Friday, February 19, 2010
We are finally in Cusco. - no kidding this time.
Well, we arrived by super-fast and comfy jetliner to Cusco the other day and now that we´ve had a chance to wander around for about three days I can safely say it´s a great place. We are lucky actually in that because of the closing of Machu Picchu and the fact that this is the low season, there are not giant busloads of tourists parading throughout the town and it has a fairly mellow and relaxed feel. You only need to glance at the huge offering of four star hotels, fancy restaurants, numerous artisan markets, and throngs of touts, souvenir stalls, and sellers of woven crafts to know that the supply right now far outstrips the demand and I´m sure in high season with the star attraction open for business, this place is pretty packed. Right now you´d never know that you were in South Americas most visited town. People here seem to be taking the bad turn of events in stride though and the town (the touristy parts anyway) has little evidence of the disastrous floods we´d read about in Lima. The previous photos with us smiling over Machu Picchu are, of course, fakes. A close inspection would reveal that we posed in front of a mural while staying in Lima. Abundant tourist trade has it´s upside as well. This is one of the only places that we´ve had a choice between many vegetarian places to eat and other, more gringo, kinds of food. I actually expected more McDonalds and Planet Hollywood kind of offerings, but Cusco is surprisingly small-scale so far.