It’s that time of year when the nation comes alive and embraces Semana Santa. Last week, revellers immersed themselves in the religious gathering that leaves no attendee dissatisfied and underwhelmed. This is Peru’s finest religious festival, and visitors from all over the globe flocked to major cities to join the festivities.
Those who wish to indulge in the kaleidoscopic celebrations can choose to stay in any of the luxurious Inkaterra properties during their visit to Peru, from the majestic heights of the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel, to Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba, a property perched in the rolling hills of the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
In Cusco, this celebration takes on a slightly different expression, according to tradition and local customs – in 1650, a major earthquake ripped through the city of Cusco, destroying buildings and taking lives along the way. Struck with fear and chaos, residents had no where and no one to turn to apart from the Cathedral of Santo Domingo, a place that remained untouched. Legend has it that a painting of a crucifix that hung majestically inside the sanctuary protected the people inside.
Ever since, the city has held its annual El Señor de los Temblores (“The Lord of the Earthquakes”) festival on the Monday between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. Holy week (Semana Santa) commences on Palm Sunday, kicking off a seven-day celebration that sees locals feasting and enjoying local culinary delicacies such as empanadas, maicillos and condesas as well as the traditional 12 dishes of the region, prepared on Easter Friday in commemoration of the 12 disciples.
San Pedro market in particular is a hot spot for the famous food offerings of Semana Santa, with male and female vendors flocking to the market to sell the celebratory sweets and empanadas.
Those who wish to travel to Cusco to celebrate Easter can further immerse themselves in the history of the vibrant city, with a stay at Inkaterra La Casona, a 16th century colonial manor, situated on a cobbled street in the heart of Cusco.
Inkaterra La Casona preserves the culture and traditions of the ancient Incan civilisation through its intricate decoration, pieces of colonial furniture, murals, traditional textiles and stone, reflecting the patina of several eras. The attention to traditional detail means guests of the hotel will experience the tranquility and repose once offered to the illustrious travellers who visited in earlier times.
For more information on Inkaterra La Casona, please click here.