From Quechua "the navel of the world", Cusco is the majestic heiress of the Inca empire, the Tawantinsuyo - or what remains of it. Located at an altitude of 3400 m, it has about 300,000 inhabitants. For a long time, Cusco was a crucial crossroads on the Trans-Andean economic communication axis; however, with the concentration of commercial activities in Lima (colonial capital), the imperial capital fell asleep and was forgotten for a long time. The awakening had to wait for the arrival of tourists, amazed by the Inca walls that dot the city or by the Temple of the Sun, the Qoricancha, the supreme center of the Inca religion turned towards the powers of nature. Today, the city centre is a subtle and enchanting blend of Inca architecture and Spanish colonial style, overlooked by an imposing White Christ (Cristo blanco). A stroll through these pretty quiet streets, which lead to the Plaza de Armas with its churches and gardens, is really something magical.