THE HIDDEN 5000 YEAR OLD CITY OF VICHAMA NORTH OF LIMA SEES THE LIGHT
At only 159 kms North of Lima in the Province of Huara you will find the small District Town of Vegueta, which until recently was a sleepy town of farm workers squeezed between the road side and the Pacific Ocean. Its only claim to fame was the presence of the island in the bay where the South American Liberator General San Martin disembarked, after bypassing the Spanish fortress of San Felipe in the Lima Port of Callao. He later went on to the Provincial Town of Huara from whence he made the Historic Declaration of Independence from the Spaniards on a balcony, on July 28th 1821 - a balcony still to be seen today.
However, a year ago there was discovered a 5000 year old city in the nearby countryside, thus displacing nearby Caral from its former and also recent discovery as the oldest city in the Americas. On the anniversary of the vent, the local authorities organised a special event with over two thousand people attending, which included a big party on the Plaza de Armas Main Square with local Peruvian bands and singers. There was also a ceremony of so called "Pago a la Tierra", a payment to the Pachamama - Mother Earth as the local farmers have practised since immemorial times.
A 4000 YEAR OLD GEOGLYPH UNDERGOES MAINTENANCE
The Special Project Naylamp-Lambayeque started the work of cleaning and maintenance of the geoglyph, called the "águila milenaria", which is over four thousand years old and shows the figure of an eagle. It was discovered around ten years ago by the archaeologist Walter Alva of the Lord of Sipan fame. The historic geoglyph, located three kilometres from the Chiclayo District of Oyotún, on the right bank of the River Zaña in Northern Peru. It is made out of slate stone is over 60 metres long by 50 metres wide. According to scientists, the valley where it is located was occupied by a local culture about 4000 years ago and the authorities have decided to make periodic maintenance of the site in order to avoid the deterioration over time.
YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE A TRAIN BUFF TO ENJOY THIS RIDE!
The tourist train between Lima and Huancayo will run again this Friday June 27th to the Valley of Mantaro. There are also two more trips scheduled for the 11th and 26th of July, as announced by the operator, the Empresa Ferrocarril Central Andino (FCCA by its Spanish acronym).
The train will leave at 7 AM from the Estación de Desamparados, Train Station, located just beside and behind the Palacio de Gobierno Presidential Palace in the Centre of Lima. It will arrive to the Estación de Huancayo Train Station at around 19:00 hours, after a trip of some 12 hours and after crossing, amongst other points, the Estación de Galera Train Station, considered the highest in the world at 4,782 metres above sea level. This time, as on previous trips, the train will make two tourist stops, the first one at the Estación de San Bartolomé Train Station and the second one in the Galera one mentioned above. On both occasions there will be photo opportunities. Also, to reach its destination, the tourist train will go through 69 tunnels, cross 58 bridges and 6 zigzags, which can all be observed from the comfort of your coach. The cost for a normal return coach ticket, coming back in the evening the next day is 165 soles for adults and between a 100 and a 130 soles for children. In Tourist Coach the return tickets are 260 soles for adults and between 160 and 190 for children. For further information you can call (Lima 226-6363 ext 222 or 235), or check out their web page: www.ferrocarrilcentral.com.pe
NORTHERN PERU DEPARTMENT OF LAMBAYEQUE TO BE SEAT OF NEW BIO FUEL PLANT
A group of businessmen, including representatives of the Company Heaven Petroleum Operation have shown interest in investing in sowing up to 50 thousand hectares of the locally so called Piñón Blanco or Barbados or Purging Nut (Jatropha curcas
) to be used as the raw material for the production of up to 120 thousand gallons per day of bio diesel. The idea is to cultivate 5 thousand hectares in the Santa Lucia de Ferreñafe community and an additional one thousand hectares in the San Jose community. This will allow for a production of 12 thousand gallons of bio diesel, which will be bought by the industrial group to be processed in its industrial plant, thus assuring a market for this product. The nut has been chosen because of its high oil content, plus the fact that it does not need arable land for its production and also very little water. Its residues, after being pressed for oil, are an excellent raw material for the industrial production of tints and fertilizers. It also contains very little sulphur, which makes it very environmentally friendly.
INTERNATIONAL MARATHON FOR SECOND YEAR IN THE COLCA VALLEY
More than 50 marathon runners have accepted the invitation to participate in the Second International Marathon to take place on July 10th in the Colca Canyon in Arequipa. Runners coming from Europe, the United States, Peru and other South American countries will prove their skills and stamina in this exhausting and tough sports event in one of the world’s most profound canyons. The race will start at 3200 metres above sea level in the town of Cabanaconde and take the runners down into the depth of the valley more than a 1000 metres to the Colca River and then it is uphill again until reaching the Tapay Village and the Sangalle Valley with its incredible natural beauty. It is expected that the runners from Sweden, the UK, the US and Italy and Peru, will be able to break the former record of two hours and 25 minutes. The event will be accompanied by a festival at the Plaza de Armas Main Square of Cabanaconde.
CHANCHAMAYO CELEBRATES THE VTH TOURISM WEEK IN THE CENTRAL JUNGLE AREAS WITH HOMAGE TO COFFEE
The central jungle Department of Chanchamayo has declared June 24th as the "Day of Coffee", thus rendering tribute to one of the main crops of the area. Different agro industrial companies and local Universities will participate with stands showing the process of coffee planting, harvesting and its preparation including toasting and grinding and brewing, offering free cups to the estimated 2 to 3000 visitors expected in the area that week. There will also be gastronomic fairs with typical local dishes and drinks. This, coupled with local shows, with dancing and bow and arrow competitions, seems to set the stage for a real jungle party. The area and its green certified coffee has positioned itself very well in the international markets for these products over the last few years and most of the produce is today being exported with a green label.
FINDINGS IN SACSAYHUAMÁN FORTRESS SHOW INCAS WORSHIPPED ANCESTRAL MUMMIES
Recent excavations and studies conducted by the Cusco chapter of the National Institute of Culture (INC by its Spanish acronym) in the Archaeological Park of Sacsayhuaman discovered structures and areas showing possible religious aspects of the Incas, such as the worship of their ancestors' mummies.
The works were carried out in the so called Huaca Inkil Tambo, an Inca historical centre registered by the INC, which after several decades of being discovered has been the focus of meticulous archaeological excavations and studies during the last months.
The temple, known as "Inca Jail" (mainly because part of it is made up of a conglomerate of carved big stones), was probably used as a real life residency for the ancestors’ mummies, because it was neither a cemetery nor a mausoleum.
According to Washington Camacho, head of the Archaeological Park of Sacsayhuaman, the place is an important complex and its main function could have been to accommodate mummies of elite members or monarchs of the Tahuantinsuyo, because the main stone has carvings, among them five niches where human remains were possibly placed during the Inca times. The practice of treating their ancestor’s mummies as live monarchs and paying homage to their remains has been amply treated by Spanish chroniclers and other writers, but now it seems that one of the places where the cult actually took place has been revealed for the first time.
PERU OFICIALLY RECOGNISES 5 DIFFERENT RESERVES FOR 14 DIFFERENT UNCONTACTED ETHNIC GROUPS
At least 14 different ethnic groups live in special Amazon reserves set aside for the purpose of protecting their right to self governance and self determination when to come out of their so called "voluntarily isolated condition" and integrate into the rest of society. That however seems a long way off. Most of these tribes fled into the furthest reaches of the headwaters of the rivers during the time of the rubber boom during which they were ruthlessly hunted down to be used as slave labour in the rubber tapping areas. The threat of catching communicable diseases such as flu and others, have kept them in isolation since the start of the twentieth century. The Peruvian authorities recently denied their existence but recent photographs of people pointing arrows at small aircrafts flying close to their areas, seems to prove the opposite. The Brazilian indigenous state organization FUNAI, recently denounced the appearance of groups of un-contacted indians fleeing into Brazil. On the Peruvian side they have been running into illegal loggers and other subjects, which, breaking the law are turning these areas into no mans land.