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Chincheros Introduction
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In order to enter to Chinchero it is necessary to have the only tourist ticket ($10), since the entire Chinchero is located on Incan ruins. Visiting hours go from 7:00 to 17:30 hrs.


The temple
It is located in front of the main square. It had been erected on the Incan walls of the palace of Túpac Yupanqui and the dimensions of the temple give account of the significance that, from colonial times and even before, had the curacas of Chinchero. It is also an excellent example of the richness of churches of Cusco towns. Its construction was finished in 1607.

The church is composed of Incan stone structures, which were used as the foundations of the colonial construction and molded the design. The entrance door faces the Main Square and it is placed on one of the side walls. The inner walls and the roof are covered with wall painting of filigrees and religious motifs.

On the side wall it is possible to see a broad painting that represents the Virgin of Monserrate, in the middle, with an interesting view of the town. The canvass was painted in 1693 by Francisco Chihuantito. The church only opens on Sundays for the morning mass.


The murals
The murals of the temple of Chinchero also express the enormous significance that had this region. The Virgin of Monserrate, the procession of the cacique Pumacahua and the defeat of Túpac Amaru stand out in the outer area of the façade. It is interesting seeing a struggle between two mythological beings in heaven: a puma bites the neck of a dragon or Amaru. Those are the heraldic emblems of the rival caudillos.

When Pumacahua ordered to paint the mural in his own town, he wanted to emphasize the ancestral character of the conflict in order to put down the rebel spirit of the inhabitants. The puma and dragon allegories are not simple decorations but, as Macera states, they would enable to easily identify, remembering the last names, the main protagonists of the drama: the puma would represent the cacique of Chinchero Mateo Pumacahua, and the green amaru would represent the cacique of Tinta José Gabriel Condorcanqui, Túpac Amaru II.


THE COUNTRY HOUSE OF MATEO PUMACAHUA
The Urquillos hacienda is located in front of Huayocari. It belonged to the curaca of Chinchero, Mateo Pumacahua, the most powerful Peruvian Indian chief during the XVIII century. He was born in this town in 1748, in the bosom of a noble indigenous family.

Even though he was initially identified with the Spanish regime, towards 1780 he was captain of the Society of Noble Indians of the Region. In 1814, he participated actively in favor of the indigenous cause during the rebellion led by the Angulo brothers. The unfruitful revolution ended up with the execution of its leaders. Pumacahua was judged and decapitated in Sicuani, in 1815, and his mortal remains were cut into joints and exhibited in Arequipa, Cusco and other regions. Pumacahua amassed one of the greatest fortunes of the Andean south, but his descendants lost everything when the cacique decided to rebel against the royal power.

The fair
The colorful handicrafts fair of Chinchero is carried out every Sunday in the Main Square, in front of the colonial church. The peddlers from Chinchero, and also from neighboring towns, arrive early in the morning to offer their handicrafts.

Smaller fairs are carried out on Tuesdays and Thursdays. In said fairs people commercialize sheep, llama and alpaca-wool garments as well as handicrafts and all kinds of autochthonous musical instruments. This market takes place in front of a strong Incan wall with twelve large trapezoidal niches. The market, which is carried out from time immemorial, takes place at the end of the village and is one of the few in where people practices the primitive purchase-sale system called "trueque". This system consists in exchanging the products of the area for other products, utensils and articles brought from adjacent regions.

Agricultural products are mainly commercialized in this market. Inhabitants from neighboring communities go there early in the morning. The peddlers from Chinchero usually offer potatoes, potato starch and white chicha, but they also offer roast pork and even loaf sugar. Peddlers of coca leaves, coffee and lemons arrive from Urubamba. You can find coca, bananas, coffee, stewed corn, oranges and asnapa from Maras. The people that arrive from Yucay bring medlars, corn, coca leaves, cabbage and green or bell peppers. The merchants that arrive from Ayarmarca bring onions, tarhui, potatoes and ocas. Green or bell peppers and lemons come from Huayllabamba.

Most of the buyers and sellers are women. Besides, most of the time producers themselves commercialize their products, even though there are always intermediaries from different regions such as Cusco, Maras, Urubamba and Yucay.


The Piray lagoon
It is located at the kilometer 27. This lagoon has supplied the city of Cusco with water since the Tahuantinsuyo time. The Incas took its waters to the imperial city through underground aqueducts.


Carved stones
In the outskirts of the town it is possible to see large sculpted rocks. The most interesting one is made of limestone, cut in gradients and with a projection, like the pedestal of a statue with the figure of an animal.



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