Cultural Spotlight: A Peek at the Many Wonders of Peru

Que Pasa Calgary! Known as the soul of the Inca Empire, Peru has long been the source of deep fascination for many people around the world. Of course the striking vistas, rousing music and flavorful cuisine have only added to the country’s appeal. Here’s a peek at her many wonders:

History & Language

Mysterious, colorful, spiritual and fierce are just four of the words often used to describe the Inca Empire’s members. Historical records indicate that they ruled the country until the 1500s. At that time, Peru fell under Spanish rule. They remained under their oppressors’ governance until the country’s residents declared their independence on July 28, 1821. What followed were several conflicts and the country’s eventual reconstruction.

As a result of its history, Peru’s residents and dialects are quite diverse. Therefore, it is not uncommon to hear Spanish, Quechua and Aymara spoken by its native people. Some of the other countries that have had some form of influence on Peru’s population over the years are Japan, China, Africa, Germany and Italy.

Art & Music

That diversity can be found throughout Peru’s culture even to this day. It is especially apparent in the country’s art and music. They tend to be a harmonious fusion of Spanish, Andean, African and Andalusian elements. Take the country’s Mestizo and Baroque art movements for example. They are marked by bi-level reliefs and floral designs reminiscent of those found elsewhere in the world.

As far as the country’s traditional music goes, it often involves Mestizo chants, guitars and harps. Customary dances found throughout the country include the qhapaq qolla, tarkada, huaylas and the huanca. Costumes consisting of colorful scarves, masks and headbands are often used during the dances too.

Food & Festivals

Peru is also known for its amazing cuisine, which is often enjoyed during the country’s festivals. Food and beverages of note include humitas, bacalao, ceviche de corvina, chichi de jora and cau cau. Just like the country’s wonderful culinary delights, its festivals vary and are full of ethnic flavor. If you are ever in the country, ones to consider attending are the Inti Raymi, the Lord of Miracles and the Q’oyllur Riti.

Places to Go

Of course there is a multitude of beautiful, fascinating places to visit while in Peru too. Some of the top places are Machu Picchu, Cusco, Lima and the Sacred Valley. Besides Machu Picchu, highlights within those areas include the Monastery of San Francisco, the Cathedral of Lima and the Saksaywaman ruins. Because of the seemingly mortar free stone walls and zig-zag design, the Saksaywaman ruins may be of particular interest to those that are fascinated with ancient architecture.

To discover additional details about Peru’s interesting culture, be sure to visit the QPasa Calgary website often.