When you think of Cusco, you think about the Incas, all the archaeological sites, and Peruvian cuisine. It conjures up images of mountains and a fairly cool temperature. What many visitors don’t realize is that Cusco also has a jungle, and it’s only a few hours’ drives from the city.
If you want to visit a more tropical climate while you’re here, La Convencion is an excellent choice. It’s a great place to relax and see many species of animals that you don’t get to see in the highlands in and around Cusco. So, sit back and read on to find out what to do in the city of eternal summer.
Visit the Waterfalls
The natural beauty around this city is stunning. There are waterfalls that cascade from the mountains and what better way to enjoy them by bathing there. One of the more famous and popular is Siete Tinajas. It’s a small drive from the city and is easy to get to in a tuc tuc.
Standing below the water falling on you is an excellent way to cool off in the middle of the day when the sun is at its hottest. It’s the perfect way to relax and enjoy the pretty surroundings.
Observe the Wildlife
As we already mentioned, there are many species of animals that you won’t find in Cusco. Peru has more variety of birds than anywhere, and you’ll find a lot of colorful varieties in La Convencion. If you’re lucky you might also see the spectacled bear, capybara, and a whole host of butterflies.
The fauna on display is also awesome, and you can even spot orchids if you head for a walk into the forest. You’ll be surrounded by banana, papaya, and mango trees, and will be able to sample the tasty fresh fruits for yourself.
Head to Cocalmayo
These natural hot springs are located beside Santa Teresa, and are possibly the best in the area. They are set below the towering mountains and beside the strongly flowing river. You can’t get much more picturesque than that.
It’s the perfect spot to relax after a day of exploring or hiking, and it’s most busy in the evenings. If you really want to take advantage and relax to the max, you can buy beers and wine to enjoy by the water as you listen to the rushing river.
Chocolate and Coffee Tours
Peruvian chocolate is fast becoming known as one of the best in the world. You can find a lot of places in the city of Cusco to buy and try it. However, it comes from La Convencion, so the real place to get it is here.
There are tours on offer for you to explore chocolate and coffee farms and to learn more about the process. You’ll be able to see every stage of how it’s made and try it in its raw state as well. Great for anyone who loves either product.
Try the Local Food
Yes, many of the things they eat are similar to the diet in Cusco, but there are a few things you must try when here. One of those is the fish paco that comes from the river. You can find it in Cusco, but here it’s fresh, and if you get it fried it can be super tasty.
It’s also no surprise that cold snacks are popular in such a warm place. Cremoladas are extremely popular with the locals. They are made from fresh fruit that’s been frozen and then blended for a nice slushy cool snack. Head to Misky’s for the best in town.
Hang Out at a Swimming Pool
If you still haven’t found enough ways to cool off in the heat, why not head to a pool? There is plenty of outdoor variety here to spend the afternoon. The most popular with the locals is Sambaray.
There’s a family pool and an Olympic sized one, as well as plenty of play areas for kids. You’ll find restaurants where you can enjoy a cold beer or the fish, paco that we mentioned.
Perhaps you prefer a bit of adventure while on vacation. Well, La Convencion offers it in the form of rafting on the fast river that runs from the Sacred Valley. You’ll find plenty of companies around that offer the trip, so why not add it to your itinerary.
How to Get There
You can travel to La Convencion from Cusco in around 4 hours if you get a shared car. You can also pay for it all to yourself, as it isn’t too expensive. Otherwise, you can go to a shared van or bus. These are more economical but can take a few more hours.
Things to Keep in Mind
Remember that La Convencion is a hot place, so you’ll want to take thin clothing to stay cool. Mosquitos are often buzzing around, so be sure to take repellent and any other precautions. The city is small, so you won’t find as many restaurants as in Cusco. As long as you’re prepared you’ll have a great time! Oh, and don’t forget your swimsuit!
Visit the City of Eternal Summer
Cusco is a fantastic city and there’s a lot to do, but if you want to head out and explore the jungle, La Convencion is the place to go. Enjoy all the attractions and try the food. We guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Written by: Liv Palmer