Travel

Ccorcca, A Hidden Wonder in the Province of Cuzco

A Day of Work in Ccorca (Walter Coraza Morveli)

Some 45 minutes to the north west of the City of Cuzco you find the district of Ccorcca, a beautiful valley with charming and picturesque haciendas surrounded by green mountains, and fascinating scenes such as the Tecsecocha waterfall and rock art. Its people are warm and friendly.

It is protected by its mountain Lord, Apu Mama Simona, one of the tallest mountains in the region of Cuzco. From it you can see forever, it seems, the valleys of Cuzco, Chinchero, and so on. This Apu is very important in the ancestral cults and rituals. It has the form of a portrait, the profile of a traditional woman.

A Morning Day in Qiswarcancha Town (Walter Coraza Morveli)
A Morning Day in Qiswarcancha Town (Walter Coraza Morveli)

Ccorcca is considered by the municipality as an archeological, ecological and food reserve. As a result, these last years all of its population under the direction of its municipal government is strengthening their traditions and customs. At the same time they are attempting to develop and promote tourism to Ccorcca as a new tourist route within Cuzco.

Its principal attractions are its rock art in the Farallones de Tecsecocha. On weekends and on feast day cultural fairs are carried out where all that the people produce is exhibited. These include oca, tarwi, maize, and more as well as their animals.

Growing Ecological Mushrooms (Walter Coraza Morveli)
Growing Ecological Mushrooms (Walter Coraza Morveli)

At the current time, the people of Ccorcca are developing various projects. One is a pilot project to grow ecological mushrooms that is giving much to talk about in Cuzco these days.

That week a group of students from the tourism program in the San Antonio Abad University and I went to Ccorcca on towards Apu Mama Simona and nearby haciendas.

Apu Mama Simona (Walter Coraza Morveli)
Apu Mama Simona (Walter Coraza Morveli)

At 9 in the morning we took off in a public bus towards Qiswarcancha were we began our trek. There we saw some small adobe homes with roofing tiles where natural mushrooms are grown. They are called Callampa Wasi, which in Quechua means the house of mushrooms.

We went on our way and one of the things that surprised us were the natural signs of the path that were carved into stones. These were impressive details.

An Offering for the Apu (Walter Coraza Morveli)
An Offering for the Apu (Walter Coraza Morveli)

Along the way we met people who were working their fields. They were very kind and invited us to see how they prepared their fields to plant potatoes. I enjoyed speaking with them. They were so kind that they shared their chicha with us and told us that they continue to work in ayni, an ancestral tradition that lets them work together collectively in harmony for the whole community. They invited us to come back another time to get to know their community better.

We continued towards the top of Apu Mama Simona.The trek lasted about two hours. We went through fields of tarwi and enjoyed the natural beauty and a breeze that gave us a welcome to this Apu who emanates a special energy.

A Field of Tarwi (Walter Coraza Morveli)
A Field of Tarwi (Walter Coraza Morveli)

The mountaintop was pure magic. There was an unequaled view of the Andean Range. To the south we could see the amazing Apu Ausangate and at its feet we seemed to see the City of Cuzco. To the north were Apu Sallkantay and the valley of Chinchero, impressive and without equal.

We made a small offering of coca leaves in order to continue. We then went down to Challwaschay, a small and picturesque hacienda with adobe homes whose facades are painted with images of local birds and flowers.

Ccorcca was filled with natural beauty for all who wish to learn about our living culture and the traditions of our people. Cuzco and its provinces have a lot for you to explore.

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