A highlight in the religious schedule. In our culture, it is held the 1st of November and prepared by those who are still living in the earthly world. On the 2nd of November, we remember the deceased with religious processions towards the graveyards, accompanied by music and dance. The relatives have a toast in front of the graves with plenty of “chicha” and beer, and offer food, fruits and all the things that he liked to the deceased.
Hope exists beyond life, and that’s why the people from Cuzco prepare an altar with all the foods and drinks that their loved ones liked the most. It is said by the Andean tradition that the 1st of November at midday the deceased come from the beyond in order to visit their relatives and their towns, as well as enjoying the altar and confirming that they are being remembered on Earth. However, they will have to come back to the other world before midday on the 2nd of November.
DECEMBER 24th 2013 – CHRISTMAS AT CUZCO
The “Santurantikuy”, a Popular Arts Fair at Cuzco
The worldwide celebration of Christmas has a special shine in Cuzco, where it is surrounded by different activities. Each 24th of December, the Main Square holds the biggest Popular Arts Fair in Peru: the “Santurantikuy” Fair.
This festival began a while after the spanish colony was established in Peru, in the city of Cuzco. When the catholic beliefs were absorbed, the “Santurantikuy” Fair started out in every town or community’s Main Square. It is a Popular Arts Fair where the quechua word “santu” (saints) and “ticuy” (selling) already says it all.
Despite the religious impositions, the Andean people didn’t forget their spiritual traditions, which were kept in secret. According to their beliefs, nature had its own spiritual icons: the “Apu” was the hills’ spirit; the “Pachamama” was the Earth; and the “Inti”, the Sun.
Nowadays, the Popular Arts Fair is one of the biggest traditional fairs in Peru. It is held in the sidewalks of Cuzco’s Main Square. The “Santurantikuy” is a market where the craftsmen offer the most diverse figurines which will cheer up the Christmas festivities and lay next to the mangers which are built in houses and churches.