then Casa Concha is the right place, because here you will find the most complete collection of the Incas, among them are the archaeological remains found in the citadel of Machu Picchu.
The museum exhibits at least 400 Inca pieces, including what Hiram Bingham (American explorer who made Machu Picchu public) discovered; the Concha House is one of the places we should not miss, because it shows us how the Incas lived.
It is located at 320 Santa Catalina Ancha Street, a few steps from the Plaza Mayor of Cusco.
This museum has a variety of collections of religious colonial paintings, also has a courtyard with Renaissance architecture ranging from a stone arcade and tiles on the wall, decorated with a sink, it is also recognized because in its exterior walls is the "stone of the 12 angles".
To get to this museum we must go to Hatunrumiyoq street with the intersection of Herrajes street.
The Regional Historical Museum invites us to discover the importance of each of the periods through which Peru has passed, displaying a variety of paleontological and archaeological objects dating back to prehistoric times.
It is located on Garcilaso Street a few steps from the Plaza de Armas of Cusco, here you will find archaeological pieces ranging from pre-Hispanic to colonial times, for its part the house is also emblematic, as this was the home of the poet Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, one of the first Peruvian mestizos.
Qoricancha or Temple of the Sun is one of the constructions that surprised and enchants even today, despite having been largely destroyed, this place still shows the union of two Inca and Catholic cultures.
It has a lot to show, so visiting the museum of Qoricancha allows us to know more about the ancient inhabitants of Cusco, and what we can see are a collection of paintings, sculptures of sacred Inca idols and wood carvings that were very important in the Inca Empire.
This museum has five rooms in which they will explain us about the Inca evolution, you can visit it in the Av. El Sol, it is next to the temple of Santo Domingo, of reference the main track.
Located in the same Municipality of Cusco, this museum of Contemporary Art has more than 280 works that were made by local, national and foreign artists, among the oldest we find Remigia Mendoza's oil painting on the Vilcanota River.
It has three exhibition rooms in the Municipal Palace, another in the Chapel of San Bernardino and the last one in the Crafts Exhibition (Municipal Palace).
The museum of Popular Art has several representations of outstanding masters among them we find sculptures, photographs, ceramic works among other works of renowned artisans of Cusco.
It is one of the museums that exhibits several works of different Cusco artists, among them we can find the sculptures with elongated necks belonging to Hilario Mendívil and other artists. The museum is located in Galerías Turísticas on El Sol Avenue, a center belonging to the Municipality of Cusco.
Last but not least, we finish visiting the museums and we do not go to the museum of the Cathedral of Cusco, this place in its interior have valuable artistic works that were made by indigenous and Spanish artists.
Representations made from two points of view, inside you can see paintings, sculptures and carvings of the Cusco School belonging to the seventeenth century.
Actually the different museums in Cusco have many things to teach us, so I recommend that if you are going to visit the different museums make a visit plan, according to their schedules and distance between each one of them.
Visiting museums shows us the reality of each era, in which we can see the development of each moment that were reflected in paintings, sculptures, carvings and other objects that can be found in each of the museums.
Also, if you want to know a little more about the history of Cusco and Peru, this is one of the ways to get to know them.
The requirements to visit the different museums will depend on whether you are a national or foreign tourist.
National tourist: You must always have your valid ID card or foreigner's card in case you are a resident; these will be important, as they are required before entering these sites. Please note that it also applies to university students who can get a discount, but they must carry their university card.
Foreign tourists: Likewise, to enter the museums they must present their passport or identity card, as well as they will have to pay a fee per adult, foreign student and will have to present their international card (international Student Indenticard or ISIC in force), in which they must prove an age of 25 years maximum and carry their foreigner's document to enter.
Whether you are a national or foreign tourist, you must always identify yourself with your ID card to enter museums, archaeological sites and other entities, so always have these documents in hand.