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Best Times to Visit Cusco

The best time to visit Cusco is from June to mid-September. Though temperatures hover in the mid- to upper 60s throughout the year, the city sees fewer rain showers during its winter months. Still, this is peak tourist season, so expect plenty of fellow trekkers beside you as marvel at iconic sites. To escape swells of tourists and high room rates, visit during May or between late September and early November. Avoid visiting between late November and April, when heavy downpours delay and dampen exploration. Whenever you decide to plan your trip, bring warm clothing to arm yourself from the chilly nighttime temperatures, which dip into the low 30s and 40s.

Best Months to Visit

U.S. News editors analyzed weather and price trends to recommend the top times to visit.

best time to visit
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Weather in Cusco switch to Celsius/mm

Average Temperature (°F)

Average Precipitation (in)

Data sourced from the National Climatic Data Center

December-April

If you don't mind getting wet, visit during Cusco's summer season for unbeatable hotel prices and fewer tourists. But beware: If you have the intent of trekking to Machu Picchu, the Inca Trail closes during the month of February for maintenance. Also, heavy summer rains leave the trail muddy and difficult to hike. On the bright side, if you do decide to visit during these wet months, you'll find the rain doesn't halt activity in Cusco city. Colorful fiestas, including Carnaval and La Virgin de la Candelaria, take place at this time of year.

Key Events: 

  • Fiesta da Ollantaytambo (January 6) 
  • Fiesta da San Sebastian (January 20)
  • La Virgin de la Candelaria (February)
  • Carnaval (February)
  • The Lord of Earthquakes (March-April)

May-August

Winter in Cusco is beautiful: The weather is dry and the streets are dominated by colorful outdoor festivals. Daily highs hover in the 60s, which are perfect for exploring Cusco or trekking to Machu Picchu. The season's only caveat is its popularity. Winter draws an influx of European, North American and South American vacationers, so you should book your accommodations and tours at least three months in advance, particularly if you're planning to travel between June and August. Your best chance of missing the crowd is traveling at the beginning of the winter, in May. That said, don't expect Cusco to be deserted and booking a couple of months in advance will ensure the best deals. 

Key Events:

  • Cruz Velacuy (May 2)
  • Señor de Torrechayoc (May)
  • Quylllur Rit'i (June)
  • Corpus Christi (June 11) 
  • Festival of the Sun (June)
  • Pachamama Raymi (Earth Mother Day) (August 1) 

September-November 

With reduced hotel rates, fewer crowds, and comfortable 60-degree daytime temperatures, spring is splendid in Cusco. However, those planning to tour the fascinating ruins should note that this shoulder season experiences some light rain showers. Though you won't have to compete with as many travelers, you'll want to make your travel arrangements a couple of months in advance to ensure availability.

Key Events:

  • Trujillo International Spring Festival (September)
  • La Virgen del Rosario (October)
  • All Saints Day (November 1) 

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