Museum of natural history of Cusco
The museum of natural history of Cusco is located in the Main Square of Cusco. This small but cozy place houses a representative sample of the flora and fauna of Cusco and Peru, from its prehistory to the present. The site also exhibits a collection of minerals, rocks, and crystals. However, one of its great attractions is the collection of fossil vertebrates such as: megaterium, glyptodon, mastodon and more. It also highlights the panels and displays dissected from: frogs, snakes, salamanders, lizards, turtles, butterflies and more.
All about the Museum of natural history of Cusco
The natural history museum of Cusco has its origins in the middle of the 20th century due to the initiative of the Faculty of Biological Sciences of the National University San Antonio Abad del Cusco (UNSAAC). After many years without a fixed location, the museum moved in 1992 to the university auditorium, located next to the church of the Company of Jesus, in front of the Main Square of the city.
The museum has a great variety of panels and dissected species of flora, fauna and even minerals. Its different representative species of frogs, toads, snakes, lizards, salamanders, turtles, felines, crocodiles, monkeys, birds, butterflies, insects and much more stand out. Definitely, its greatest attraction, due to its age and size, is a mastodon tusk.
The museum is located in the university auditorium of the National University San Antonio Abad del Cusco, next to the church of the Company of Jesus, right in front of the Main Square.
How to get there?
To get to the natural history museum, you simply have to walk a few steps from the Main Square of Cusco. From any part of the Historic Center of the city you can reach it on foot.
The flora and fauna of Cusco is diverse and surprising. They include animals and plants from Andean and jungle areas. Among the most important flora species are: orchids, coca leaf, cantuta flower, pines, eucalyptus, etc. Among the animal species the following stand out: the condor, the spectacled bear, the llama, the alpaca, the cock of the rocks, the vizcacha, the Andean puma and more.
Map to get to the Natural History Museum
The museum presents a sample of the different species of flora and fauna of Peru as well as the Cusco region, from millions of years to the present. In addition, the museum offers a geological collection of rocks, minerals and crystals. The paleontological section has exhibits of fossils of plants and animals such as: the glyptodon, the megaterium, the mastodon, the American horse and plant fossils.
Among the room dedicated to animals, a collection of taxidermized samples stands out, including jars of preserved animal embryos that include a human embryo. In the room dedicated to Peruvian flora, there is a collection of medicinal plants and microscopic fungi. The museum also includes dissected samples of amphibians, snakes, cats, birds, insects, butterflies, as well as panels that represent the animal and plant development of the coast, mountains and jungle of Peru.
- Foreign tourists: 2 Peruvian soles (0.6 US dollars, approximately).
- National tourists: 1 Peruvian sol (0.3 US dollars, approximately).
Hours of Operation
The museum is open to tourists from Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to noon. Also from 3 in the afternoon to 6 in the afternoon.
Photos of the museum of natural history of Cusco
The museum is an initiative of the San Antonio Abad del Cusco National University, which was founded during the Spanish colony in 1692. It is the third oldest in Peru, after the National University of San Marcos (Lima) and the National University of San Cristóbal de Huamanga (Ayacucho).
In addition to the natural history museum, there are many museums that the city of Cusco offers to its visitors. Some of the most important are: the Inka museum, the Coricancha site museum, the pre-Columbian art museum, the Machu Picchu museum of Casa Concha, the regional historical museum, among others.
The visit to the museum of natural history of Cusco is short. It can be done in 10 to 15 minutes. It is a good alternative to go with children. Especially with the little ones interested in animals. The collection of felines, monkeys, insects, and fossil animal remains may pique your interest.
If you like natural history, some other options during your visit to Cusco is to visit the Tipón Zoo, located in the South Valley (23 kilometers from the city). During your visit to Machu Picchu you can visit the butterfly farm or the botanical garden of Aguas Calientes.