The Huayllay Stone Forest is located in the district of Huayllay, province and department of Pasco, Peru. It has an area of 6000 hectares. It has been protected since 1974 by the establishment of the Huayllay National Sanctuary. It is a natural Andean wonder, and is located almost 14200 feet above sea level.
To visit the Huayllay Stone Forest is to let your imagination run to the point of seeing the movement of the stones. In this place there are more than 4,000 rock formations, between cliffs and natural viewpoints that make this forest a truly impressive tourist attraction, just like the gigantic human profiles similar to a hiker or thinker; as well as figures that look like animals, like the turtle, the alpaca, the condor and the elephant. It’s amazing!
A visit to the forest of stones, carved by wind, lightning and rain for millions of years, is required to absorb the energy radiated by the magnificence of this place compared to the Shilin Forest of the People’s Republic of China and the Garden of the Gods in the United States, since the early decades of last century, according to scholars in the National Geographic magazine.
There is a legend about the Stone Forest that says that a huayeyna had two children who were shepherds who went out to work every day.
One day they disappeared and the very worried mother went to look for them in the forest.
She asked the condor who answered that he had not seen them, asked the nuns who said they had watched them pass by, did not know what direction to take, asked the alpaca and told her that the Japurin lagoon had eaten them.
Desperately he went to that lagoon and shouted to the four winds: Where are my children! Have you eaten them?
The lagoon replied: “I have punished them because they threw stones at me and disturbed my waters.
Give them back to me, the mother imposed herself. The lagoon asked for her soul in exchange for her children.
At such a request the progenitor gave up her soul for love, but this lagoon tricked her and turned her into a rock.
Since then, at the front of the “capuli” is a stone in the shape of a woman.
In thousands and thousands of years, the lagoon managed to trick the bear, the snail, the cobra, the elephant, the iguana and all the beings that we find today, transformed into stone, in the National Sanctuary of Huayllay.