The town of Chinchero is located 30 kilometers northwest of the City of Cusco, in the province of Urubamba, at 3,762 m.a.s.l. overlooking the snowy Salkantay, Verónica and Soray.
The inhabitants of Chinchero inhabit the Inca constructions that they have inherited from their predecessors, which remain almost intact. You can see typical constructions such as doors and windows with greater width below and narrower above.
The archeology in Chinchero is another of its attractions, you can see platforms, a warehouse and an irrigation system, which suggests that it was an agricultural production area.
It is one of the few places in Cusco that conserves the Inca urban layout in a visible way. Chinchero was founded by the Inca Túpac Yupanqui in the middle of the most beautiful countryside in order to serve as a resting place.
The Inca ordered the erection of shrines, baths, platforms and the great royal palace in 1480.
One of the typical characteristics of the inhabitants of Chinchero is their clothing, since many of them continue to wear the type of clothing that their ancestors wore.
The women wear dark colored skirts and vests, mainly black, with red and green decorations. His hairstyle consists of fine braids.
The men wear sheep wool ponchos, vests, baize pants, and colorful chullos. On their feet they wear the typical leather or rubber sandals.
The town of Chinchero, is located 28 km from the city of Cusco, in the province of Urubamba, at 3,780 meters above sea level, and Inkayni Peru Tours, has a tourist package that we are sure will encourage you to make the Tour to the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
It should be noted that Chinchero is surrounded by three important peaks: Salkantay Verónica and Soray; It is also surrounded by two lagoons, Huaypo and Piuray, the lagoons can be seen on the way.
If you visit the city of Cusco another impressive destinations that you can visit are the tour to rainbow mountain peru or the humantay lake tour from cusco, which only takes one day. But if you are gonna to stay more days in Cusco, other archaeological places you can know will be the choquequirao trek peru, the salkantay trek to machu picchu, and the classic inca trail 4 days 3 nights.
Among the main attractions of Chinchero we find the church of Nuestra Señora de Monserrat (1607), located in the main square. It was built on the Inca walls of the Tupac Yupanqui palace. These walls are part of the foundation of the colonial construction that can be seen today. Its decoration with paintings and murals of religious figures, demonstrate the great importance that religion has for the inhabitants of Chinchero, devotees of the Lady of Monserrat, today Virgin of the Nativity to which they dedicate an altar.
If you want to participate in mass in Chinchero on your trip, you should come on any Sunday morning, the only day the church opens its doors.
House of Mateo Pumacahua
Another of the tourist attractions that Chinchero presents is the house of Mateo Pumacahua, Inca chief during the 18th century. Which in one of the revolutions under the indigenous cause, was captured, tried and beheaded, being dismembered and his remains exhibited in Arequipa, Cusco and other regions. You can also visit the Piuray Lagoon, located 28 kilometers from Cusco, which supplies water to the city of Cusco since Tahuantinsuyo times thanks to the great work and knowledge of the Inca empire who transported their waters to the imperial city through underground aqueducts.
The Chinchero Market is held on Sundays in the main square, the native inhabitants are present with their colorful typical clothes.
Originally the Chinchero Market was to exchange products between the villagers (economy based on barter). Currently they maintain this custom and in turn sell their pre-Columbian style handicrafts and fabrics to people who come to the city exclusively to know and obtain these majestic products in the Chinchero Market.
This covered market in Chinchero is popular among citizens and tourists who travel through Cuzco, a place where we find a series of stalls that offer all kinds of handicrafts, such as objects made of leather, traditional clothing from the area, bags, scarves, even some typical products, aromatic herbs and healing properties. It is also possible to find the traditional Peruvian hats that serve to protect you from the cold, a classic souvenir.
There are different stalls where very typical dishes are prepared so that tourists can consume them during their walk through the market, a way to try the most classic flavors of this area of ??Peru during the walk through this traditional market.
The people of Chinchero are characterized by their weaving skills. The entire textile process, from wool washing to the final product, is produced in the workshops of artisan associations. The garments are made from sheep wool and little alpaca.
To achieve such striking colors in their garments, the villagers use cochineal and plants that grow in the same district.
Chinchero is an ideal place to learn spinning, dyeing and weaving techniques; Also to taste their stews: tasty stuffed rocotos, stew, rabbit or guinea pig pepián, olluco with meat, kapiches cheese, chuñocola, lawa and kapchi; and drinks such as craft beers, chicha, hot water, among others.
It is advisable to go to the Chinchero Market early every day to take advantage of the time and be able to visit the different stalls, buy some souvenirs and enjoy the best flavors of Peru. In addition, the views that can be seen from this privileged place are always recommended to photograph and enjoy. The hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. approximately every Sunday.
The important agricultural area of ??approximately 43 hectares was developed during the Inca period.
In the Chinchero Ruins, its stairs, Inca walls and beautiful platforms stand out; here the ancient settlers used to graze their camelids, they also cultivated the land with various products, which served as food for their settlers.
In the grounds of the Chinchero Ruins, several pieces of ceramics, skeletal remains and stone works were found that are currently exhibited in the Site Museum.
Currently, this religious sanctuary is a tourist attraction, where the works made by the famous Cusco painter Diego Quispe Tito stand out.
On Sundays, there is a fair where you can still trade through barter or exchange.
It is believed that part of the town of Chinchero was built on Inca remains.
Generally one arrives in Chinchero on the way back to Cusco (Sacred Valley Tour or Pull), it is an hour from Ollantaytambo, and about 40 minutes from Cusco.
Chinchero was an important urban center whose main center was located where the church is today, in its surroundings formidable walls of assembled polyhedra are exhibited that form retaining walls shaping the platforms, we can also see large rooms with windows, niches, doors and accesses.
The current main square, where Sunday fairs are held, concludes with an Inca wall on the eastern side, which has 12 niches, each 2m high and 1.50m wide. This wall in turn serves as a face and containment to another plaza that acts as a court in front of the Church.
Also in the area we find the remains of three shrines called Titiqaqa, Pumaqaqa, Chincana; which are huge outcrops of limestone rock carved carefully, by ancient Peruvians, in the form of seats, stairways, cupboards and canals. There is a group of platforms built obeying the conformation of the terrain.
- Entrance fee: The visit to the Chinchero Ruins you need the Cusco tourist ticket.
- Partial Entry: S / 10 Nuevos Soles.
- Hours: Every day from 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Chinchero Site Museum
In the Chinchero site museum the visitor will be able to find a collection of cultural assets, mainly furniture that for the most part were found in archaeological excavations in the area. Also, ceremonial and utilitarian ceramics, lithic metal, stone objects such as mortars to grind grains and plants, a large piece of stone carved in the shape of a puma, typical clothing of the area, skeletal remains, an ethnographic collection that consists of farming instruments, of fabrics and other materials.
In a second room there is an important collection of paintings from the Cusco School, colonial painting from the 17th and 18th centuries and two mannequins dressed in typical costumes of the region.
We suggest a visit to the Sunday market, the beautiful colonial church and the pre-Hispanic buildings that surround the square.
- Entrance fee:
- National S /. 4 (New Sun).
- Foreigners S /. 7 (New Sun).
- Hours: Every day from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Address: Plaza de Armas, Chinchero District.