QOYLLORITY 4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
(Festivity of Qoyllority)
Qoyllority is a Quechua word meaning "snow star" or "brilliant snow".
The inhabitants of this zone are a stream of Taytacha Qoylloriti (The Lord of the snow).
This old religious procession is only practiced by the inhabitants of the Grandes Andes. every year, a few days before the celebration of the Corpus Christi, every small village or clan send a delegation of colorful dancers and "pabluchas" to the Chapel of the Lord Qoylloriti.
This happens at the beginning of Sinakara mountain in the village of Mawayany, at 4,600 meters above the sea level.
The "pabluchas" represent alpacas and are intermediaries between the Lord Qoylloriti and his men.
Day 01: Cusco - Mahuayani
We leave the city of Cusco in a private bus, and drive along the Cusco – Puerto Maldonado highway in the direction of Tinki (3,800 meters) and Mahuayani, where we will arrive at 03.00 pm approximately. On the way, we stop in Urcos, where we visit a beautiful lake with the same name. We then go on to Cattca, an agricultural and cattle raising community where we appreciate the region's spectacular views, following to Ocongate, the capital of the district of the same name. Then Tinqui, starting point for most treks in the Ausangate area, and finally Mahuayani (4,600 meters) after an approximated 7hres's drive. In the afternoon, we take the chance to visit the local market, before having dinner at our camp nearby.
Day 02: Mahuayani - Sanctuary of Qoylloritti
We wake up at 07.30 am and after our breakfast; we start our hike up towards the Sanctuary of Qoylloritti, located in a breathtaking spot, surrounded by snow-capped mountains. We slowly hike through an uphill trail along which we will encounter 14 crosses that are venerated; the last one is already located at the Sanctuary. Upon arrival, we will be accommodated at our camp and enjoy free time in the afternoon. The display of activities at the Sanctuary is impressive, as well as the number of pilgrims attending this festivity year by year. In the evening, we can attend to the mass at the Sanctuary. There are two ceremonies, one at 06.00 pm and the other at 08.00 pm. Then we have dinner and camp at the Sanctuary.
Day 03: Sanctuary of Qoylloritty
This day is fully spent at the Sanctuary, following the activities of the pilgrims. We attend the "Alacitas" market in the morning. This is a very curious display in which one buys miniature goods such as trucks, houses, cattles, university titles and others, with money that is only valid during the Qoylloritti festival, according to one's real wishes. The legend says that whatever you accomplish in this game will come true thanks to the power of the Lord of Qoylloritty.
The Mass of the Soul at the Sanctuary's atrium at 10.00 am is the next event followed by the "Pablitos" mass at 12.00 pm. The afternoon is reserved for other activities, for anyone wanting to join them. There are activities: the procession of the Lord of Tayancani and the Virgin, the several dancing performances, the mass at the Sanctuary at 06.00 pm and the singing to the Lord at 07.00 pm. At night, after dinner, we enjoy the spectacular "Burning of Castles", in which wooden constructions with fireworks are burnt, followed by the "Child's Dance".
Afterward, the pilgrims ascend to the snow-capped mountain and glacier to bring down the crosses to the Sanctuary.
Day 04: Sanctuary of Qoylloritty – Mahuayani -Cusco,
After an early wake up at 07.00 am, we pack our bags and get ready for the pilgrimage. We wait and attend the Blessing Mass at 10.00 am and at noon, then lunch, and after we return to Mahuayani. In the afternoon, we board our private transportation back to Cusco (5h), where we expect to arrive around 06.00 pm.
- Pick up from your hotel in the morning and transfer in bus to Mahuayani, the starting point of the pilgrimage
- English speaking professional guide
- Cook and cooking equipment
- Horsemen and horses (to carry tents, food and cooking equipments)
- Emergency horse
- Accommodation for our guides, cooks and horsemen
- Meals 3 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 3 Dinners & snacks
- Igloo tents: 2 people in each a 4-people-capacity tent, to allow for higher comfort and a safe keeping of backpacks
- One mattress per person
- Dining tent with tables and chairs
- Kitchen tent
- Toilet tent
- First-aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
- Private transportation from Ocongate to Cusco, including transfer to your hotel in Cusco
- Breakfast on the first day
- Tea service and dinner on the last day
- One sleeping bag per person
What you need to bring and carry:
- A backpack with a change of clothes for the whole period of the trek
- Rain jacket or poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco)
- Strong footwear, ideally trekking or sport shoes
- Flashlight and batteries
- Camera, films and batteries (batteries consume more quickly under cold conditions)
- Toilet paper
- Snack: biscuits, energy bats, chocolate etc.
- Non-disposable canteen and sterilizing tablets (ie. Micropur)
- Cash in soles and or US$
- Optional: walking sticks or poles
Optional services to be hired:
- An extra horse to carry your personal items: A horse can carry up to 20 kg.
- Sleeping Bag rent