Easter is moving closer and what better way to spend it than in the company of great food, friendly people and rich cultural traditions. If you enjoy being part of traditional cultural ceremonies and rituals while travelling, Semana Santa (Holy Week) in Peru serves as a greatest opportunity to achieve just that.
Furthermore, for the duration of the exclusive experience you can enjoy the high quality services from any one of the luxury hotel resorts around Peru and thereby adding a little pampering to your cultural holiday.
There are several options as to where to experience the festive and colorful processions in Peru but the most popular and well-known celebrations take place in Cusco, Ayacucho and Arequipa. In Cusco, the esteemed Inca capital, the colorful celebrations revolve around the patron of the city; Señor de los Temblores meaning Lord of the earthquakes. This patron has been popular since May 31st, 1650 where a terrible earthquake struck Cusco and the procession of the statue of the Lord of the Earthquakes, given to Cusco by the Spanish king, caused the earthquake to stop instantly and miraculously. The festivities begin on Easter Monday with a procession of the before mentioned statue from the cathedral and around Plaza de Armas, an event unique to the region. On Palm Sunday called Domingo de Ramos, people attend church to commemorate the entrance of Jesus to Israel, on Holy Thursday all the churches are open and it is said that if you visit 7, you can make a wish. Thursday is also the day of the traditional food feast where people join together to eat 12 local and traditional dishes in honor of the Last Supper. Lastly Good Friday is spent mourning the death of Christ. For anyone planning to visit Cusco during this time Holy Week is a unique opportunity to explore the offers of the city such as experiencing the archeological site of Machu Picchu whilst observing or participating in local cultural traditions.
In Ayacucho some of Peru’s best religious celebrations take place and people flock to the region to experience and take part in them. Beginning on Friday before Palm Sunday the meeting between Jesus and his mother Virgin Dolorosa is re-enacted followed by festive celebrations on Palm Sunday. After the commemoration of Jesus’ death on Good Friday there is an open air crafts market held on Saturday with great food and music. With the beautiful Andes serving as the background scenery Easter Sunday is marked by joyous festivities marking the resurrection of Christ with music, fireworks and an abundance of food.
The Arequipa celebrations offer a great opportunity to experience the beautiful white colonial city and the breath taking Colca Canyon as well as the unique cuisine for which the city has gained recognition while taking part in the most culturally and religiously important event. The festivities take place in the central square and follow the celebration pattern of most other Peruvian cities but on Easter Sunday it sets itself apart through the burning of an effigy of Judas signifying justice and punishment of the traitor. The act is followed by fireworks lighting up the sky giving a suitable end to the celebrations.
Whether your trip is planned around these joyous celebrations or it just happen to coincide with them it is highly recommended to take advantage of the opportunity and gain the intense experience of becoming a participant of the deep cultural practices. Furthermore the celebrations offer the possibility of combining the exploration of archeological sites with cultural traditional celebrations all the while enjoying a luxury stay at one of several five star hotels and resorts located around Peru. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a great offer or tailor your own trip fitting your specific personal needs and preferences.