Parade, festival, religious ceremony, historical reenactment, an echo of Inca mythology, and one big gigantic party; Inti Raymi is the embodiment of a city, a people, and the tangible evidence of their thriving culture in the 21st century.
In honor and worship of the Incan sun god Apu Inti Tayta, 150,000 Cuzqueños gather annually on June 24th, Winter Solstice, dressed in traditional ancient Inca-style clothing, masks, and hats to plead with the sun god, Inti, to return the sun. This ancient celebration of light and life is filled with vibrant dances, includes a mythical explanation of the origins of the Inca civilization, a ceremonial reading of the sacred coca leaves for wisdom on the future of the empire, and culminates with the centuries-old pilgrimage to the sacred wall of Sacsayhuaman (a UNESCO World Heritage site).
For the past six decades, Inti Raymi has grown to become an intricately designed, directed, and historically accurate commemoration of South America’s most advanced and mysterious civilization, the Inca. The experience of the Inti Raymi festival is unmatched in Latin America as a festival that brings together aspects of ancient Inca religion, mystery, beauty, dance and music thousands of feet above sea level in the Andes Mountains.
Paragon Expeditions is proud to share this amazing uniquely Peruvian festival with its travelers through an Inti Raymi expedition on June 19. Being in the city of Cusco during this celebration is a convergence of the sublime for any visitor eager to discover the true cultural expressions of any people or land. By the time the 9 days of celebration commence, the depth of perception you will have gained of the mysterious Inca empire, and the fatigue from dancing and parading through the flower-strewn streets will absolutely ready you emotionally and spiritually for the discoveries and revelations ahead. Discoveries that include The Lost City of the Inca, Machu Picchu, the Amazon rainforest, Lake Titicaca, the Andes Mountains, Quechua weavers and musicians, the Sacred Valley, Civeche, and the immense wealth of cultural riches Peru has to offer all of her travelers and people.
Header Photo Credit: McKay Savage