Dive into the Inca world and discover the tradition of the Sun celebration in Peru, also called Inti Raymi. Pachamama invites you to celebrate the Sun and to take part in traditional rituals with the Peruvian population.
In Cuzco - at the heart of the ancient Inca Empire - every June 24th the local population pays tribute to the Sun God.
The birth of the Inti Raymi in Peru
Established more than 6 centuries ago by the Inca Emperor Pachacutec, the Sun celebration - Inti Raymi in Quechua - is at the centre of a traditional ancestral celebration at each winter solstice in the southern hemisphere. The Incas worshiped the Sun and regarded him as their father, one and only universal God. So they pay him tribute by many sacrifices so that their annual harvests are abundant and they will never get hungry. At the time, the celebration took place in Plaza de Armas - the main square of Cuzco - where the great people of the Empire were waiting for their God, the Sun.
The Sun celebration today
Stopped for several centuries after the Spanish conquest, the Inti Raymi resurfaced in 1944. Today, the staging of this great traditional celebration begins at the Temple of the Sun “Qoricancha”, with the invocation of the Sun God. His will will then be glorified by the high priest on the Plaza de Armas. Then cusqueños and foreigners travel to Sacsahuayman, where the third and greatest act of the representation of the Inti Raymi takes place with traditional music and dance. Sacsayhuaman in Quechua means place where the hawk is satisfied.
The rites of the Sun celebration in Peru
Several rituals are celebrated in this fortress built according to the Inca architecture with sometimes in animal shaped large stones. A jora chicha - a fermented drink made from corn - is first offered to the Sun to thank him for the agricultural yield of the previous year. Then, the sacred fire is lit at the center of the amphitheater, and then two llamas are sacrificed, one white and one black, and offered to the Sun God. A legendary day in Cusco in the heart of the rites and beliefs of the Incas.