The Festival of the Sun-Inti Raymi
Each Year on June -24 (The winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere) Cusco celebrates The Inca Festival of the Sun –Inti Raymi. Created by Inca Pachacutec, Inti Raymi was a tribute to the respect of the Sun God Inti. Nowadays, the festival draws thousands of locals and international visitors to the ancient Inca Capital–Cusco. To celebrate one of the most important events of the calendar year.
Inti Raymi Today
The modern-day re-enactment of Inti still retains all of its majestic glory, although without the procession of ancient mummies and just 1 animal sacrifice at the culmination of the day’s celebrations. The celebrations start in the morning of the large open cancha at the front of the Inca Temple of the Sun– Korikancha. With the arrival of representatives from the tribes of the Inca Empire (Qollasuyu, Kuntisuyu, Antisuyu y Chinchaysuyu) the Sapa Inca opens the festivities with invoking praise to the Sun God –Inti. From Korikanca the royal entourage continues the short distance to Cuscos Plaza De Armas. A ceremonial reading of the sacred coca leaf then takes place to foresee the fate of the Inca Empire for the upcoming year. The Ancient Inca archaeological site of Saqsayhuman is where the final part of the re-enactment is played out. Thousands of local spectators crowed the surrounding hills for a glimpse of the ceremony while premium grandstand seats are available in the main area of Saqsayhuman. Dressed in full costume, the Inca delivers his final words in Quechua before a ritual sacrifice of a llama. The festival finishes as the air fills with the sound of horns, panpipes and beating drums.