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Cusco, the "Old" (Incan) Capital   1 | 2 

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Note: For more information about these pictures, read about our Cusco city tour.

Plaza de Armas — Cusco's main square, with its two cathedrals, Cathedral de Cusco and La Compañia de Jesus.
Plaza de Armas — Another view from the Plaza de Armas, looking up the residence-lined hill toward San Cristobal.
Temple of the Sun — The Convento de Santo Domingo, towering atop the last remnants of the Incan Temple of the Sun (the round part).
Temple of the Sun — Some of the most impressive Incan stonework anywhere can be found in the Temple of the Sun. The rounded area dates back to the 17th century, while the convent on top of it was built by the Spanish — of course — using stones from other parts of the temple.
Convento de Santo Domingo Courtyard — The inner courtyard of the Convento de Santo Domingo. We always find it ironic that these beautiful sanctuaries came to exist at the expense of destroying equally-if-not-more beautiful Incan temples beneath them.
Three Temples — Doorway to the Incan room of three temples. Although the convent was originally built over this, a huge earthquake in 1950 exposed it again, giving archaeologists a chance to restore it. Note the shape of the doorway, and the windows to the back: the Incans were very big on trapezoids, and good thing, because the added stability the shape provides against earthquakes is what kept structures like this one intact, while 90% of the Spanish construction around and on top of it was reduced to rubble. Way to show those Spanish!
Temple of the Moon — The temple of the moon, one of the five chambers inside the Temple of the Sun. Here, where the Incan temple has been restored, the contrast of the Incan architecture next to the elaborate Spanish archways becomes rather apparent.
Temple of the Sun and Gardens — Gardens below the Temple of the Sun, which once showcased gold and silver replicas of animals and plants. Today, the gardens are preserved, and an archaeological museum lies below the ground.

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Last updated: 25 Feb 2002 13:15:49