7 museums that are highly recommended during your visit to Cusco
The city of Cusco is famous for being the capital of the Incas. There are important archaeological sites such as Sacsayhuaman and the Coricancha temple. Everywhere you can see the Inca history and architecture in the city. The best way to fully understand this history is through its museums. Get to know some of the most recommended museums that you should visit on your trip to the city of Cuzco.
Coricancha Site Museum
This museum exhibits Inca pieces, some found in the research work in the Coricancha temple. Its five rooms exhibit ceramics, metallic objects, lithics, textiles, textiles and even mummies where the realizations of cranial trepanations can be glimpsed. Its information panels give an account of the Inca presence in the city of Cusco.
The museum is underground as it is inside the esplanade of the Coricancha temple. At the entrance door you can get a tour guide for an additional cost. The visit is ideal to complement the tour of the Coricancha temple. Its office hours are Monday to Sunday from 9 in the morning to 6 in the afternoon.
- Address: Avenue El Sol s/n, Cusco. (Coricancha esplanade).
- Entrance fee: 15 Peruvian soles (or with the Cusco Tourist Ticket at 70 Peruvian soles).
Museum of Pre-Columbian Art
This museum, one of the best in Cusco, accounts for the various cultures that inhabited ancient Peru, especially the Incas and their passage through the city of Cusco. In total, it has 10 educational rooms that are up to 3 thousand years old. His collection is part of the Larco Museum in Lima. It stands out for its Mochica ceramics.
The museum also stands out for its collection of objects carved in wood, its relics of silver, gold and its Inca ceramics. At the entrance gate you can get an official tourist guide. It is located just a few steps from the Main Square of Cusco, in a colonial mansion. It is open from Monday to Sunday from 8 in the morning to 10 at night.
- Address: Plazoleta de las Nazarenas 231, Cusco.
- Entrance fee: Adults 20 soles, students 10 soles.
Cusco Cathedral Museum
The huge and famous Cathedral of Cusco has an on-site museum where works of art from the colonial era are exhibited. Its paintings from the ‘Cusco school’ (17th century) stand out, its sculptures of saints and virgins (the famous Señor de los Temblores stands out) as well as its set of chairs, sacristy as well as liturgical objects of silver, gold and precious stones.
The Cathedral of Cusco took more than a hundred years to build. The history of the city of Cusco is kept there. During liturgy hours (Sunday mornings) admission is free in the main hall. The rest of the days must be paid for admission and tour. You can also hire a tour guide at the door. It is open from Monday to Sunday from 6 in the morning to 8 at night.
- Address: Main Square, Cusco.
- Entrance fee: Foreign adults 25 soles, foreign children and Peruvian adults 13.50 soles.
Machupicchu Museum of the Concha House
This museum exhibits objects excavated in Machu Picchu at the beginning of the 20th century. It owes its name to the fact that it is located in the mansion of the Marquis of José Santiago Concha y Salvatierra (former palace of the Inca Túpac Yupanqui). Its permanent collection displays 360 Inca pieces as well as other colonial treasures.
The Inca objects exhibited in the museum were returned to Peru after spending nearly a hundred years at Yale University in the United States. Another part of these objects is found in the Machu Picchu Site Museum in the town of Aguas Calientes. The office hours are from Monday to Saturday from 9 in the morning to 5 in the afternoon.
- Address: Street Santa Catalina Ancha Nº 320, Cusco.
- Entrance fee: Foreign adults 20 soles, Peruvian adults 10 soles, foreign students 10 soles, Peruvian students 5 soles.
Inca Museum of Cusco
The Inca museum gives an account of the transcendental passage of the Incas through the city of Cusco. It also exposes the development of ancient Peru before the Incas. It is in charge of the San Antonio Abad National University of Cusco. It has an exhibition of textiles, ceramics, keros, silver artifacts, gold, instruments and even the replica of an Inca mummy.
The museum is located in a colonial mansion that was part of the palace of the Inca emperor Huáscar. In addition to the tour of the museum, the visit includes an exhibition of textiles made by the people of Cusco. The visit is from Monday to Friday from 8 in the morning to 6 in the afternoon (Saturdays and Sundays from 9 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon).
- Address: Cuesta del Almirante Nº 103, Cusco.
- Entrance fee: Foreign adults 10 soles, Peruvian adults 5 soles.
Museum and Catacombs of the Temple of San Francisco
This museum is located in the temple of the Franciscan order in the city of Cusco, built in 1572. The temple is famous for its catacombs, where the skeletal remains of Franciscan ancestors rest. Also for its immense canvases where it stands out: the ‘family tree of the Franciscan family’ of 12 meters high by 9 meters wide (one of the largest in South America).
The temple boasts a Baroque architecture of Romanesque and Plateresque style (the frontispiece). It also stands out for its interior colonial treasures such as its high choir carved in cedar. At the entrance door you can get a tour guide. Office hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to noon. In the afternoon, from 3 to 5.45 in the afternoon. Saturdays from 9 am to noon.
- Address: Square San Francisco s/n, Cusco
- Entrance fee: Adults 5 soles, students 3 soles.
Garcilaso House Museum
This museum is located in the colonial house where the famous Cusco chronicler ‘Inca Garcilaso de la Vega’ (1539 to 1616) lived, who was a descendant of the Inca royalty. There is also the so-called ‘Regional Historical Museum of Cusco’, where they exhibit: Inca ceramics, colonial paintings, musical instruments and more.
The tour of the museum is a walk through the history of Cusco, before the Incas, during the Inca period and in colonial times. Temporary exhibitions and cultural events are also held there. The hours of operation are from Monday to Sunday from 8 in the morning to 6 in the afternoon.
- Address: Street Heladeros 165, Cusco.
- Entrance fee: Included in the Cusco Tourist Ticket that offers admission to archaeological sites and museums in the city (70 Peruvian soles).
By Machupicchu Terra – Last updated, August 28, 2023