Anish, an Electrical Engineering major, studied abroad in Cusco, Peru during Winter Break 2017.
IF NOTHING ELSE, DON’T FORGET TO PACK: Sunscreen. Peru is very close to the Equator, so you’ll be getting a lot more direct sun.
ON SECOND THOUGHT, YOU CAN LEAVE AT HOME: Bugspray, if you are staying in high-elevation cities such as Cusco (it’s at 11,000 ft!). If you go to lower cities such as Lima, however, you might need it.
WHERE TO LIVE: Since I pursued a short-term study abroad in Cusco and surrounding cities, I stayed exclusively in hotels. There are plenty of Western-style hotel that won’t break the bank.
BEST PLACES TO EAT: In Cuzco, any restaurant around the Plaza de Armas is almost guaranteed to be great! My professor suggested to head for any restaurants that had tourists within.
FAVORITE CULTURAL ACTIVITY: Indulging in the local bars was a pleasure. There are a number of local drinks, such as the Pisco Sour and Chicha, which are a huge part of Peruvian culture.
FAVORITE PLACE TO STUDY: Most of our studying was while traveling, through guided tours and hiking.
MUST-TRY LOCAL DISH: Lomo Saltado is near and dear to almost every Peruvian, and I could tell why — it’s delicious!
BEST PHOTO OP: Macchu Picchu, without a doubt.
BEST PURCHASE: Alpaca sweaters, scarves, hats, and gloves!
MOST INTERESTING CLASS: The class I went with was ANTH199 HS1 Peru Heritage & Study Tour, with Professor Silverman. The class was stimulating and it was a joy to be guided by Professor Silverman and her expertise.
BEST PART OF THE PROGRAM: Visiting the city of Ollantaytambo was incredibile — we were surrounded by mountains with Incan ruins on almost every side. In the afternoons we could go hiking to visit them, and we even found an old Incan cave!
MOST MEMORABLE TRIP: Macchu Picchu is stunning and absolutely incredible. Pictures struggle to do it justice; if anything, make sure you visit the site!
IF I COULD DO IT OVER AGAIN… I would try to spend more time in Ollantaytambo. This city, though relatively small, offered so much to the adventurous tourist. You can easily go hiking multiple days, to different ruins each afternoon!