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  • Writer's pictureSotirios Seridis

Cusco Digital Nomad Guide

Deep within the marvelous Peruvian country lies Cusco, a city filled with history and culture. An archeological site and the land of Machu Picchu, the place has also been deemed a hotspot for workers all around the world to visit and stay. Join them and enjoy the fantastic beauty of the city as we present you with the Cusco digital nomad guide.


Cusco Digital Nomad Guide
Cusco Digital Nomad Guide

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Is there a digital nomad visa for Peru?


We have long covered this in our Lima digital nomad guide. In a nutshell, most American and European countries can stay for 180 days without any restriction, with the possibility of extending the visit. Peru’s Consular Services site can provide you with more details.



Is Cusco good for digital nomads?


We know that Lima, the capital city of Peru, is an international hub, but Cusco draws its fair share of attention. Chosen by many for its rich architecture, this lovely city began earning a reputation as a digital nomad spot.

With affordable costs, hiking opportunities, and, of course, cultural activities, Cusco has a lot of budget perks to choose from. The local currency is the Sol (the Spanish word for “sun”), and the exchange rate is 1 USD = 3,91 PEN. Most importantly, just like any other country, moving away from the capital makes living on a budget easier.




Other than that, Cusco is a very international-friendly place. The main language is Spanish, so you should have a phrase or two prepared for daily routines. However, as a tourist hotspot, hotels, restaurants, and bars usually have bi-lingual staff for the occasion. So you will certainly be covered for the most part.

The only drawback that many digital nomads mention is internet speed. The average download speed is 16,90 MPBS, and the upload speed is 5,90 MBPS. Although it's not fast, it does let you get your job done. The tricky part is finding a stable connection around town. We might suggest here that, before choosing accommodation, take your time to read reviews on the site’s connection, as it can very much vary depending on the place.





When is the best time of the year to visit Cusco as a digital nomad?


In terms of weather, visitors prefer to come to the Inca territory between June and September. The seasons are divided into dry (April-October) and wet (November-March). The average weather range is 32°F to 66°F (0°C to 19°C). Keep in mind that temperatures can still go as high as 84°F (29°C) and as low as 27.5°F (-2.5°C).


Despite being beautiful all around the year, the wet season can be tricky. The day can go from sunny to torrential rains in a matter of seconds. You might want to keep that in mind if you’d like to visit outside of the heavy tourist season, which coincides with the dry season.





Is Cusco safe?


The short answer is yes. You should be able to walk around without worrying too much about safety. This is mostly because there is a lot of tourist movement, so you will hardly find yourself walking alone in the street.


That said, the safest area is the historical center, and as you wander away from it, you might not be so lucky. Cusco has a nominal rate of crime, such as robbery or mugging. The most efficient way to avoid it is to take the precautions you’d take anywhere else: mind your belongings, avoid walking alone in the middle of the night, etc.

If you find yourself lost at night in the city, you can ride a cab to your place. Just keep in mind that there are some unregistered taxis out there, so, when picking up yours, just check if they have an “official” registry box on top or an official registry number. Apps like Easy Taxi (by Cabify) or Taxibeat are useful to have for these situations.





What is the cost of living in Cusco?


All in all, Cusco is a relatively affordable city within the region. If you allot around USD 800 to your expenses, you will have a good budget-conscious life here. On the other hand, if you can stretch yourself to USD 1800 or more, you should have a comfy and relatively carefree stay.


In terms of housing, the average price for an Airbnb studio is USD 41. If you are going for the community aspect of the digital nomad experience, a bed in shared accommodation on the same site can go for an average of USD 25.




If you want to live the full experience, cuisine included, local gastronomy is quite accessible. You can eat out for as low as USD 2, or have a full meal for 2 for about USD 25. Or maybe you need a drink at night. In that case, a pint of beer can be paid around USD 2. You’d pay the same for a coffee after your drink.

There are other costs you might want to keep in mind. Services for an 85-square meter apartment (electricity, gas, heating, etc.) can be settled for 60 USD, approximately. Adding internet service is about USD 35 more to that bill. In terms of transport, a one-way bus ticket is only a quarter of 1 USD. If you’d rather rent a car, 1 liter of gas is about USD 1,15.





What are the best neighborhoods to stay in Cusco as a digital nomad?


No Cusco digital nomad guide would be complete without a good overview of the best neighborhoods to stay in. Though small, this town has some strategic points to look for a place. Let’s jump right in.



San Blas

Once a prominent hotspot for Incan architects and artisans, this charming neighborhood is a piece of Peruvian history. It is still crowded with local craftsmen and women, keeping the vibe bohemian.


Digital nomads not only go for the laid-back feel but the amazing Peruvian coffee shops. We will cover some of them later on, but they are simply ideal spots for getting some work done while absorbing the local vibe. Plus, plenty of ex-pats choose to settle here, so you will probably find yourself speaking the same language with them.


Finally, though touristy, there are other neighborhoods where visitors choose to stay at. This means that you might get the best of both worlds: a digital nomad-friendly setting without the crowdy feeling.





Plaza de Armas

Now, if tourist areas make you feel safer when travelling abroad, then this is the place to be. The city center and main historical area, the “Arms square” tells the story of the city with a modern approach.


Having everything at hand is always important, and this is the exact spot for it. Restaurants, entertainment, hotels; anything you need is within walking distance. Moreover, its thriving nightlife makes it a must for many younger travelers.


Finally, if Spanish is a barrier for you, the concentration of English speakers is higher here. So, either the staff of the accommodations or other tourists, you will always find someone who speaks it.



San Cristobal

Of course, you might want to blend in with local cuzqueños. San Cristobal is a small neighborhood a bit away from the main square. Deemed more of an authentic experience of Cusco, this region is uphill, with amazing views of the city. If you want to do your cardio daily, it’s a great spot for staying. Otherwise, you might want to avoid it, as all the walking is uphill.





Magisterio

Of course, if you are in Cusco, you are expecting a lot of ancient architecture. But if at the end of the day, you need a little modernity, this neighborhood might be the place to go. A recent residential area, this place is also a little away from the downtown area, ideal for you to chill after seeing crowds all day.

If you use public transport, you are less than an hour away from everything. Plus, if you are living on a budget, this place has more affordable housing.



Lucrepata

If you always prefer the trending spot, Lucrepata is the San Blas’ younger sister. Cheaper and hip, it is a great choice if you want to be close to the action, see how the neighborhood grows, and still get the full Cusco experience, as this residential area is preferred by many cuzqueños.





Top 5 neighborhoods to stay in Cusco:

  1. San Blas

  2. Plaza de Armas

  3. San Cristobal

  4. Magisterio

  5. Lucrepata



What are the best coliving spaces in Cusco?


Though a thriving town, Cusco is still developing in terms of coliving. There are a couple of sites for you to choose from, but not as many as you would expect in a capital city, for instance. Let’s check some options for Cusco digital nomads.


If you have experience working from anywhere, you might already be familiar with Selina. A reliable alternative, the site has a couple of accommodations located on the Plaza de Armas. Strategically situated, you will find varying types of facilities depending on your needs.





Nomad Hideout can also be a viable option for your visit. Despite its limited number of rooms, the place looks quite comfortable, with the necessary amenities and good reviews from users. Besides, it’s used to receive people from all around the globe so that anyone feels at home.


Another possibility for you you search for a place is Gabino Home. Technically more of a local Airbnb site, you might find some exclusive listings here. The page offers both apartments and studios as well as rooms and beds in shared accommodation.





Three coliving options for digital nomads in Cusco:



What are the best coworking spaces for digital nomads in Cusco?


Probably, you’d want to get some work done in a nice coworking space. Lucky for you, Cusco has a couple of options for digital nomads to have an office space and do a little networking. Let’s check some of the best coworking spots in the town.


In the lesser crowded neighborhood of Wanchaq lies Ayni Center. With a modern facade and the necessary facilities, this coworking space has every perk of coworking: strategic location, good wifi service, virtual and regular offices, and consulting services. Not far from this option, you can find Genba as well. Just by checking the photos, you know that you will work in a cozy spot. Furthermore, you can use their meeting rooms, executive offices, and printing privileges.





If you already booked accommodations with Selina from Plaza de Armas, they also offer office amenities. It might be the exact combination between coliving and coworking you need. Otherwise, if you still need a coworking space within walking distance of the city center, you might want to go for Gen Up. With a more familiar community approach, these guys stay active with conferences, events, masterclasses, and all kinds of networking activities for you to meet the right people for your business.

Another option downtown is Coworking Cusco. They professionally promote themselves, talking more about business and facilities. Their private offices might be the best choice if your work involves multiple calls a day. CucsoWorking is quite similar and not far away. Users praise their stable wifi connection, comfortable and quiet ambiance, and even their lunches!





Best 6 coworking spaces in Cusco:



What are the best coworking cafes for digital nomads in Cusco?


Time for a good cup of Joe with your laptop (and your plug type A, B, C / 220V / 60Hz) somewhere nice. Let’s check some good options for digital nomads to work.


Cicciolina is actually a restaurant. But not just any restaurant; they describe it as an experience. The aroma coming from the kitchen, the excellent service, and the exquisite ambiance; these account for the charm of the place. Their space is ideal to use as your office while savoring the incredible food they have to offer. Jardin El Encanto is a greener alternative. Also praised for its beautiful surroundings, this restaurant has a view like no other. People find the place relaxing, with trees and leaves everywhere. It is definitely an ideal change of scene.





Speaking of green, Green Point Cusco is among the top chosen who prefer vegetarian menus. Its amazing cooking can only be matched by the beautiful ambience. Just beware, it is very popular!


But of course, if you came here for the coffee, Cafe Dwasi and Monkey Coffee are exactly what you are looking for. Both from a brewing tradition, not only their product is out of this world but also, they built lovely cafes for you to sit on and watch cuzqueñan life go by while you work. Peru has a strong coffee tradition, so be sure to check out these two amazing spots.





Best 5 working cafes in Cusco:



Closing thoughts on visiting Cusco as a digital nomad


Cusco is simply a place like no other. If you are fond of history and archeology, love being surrounded by green areas, and also need some nightlife to bust a move and enjoy, then you should not miss the Peruvian city. As described in our Cusco digital nomad guide, this city has everything for working travelers. It is affordable, accessible for visiting surrounding marvels, and quite prepared to receive visitors from all around the world. Come to the Inca region and fall in love with an authentic testament to the continent’s history.





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