For spectacular views over Cusco's terra-cotta rooftops, head to San Blas. This is where the Incas brought the choicest artists and artisans, culled from recent conquests, to bolster their own knowledge base. The district has maintained its Bohemian roots for centuries and remains one of the city's most picturesque districts with whitewashed adobe homes and bright-blue doors. The area and the surrounds is one of the trendier parts of Cusco, with several of the city's choicest restaurants and bars opening their doors here. The Cuesta de San Blas (San Blas Hill), one of the main entrances into the area, is sprinkled with galleries that sell paintings in the Cusqueña-school style of the 16th through 18th centuries. Many of the stone streets are built as stairs or slopes (not for cars) and have religious motifs carved into them.
May 29, 2009
I was expecting something above average, with upscale or unique artistry. Not so. The shops display the same old same old you can find everywhere in Cusco, only they might be merchandised a bit more creatively. This is a very overrated area. The area around our hotel, Casa Andina Private Collection, had better shopping. I found more interesting, unusual and updated clothing and artwork.