If you’re a fan of craft shops, boutiques, and markets, then shopping in Cusco is the thing for you! However prices in Cusco can vary a great deal for the same item.
It all depends where you look, and how good your haggling skills are! For example, around the city center and Plaza de Armas things tend to be more expensive. Yet just two or three blocks away you can buy the same items for MUCH cheaper. Take a look at our guide to shopping in Cusco and find a new place to buy your favorite things!
Here is our ultimate guide to shopping in Cusco:
San Blas (also known as the District of the Artists) is a charming bohemian neighborhood just a couple blocks from Plaza de Armas. Here you can find music workshops, jewelry, souvenirs, and craft shops with hand-made goods and textiles of excellent quality.
It is also the place to find wonderful art galleries, the two most popular owned by the Mendivil family, who are famous for their long-necked angel and saint statues.
As Cusco is the center of tourism in Peru, it offers many places for buying and reparing electronic equipment. Here are a few stores if you are looking for a new camera or need to fix your current one:
- Avenida del Sol: From Plaza de Armas, take a left on Avenida del Sol and on the right side of the street you will find a number of camera shops offering single shot cameras, DSLRs, equipment, printing services, etc. Ask for prices at a few stores before making your purchase, even though these stores are near each other they can have varying prices
- Chanintec: (Qollacalle 300) – this place is recommended for repairing services. They will give you a diagnosis in less than 24 hours only for 10 soles
- Nishiyama: (Mantas 190 and Truinfo 346) – has a good selection of equipment and offers repairing services, but they are closed on Sunday.
If there is one market you must visit in Cusco, it is the Mercado San Pedro. The largest market in Cusco, here you will find food, drink, clothing, herbal remedies, everything you can imagine all under one roof.
The Mercado San Blas is a smaller version of the same, and still worth a visit if you are in the San Blas area.
There are many in craft markets in Cusco. The largest one is Centro Artesanal Cusco (on the corner of Avenida del Sol and Calle Tullumayo)
Other options include:
- Mercado de Arte San Blas (Plaza San Blas): Saturdays 9am-6pm, here you will find authentic Peruvian crafts, jewelry, clothing, souvenirs, and if you’re lucky, local musicians playing!
- Artesanias Maky: (Carmen Alto 101, San Blas)
- Taller Olave: (Plazoleta San Blas 651)
- Galeria Latina Cusco: (Plazoleta de las Nazarenas 221)
- Centro de Textiles Tradicionales: (Av. del Sol 603) Dedicated to fair trade practices, this is an excellent place to browse handmade authentic Peruvian crafts
- Outside Cusco, the towns of Pisac and Chinchero are also known for their markets and hand-made goods.
Alpaca wool is the most common material for sweaters, ponchos, scarfs, blankets, etc. It is soft, warm and unique to Peru.
However, many vendors may tell you they are selling real alpaca wool, but it is not. It is almost impossible for a tourist to tell the difference so here are some places that sell real alpaca wool:
- Alpaca’s Best: (Portal Confiturias 221)
- Alpaca Andean Souvenirs: (Palacio 135)
- Sol Alpaca: (Santa Catalina Ancha 379)
- Kuna: (Portal de Panes 111)
- Alpaca Treasures: (Heladeros 172)
- The streets of Portal de Panes in Plaza de Armas and Santa Catalina Ancha also have several good options
There is really only one shopping mall in Cusco, Real Plaza, located about 15 minutes outside the city center by car. You can take a cab there easily but remember, don’t accept the first price the drivers give you. Haggle!
- Real Plaza: (Collasuyo 2964) – the only real mall in Cusco
- Centro Comerical Paraiso: (Calle Nueva) – here you will find electronics, toys and second hand clothing and shoes
- Centro Comerical Satamayor: (Marques 233) – great for jewelry, clothes and sunglasses
- SBS Bookshop: (Avenida del Sol 864) – there isn’t a huge selection of books in Cusco, but if you’re looking for something specific, your best bet would be this store. They have the most variety of books in English, including sections on travel, cooking, language, culture, fiction, non-fiction and business books.
- Genesis bookstore (Santa Catalina Ancha 307) – here you will find novels, photography, cooking and language books
- San Blas Plaza bookstore: (San Blas Plaza) – a few novels but mostly books on the history of Peru, Cusco and the Incas
- Jerusalem: (Heladeros 143) – this is the largest book exchange in Cusco, where you can exchange 2 of your books to get another. Great for travellers who prefer to swap books instead of buy new ones to carry around!
Because of Machu Picchu and other hiking areas near Cusco, the city provides a wide range of outdoor gear. Here are a few which offer the best quality:
- The North Face: (Portal Comercio 195), (Plazoleta Espinar 188), (Real Plaza Mall-Collasuyo 2964) – this well known brand offers high quality, reliable gear
- Tattoo Adventure Gear: (Calle del Medio 130) – offers a great selection of shoes, backpacks, and equipment
- Cordillera: (Carcilaso 210) – similar options to Tattoo
- Rockford Outdoor Experience: (Portal Carrizo) – another reputable retailer
- Calle Ayachucho (intersects with Av. del Sol)- on this street you will find many stores that offer tvs, computers, phones, accessories, etc.
- Radio Shack (corner of Ayachucho and Av. del Sol)
- Centro Comerical Paraiso: (Calle Nueva)– here you will find cheaper options but maybe lower in quality
If you want to shop where the locals do, head to the streets around the San Pedro Market – Calle Nueva, Tecte, Pera and all around that area. Find cheap clothes, shoes and everything you can think of! Otherwise, try these options:
- Real Plaza: (Collasuyo 2964) – the only mall in Cusco
- Topitop: (Heladores 111) – junior/women’s clothing
- Hilo: (Carmen Alto 260) – women’s clothing
- ALDO: (Portal de Panes) – women’s shoes
- BATA: (Marques 220) – women’s shoes
- Jetset: (Marques 279) – shoes: running, casual and formal