Qoyllur Rit’I - the snow & ice festival
The Qoyllur Rit’I festival is known as the Andean festival, connecting the Catholic and the Inca religions. It takes place during the full moon phase in the week before Corpus Christi, so either in May or in June. Tens of Thousands of Peruvians come together in the Sinakara valley to honour the Lord of the Qoyllur Rit’I by dancing, singing and praying for three days and three nights. Different regions of the country send their own delegations, all dressed up in colorful costumes.
The three days of dancing and singing are followed by a 24 hour lasting pilgramage to the mountain top, carrying big wooden crosses and flags.
This celebration is about so much more than 'just' dancing and singing – it is about celebrating the planet and people's connection with the land they live on.
Please don't hesitate to contact us if you would like to witness this celebration first hand - we would be delighted to take care of your travel arrangements.
Virgen Del Carmen Festival
Each year during July 15-18, the usually sleepy village of Paucartambo comes to live to celebrate the Virgen del Carmen Festival.
There are different stories about the history of this festival, one of them claiming that the then ruler of Peru heard about a rock with an resemblance of the Virgin Mary. He personally went looking for that rock, and when he found it, he was so impressed that he hired a painter to draw the miracle on canvas. Only years later the painting was braught to Paucartambo, and since that time the Virgen del Carmen festival was celebrated anually.
Get ready for days filled with bands playing music, choirs singing and walking groups dancing through the streets of Paucartambo.
Fiesta de la Candelaria
The 'Fiesta de la Candelaria', also called the 'Mamacha Candelaria', is the biggest event in Peru and the third biggest event in whole Latin America.
Each year at the beginning of February (the main festivities run from February 2nd to February 12th), tens of thousands of dancers, musicians and visitors gather in Puno to worship the Virgin de la Candelaria - the patron saint of Puno, strongly associated with mother earth ('pachamama') and symbol for purity and fertility.
In 2014, it was declared an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.