How to explore Cusco?

For many people Cusco is the most dreamed place. The city and surrounding areas are full of exciting history and images etched in our brains. The sight of Machu Picchu is so impressive that it brings more than 2 million tourists to the region every year. But Machu Picchu is not the only attraction to visit. There are dozens of others that easily will blow you away. However, to visit these attractions a tourist ticket or “Boleto Turistico” is needed. But what is it? Why are there 3 tickets and what can you visit with it? Here is a dedicated article about the different circuits, the prices, where to use it and a few tips to use it appropriately.

What is the Boleto Turistico?

The “Boleto Turistico” is an entrance ticket required for most of the archaeological sites and museums in Cusco.There are different types of “circuits “, which makes the entire experience of planning a visit a bit more complicated. And let’s put it out there, these tickets are not made for those who travel on a tight schedule. Here is a summary of the different point we suggest.

What is included in the Boleto Turistico?

In Cusco there are 3 separate Boleto Turisticos, offering pre-defined “circuits” that can be bought independently from one another. If you wish to visit one or more sites within a specific circuit, you can purchase the partial ticket related to this circuit.

However, if you decide to go to several sites included in different circuits, you will need to buy two or more Boleto Turisticos. In this case, it will be more interesting financially to buy the integral ticket, which is valid for 10 days. Here are the details:

Circuit 1: The four ruins near Cusco city

Sites Included: Sacsayhuaman – Qènqo – Tambomachay – Puka Pukara

Circuit 2: The City of Cusco and the south side of Cusco

Sites Included: Regional Historical Museum – Museum of Contemporary Art – Folk Art Museum – Koricancha Site Museum – Native Art Center Qosqo – Monument to the Inca Pachacutec. In the south valley: Tipon – Pikillaqta

Circuit 3: The Sacred Valley

Sites Included: Pisac – Ollantaytambo – Chinchero – Moray

Note: The Salineras de Maras or Maras Salt Ponds is run independently and is not included in any Boleto Turistico. To enter, you will need to pay an entrance fee at the site. The price is 10 soles.

Ticket prices and validity

Integral ticket:

This is the full ticket. If you are planning to explore as much as possible the Cusco area, then this is the ticket for you

Access to all the circuits within 10 days of purchase General admission for foreigners: 130 Soles (45USD).

Students aged 18-25, holding an ISIC card: 70 Soles (25USD).

Children under 10 years old: Free.

You can enter each site only once.

The ticket price does not include transportation, tours or guide service.

Partial ticket:

If you only want to visit a couple of the sites or if you are with very limited time, a partial ticket offering only one circuit is best. If you plan on visiting sites in two different circuits, the Integral ticket is better value.

Each circuit costs 70 soles (25USD) for foreigners.

There are no discounts for children or students.

Circuit #1 is valid for only 1 day while circuits #2 and #3 are valid for 2 days each.

You can enter each site only once.

The ticket price does not include transportation, tours or guide service.

Note: For the purposes of the Boleto Turistico, a foreigner is described as any person who doesn’t hold Peruvian nationality. Non-Peruvian residents of Peru (or any other country in South America) are not entitled for the promotional price.

Where to buy your Boleto Turistico?

 Each site in the circuit is able to sell you any of the entrance tickets. If you prefer purchasing the tourist ticket in Cusco, you will need to visit COSITUC on Calle Arequipa A-2.

Tips for buying:

You must provide a passport to be able to buy your tourist ticket.

You may be asked to show your passport at any/all of the ticket controls, so make sure to take your passport with you. The ticket is valid from the day of purchase. You must write your name on the ticket. They are non-refundable and non-transferrable.

How to visit the circuits?

As we said before there are three circuits and all located in different areas of Cusco and the Sacred Valley. To visit some or all of the sites requires a little planning and below you have some tips that will help you to explore Cusco properly.

How to visit the sites in Circuit 1?

Circuit 1 is not too far from the center of Cusco. Around 30-minute walk from town. It is possible to visit all of the sites by walking or by taxi. You will even pass the 8-metre statue of Christ in route. If you want to learn more about the sites, hiring a tour service will be required. See our tour itinerary.

How to Visit sites in Circuit 2?

Circuit 2 This option you can visit by your own. is mainly museums in the city of Cusco. To go from one museum to another you do not need to drive, it can be done all by walk.

How to Visit sites in Circuit 3?

Visiting all of the sites in circuit 3 is slightly more difficult. The sites are spread out all over the sacred valley and there are several options and possibilities of how to visit, depending on your preference and budget. It is worth noting that many people include a visit to the salt ponds of Maras in this circuit. The ticket for circuit 3 is valid for 2 days, so it is a little more flexible.

By your own.- You can visit the sites of the circuit 3 and Maras by using a local colectivos, bus or a private taxi and doing some hiking/walking. The beautiful landscapes are worth the effort but it required more days.

With organized tour. –  Our Sacred Valley  tour takes you through the most beautiful landscape and sites. We take you through the different route than the classic circuit in order to avoid the big crowd while you are  visiting the valley.  Start by visiting Chinchero, then Maras Saltponds, then Moray inca site, then Urubamba, then Ollantaytambo, finally you can take the train to Machu Picchu. So, do the entire west side of the Sacred Valley maximizing your travel time and transportation costs on the way to Machupicchu. Then on the way back, you could visit Pisac, Taray, Ccochawasi and finally Cusco. the secret is the early start.

All of the information you need about the Boleto Turistico to make your trip to Cusco and the Sacred Valley a success.