Plaza de Armas

Vacation Travel Guide
Plaza de Armas featuring a garden and a church or cathedral

Cusco’s busy main square has been the center of public life for centuries. Enjoy its spacious layout, ancient churches and restaurants.

Head to where the action is at the Plaza de Armas in Cusco, a large landscaped square bordered by shops, restaurants and ancient churches. For more than 500 years, the square has been at the heart of city life. Come to the plaza nowadays and you might see festivals, concerts and religious processions. Enjoy the lively atmosphere, admire the ornate lampposts and colonial archways and relax with a drink.

During the Inca Empire, the square was called “Huacaypata” (Square of Warriors) and extended as far as the adjacent Plaza del Regocijo. Ceremonies and military parades were conducted here and battle victories were celebrated. The Plaza de Armas has also witnessed historic events, including the execution of Túpac Amaru II who led a failed uprising against the Spanish in 1780.

Walk over to Cusco Cathedral on the northeastern side of the plaza. Step inside to view the hundreds of religious paintings. Head to the square’s southeastern side to see the 16th-century Church of the Society of Jesus. At first glance, the two churches look similar. Both have twin towers and comparable architectural designs but the cathedral is much larger and has a grand stone staircase in front.

Stroll under the colonial archways of the covered arcades that surround the square. Here, you’ll find some of Cusco’s finest shops and restaurants. The plaza attracts many street hawkers and persistent vendors. If you don’t wish to buy anything, simply smile and say “No, gracias” (No, thank you).

Plaza de Armas is located in downtown Cusco and easy to get to from all directions. The square is well-served by buses but many people navigate Cusco on foot as its winding, cobblestoned streets are best explored at a slow pace. Return to the square at night to see it beautifully lit up with spotlights. Enjoy the view from a seat by the large fountain or have dinner or a drink in one of the cafés overlooking the square.

Top Hotels Close to Plaza de Armas

Hilton Garden Inn Cusco
Hilton Garden Inn Cusco
3.5 out of 5
Santa Ana, Avenida Abancay 207, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $68 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Located in Cusco Historic Center, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Museo de Plantas Sagradas Magicas y Medicinales and Plaza de Armas. San Pedro Church ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (773 reviews)
"Great place to stay"

Reviewed on Dec 22, 2021

Hilton Garden Inn Cusco
Novotel Cusco
Novotel Cusco
4 out of 5
San Augustin 239 Esquina, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $69 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23
Located in Cusco Historic Center, this historic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Hatunrumiyoc and Plaza de Armas. UNSAAC Yale International Center and Museum ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (815 reviews)
"Loved staying here. Very convenient and close to everything. Staff is so nice and loved the ambiance. Highly recommend if you are planning to visit Cusco."

Reviewed on Jan 11, 2022

Novotel Cusco
Antigua Casona San Blas
Antigua Casona San Blas
4 out of 5
Calle Carmen Bajo 243, San Blas, Cusco
The price is $89 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Located in Cusco Historic Center, this spa hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Plaza San Blas and Plaza de Armas. San Blas Church and Olave Art Gallery are also ...
4.9/5 Exceptional! (826 reviews)
"Great hotel at a reasonable price, would definitely stay here again!"

Reviewed on Jan 5, 2022

Antigua Casona San Blas
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Plaza de Armas

Yabar Hotel Plaza
Yabar Hotel Plaza
3 out of 5
Loreto 115, Cusco
The price is $52 per night from Jan 19 to Jan 20
Yabar Hotel Plaza
Novotel Cusco
Novotel Cusco
4 out of 5
San Augustin 239 Esquina, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $69 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23
Novotel Cusco
Antigua Casona San Blas
Antigua Casona San Blas
4 out of 5
Calle Carmen Bajo 243, San Blas, Cusco
The price is $89 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Antigua Casona San Blas
Hilton Garden Inn Cusco
Hilton Garden Inn Cusco
3.5 out of 5
Santa Ana, Avenida Abancay 207, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $68 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Hilton Garden Inn Cusco
Palacio del Inka, A Luxury Collection Hotel by Marriott
Palacio del Inka, A Luxury Collection Hotel by Marriott
5 out of 5
Plazoleta Santo Domingo No 259, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $180 per night from Jan 21 to Jan 22
Palacio del Inka, A Luxury Collection Hotel by Marriott
JW Marriott El Convento Cusco
JW Marriott El Convento Cusco
5 out of 5
Esquina De La Calle Ruinas 432, y San Agustin, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $173 per night from Feb 6 to Feb 7
JW Marriott El Convento Cusco
Aranwa Cusco Boutique Hotel
Aranwa Cusco Boutique Hotel
4.5 out of 5
San Juan De Dios 255, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $157 per night from Jan 18 to Jan 19
Aranwa Cusco Boutique Hotel
Ramada Costa Del Sol Cusco
Ramada Costa Del Sol Cusco
3.5 out of 5
Santa Teresa N 344, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $54 per night from Jan 31 to Feb 1
Ramada Costa Del Sol Cusco
Andean Wings Boutique Hotel
Andean Wings Boutique Hotel
4 out of 5
Siete Cuartones #225, Cusco, Cusco
The price is $63 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Andean Wings Boutique Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.