updated 2/17/2010 9:04:42 PM ET 2010-02-18T02:04:42

Peru's government is cutting air fares and hotel rates hoping to draw tourists to the Incan city of Cuzco even though the country's top tourist destination, the nearby Machu Picchu fortress, remains inaccessible.

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Tourism Minister Martin Perez says the promotion begins Thursday and will be extended first to domestic tourists before being offered to international visitors.

Perez says the offer will include 50 percent price cuts for air fares to Cuzco and rooms at the city's main hotels.

Officials are trying to restore a rail line to Machu Picchu that was damaged by rain-fueled landslides and floods in late January.

The train is the only route to or from Machu Picchu and some 4,000 tourists were stranded for up five days in villages near the ruins.

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