Thursday, June 2, 2011

A Unique Blend: Qosqo

Qoricancha & St. Dominic's Convent

Archaelogical site near Qoricancha

Merchants' parade at Plaza Mayor

Plaza de Armas (Plaza Mayor)

History of the Incas mural by Juan Bravo

Plaza Sto. Domingo/Merchants Parade

Cuzco side street

Plaza San Francisco food stall

On Tuesday morning during Semana Santa, the week before Easter, Cuzco came alive with a parade of the merchants. Merchant associations from the altiplano to the pacific coast, from Peru to Argentina, brought their finest costumes, music and dance steps, trooped from Plaza Sto. Domingo to Plaza Mayor (de Armas) and onto Avenida El Sol.

For about 3 hours, onlookers were treated to a show by clam diggers to shoe makers, vegetable growers to fishermen, and so on. In the holiest of weeks, an Inca tradition prevailed.

The city of Cuzco (or Qosqo) is a UNESCO World Heritage. It is a blend of two equally dramatic cultures of empire builders, the Inca and the Spanish. Although the Inca Empire (1400 to early 1500) is fairly recent and short lived, it left an impression on Cuzco, literally. Many of the Spanish colonial structures are simply built on the foundations of Inca structures. One can't escape the other walking through the streets, the churches, numerous museums of the city.

The people, predominantly Quechuas or Ingas, and the city live up to the stature and billing as a heritage site. They contribute to the feeling that one has actually traveled far distance, in time and to a unique destination.

Please click the link for the Mural of Juan Bravo, Cuzco