During the Inca Empire, the Cusco Inti Raymi was the most important of four ceremonies celebrated in Cusco, as related by Inca Garcilaso de la Vega. The celebration took place in the Haukaypata or the main plaza in the city.
The Inti Raymi (“Festival of the Sun”) was a religious ceremony of the Inca Empire in honor of the god Inti, one of the most venerated gods in Inca religion.
According to chronicler Garcilaso de la Vega, Sapa Inca Pachacuti created the Inti Raymi to celebrate the new year in the Andes of the Southern Hemisphere. Since 1944, a theatrical representation of the Inti Raymi has been taking place at Sacsayhuamán (two km. from Cusco) on June 24 of each year, attracting thousands of tourists and local visitors.
The ceremony was also said to indicate the mythical origin of the Incas. It lasted for nine days and was filled with colorful dances and processions, as well as animal sacrifices to ensure a good cropping season. The last Inti Raymi with the Inca Emperor’s presence was carried out in 1535, after which the Spanish conquest and the Catholic Church suppressed it.
In 1944, a historical reconstruction of the Inti Raymi was directed by Faustino Espinoza Navarro and indigenous actors. The first reconstruction was largely based on the chronicles of Garcilaso de la Vega and only referred to the religious ceremony.
Inti Raymi is still celebrated in indigenous cultures throughout the Andes. Celebrations involve music, colorful costumes (most notable the woven aya huma mask) and the sharing of food. In many parts of the Andes, this celebration has been connected to the festivals of St. John the Baptist, which falls on the day after the summer solstice (June 21).
CUSCO INTI RAYMI ESCORTED DEPARTURE GROUP TOUR
June 21- Lima:
Upon your arrival into Lima you will be met and transferred to the hotel in exclusive zone of Lima in Miraflores for your overnight.
June 22- Lima:
In the morning, guided sightseeing tour to the most attractive and important sites in Lima, the “City of Kings”. The tour includes Lima’s Historical Centre, passing by Plaza San Martin, Plaza Mayor, the Government Palace, the City Hall.
After we visit the Convent and Church of San Francisco, the greatest monumental complex of Colonial Art in America and Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
The tour includes a visit to the Basilica of 21 altars, Convent of Cloisters, Capitulary and Clementine Rooms, Chorus and Library of the monks, a Museum showing 11 paintings of the Rubens School, the Sacristy with paintings of Surbaran and Ribera, its great patio decorated with Seville tiles of the XVIth Century, Moorish arches and underground Catacombs.
We visit, the Larco Herrera Museum, founded in 1926, showcases remarkable chronological galleries providing an excellent overview of 3,000 years of development of Peruvian pre-Columbian history. Located in a unique vice-royal mansion of the 18th century built over a 7th century pre-Columbian pyramid, the museum is surrounded by beautiful gardens.
The museum features the finest gold and silver collection from Ancient Peru. It also houses the famous erotic archaeological collection, one of the most visited Peruvian tourist attractions. For an unforgettable experience, Larco is one of the few museums in the world where visitors can also choose to enter the storage area with its 45,000 classified archaeological objects. Its masterpieces are considered worldwide icons of pre-Columbian art, after being exhibited in the world’s leading museums. Return to the hotel (B / L)
June 23- Cusco:
Early in the morning transfer to the airport for flight to Cusco. Upon your Arrival in Cusco, the ancient capital of the Incas, we greet you at the airport and transfer you to the hotel, brief orientation and a cup of traditional coca tea to assist in the acclimation to the 11300 ft. in the Inca Capital of Cusco.
After visit Cusco, and include: The Cathedral, Qoricancha, Temple of the Sun, the most important of Inca ceremonial sites. Later you will continue to the most important site of Sacsayhuaman, Tambomachay, Qenqo and Puca Pucara. We return to the hotel (B / L)
June 24: Inti Raymi Festival
We leave the hotel at 08:30 am and we walk to the Koricancha temple, according to the program, the ceremony starts at 9:00 am, here begins the festival with the participation of the people that arrives from the Four Suyos, each region dressed with specials costumes for this occasion; then, the Inca makes his entrance accompanied by his entourage to begin the ceremony where gives a greet to Sun God.
Then we will transfer to the main square where at 11:00 am the imperial entourage will move to play in scene the second part of the ceremony, the rite, “The Meeting of Two Worlds”.
Completed the second part of the festival, we will transfer our passengers by bus to the esplanade of Sacksayhuaman; the principal scenery to play in scene the Inti Raymi. in the place we take the lunch (box lunch), while awaiting the arrival of the Inca and his entourage.
Approximately at 13:30, the Inca makes his entry into the esplanade carried by his soldiers, in the Ushnu (ceremonial platform), the Inca and the principal authorities of the Empire celebrate with offerings, rituals and give worship to the Sun God.
At 15:00 approximately we return to the hotel.
June 25- Cusco – Machu Picchu:
Early in the morning after breakfast we pick you up at your hotel and take you to the railway station for the tourist class train to Machu Pichu. The 3 hour train for one of the world’s great railway journeys. T
his climbs out of Cusco on an amazing switchback track, then passes through traditional villages on the high plain, Inca ruins and rushing rivers. We’ll descend 1300 meters through the Sacred Valley of the Incas and follow the Urubamba river until the final stop at Aguas Calientes. Overnight at Aguas Calientes (B/L)
June 26- Machu Picchu – Sacred Valley – Cusco:
After breakfast we’ll take the 20 minute bus ride up to Machu Picchu, perched 600 meters above the river. Our guide will explain you the history and the myths that surround this archeological wonder.
MACHU PICCHU! The famous lost city of the Inca is one of the most magical and mysterious places on Earth! Stand 2,430m above sea-level in the middle of a tropical mountain forest.
In an extraordinarily beautiful setting, it was probably most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height, its giant walls, terraces and ramps seen as, if they have been cut naturally in the continuous rock escarpments. The natural setting on the eastern slopes of the Andes, encompasses the upper Amazon basin with its rich diversity of flora and fauna, the site is frequently shrouded in misty clouds pierced by the powerful equatorial Sun. Afterwards we take the bus for your return to the Aguas Calientes for lunch.
Aboard the train back to Cusco, we stop at Ollantaytambo Station on the Sacred Valley and continue to Scared Valley tour visiting Chincheros. Return to Cusco and transfer to the hotel (B/L)
June 27: Cusco – Lima:
Transfer from Hotel to Cusco airport for fly back to Lima and back home.
WHAT IS INCLUDED / NOT INCLUDED
Our Price Includes:
- Accommodation in 3* hotels with breakfast
- Meals as described in the itinerary, not including alcoholic beverages
- Transfers, tours and excursions as per itinerary based on private and group service.
- All internal flight tickets
- Vistadome first Class train tickets
- All entrance fees
Our price does not include:
- International flight to Peru and US$31.00 tax for all international air departures.
- All domestic flights, require a US$6.00 charge (airport tax).
- Personal expenses such as telephone bills, laundry expenses, beverages, etc.
- Insurance against theft, loss, illness and/or accident etc.
- Baggage porterage and other extras not specified.