Cultural Highlights

Posted on by Larry

Cultural Highlights

*Participants will have the opportunity to visit up to three of the following cultural highlights in Peru (not including Cuzco and Machu Picchu)

Cuzco the Incan and “Mestizo” Andean city and the former capital of the Incan Empire, is a necessary visit for those who travel to Peru.  This city provides many activities to choose from. The time in Cuzco introduces participants to the history of the Incan and Spanish empire, well being exposed to life in the Peruvian Andes. During one afternoon, participants travel by horse to view the surrounding rural Andean countryside, and visit to caves.

Machu Picchu is a one-day visit to one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.  The day begins with an early morning bus trip to the train station in Ollantytambo.  From there, participants embark on a one to two hour train ride through the Andes to Machu Picchu town (Aguas Calientes).  The train ride offers spectacular views that can be seen through the numerous skylights that line the train.  Upon arrival to Aguas Calientes, participants will take a bus to Machu Picchu to enjoy a 2.5 – 3 hour walking tour of the site with a local tour guide.  Upon completion, participants will have free time to explore (the sun gate, handcraft markets, etc.) before meeting the group for dinner.  That evening the group will reverse the process, returning to the retreat house in Cuzco via train and bus.

Historic Lima Downtown takes students to the heart of the city of Lima.  The visit to Lima includes a 1 hour tour at the Monastery of San Francisco. In addition, participants will have a short time (1 hour) to visit the Plaza de Armas and the surrounding area. Traveling to downtown Lima gives participants a great opportunity to see the Spanish architecture. The visit to the monastery includes a unique visit to the catacombs.

El Parque del Amor is a beautiful park that provides participants with a magnificent view of the coast.  It is an excellent spot for pictures of the city.

Incan Handcraft Market allows the students to barter and purchase Peruvian souvenirs and gifts.  Participants will be given the opportunity to visit the markets while in Cuzco. The handcraft market allows participants the opportunity to practice their Spanish skills, aid in the local economy, as well as collect souvenirs of their experience.

Barranco is a beautiful district of Lima located on the cliffs that line Lima’s coastline overlook and overlook the Pacific Ocean.  Barranco has a bohemian flavour, and provides a fun place to spend an evening interacting and enjoying traditional food and beverages.

Community church service: A large percentage of Peruvians are religious with the greatest religious concentration being Roman Catholic (88%). As a cultural visit, SIA offers participants with the opportunity to attend a Catholic Church service in the community. For participants not interested in attending, SIA will make appropriate arrangements.

Parque de la Reserva – The Magic Water Circuit is an urban complex which brings together the restoration of National Historic Patrimony with the installation of Magic Water Circuit – a collection of interactive fountains where water, music, light, images and laser effects are combined in perfect union to present a unique show.

Testimonies and Presentations

The program includes visits from members of the local community where we are involved. During these visits students are given the opportunity to interact with the individuals and hear the personal testimonies of these community members. The experience provides a vivid moment of sharing and solidarity.

Solidarity in Action invites local leaders from the Chorrillos area to lead presentations on specific topics which help increase the overall understanding of the work of the participants. Presentations may include career specific discussions, conversations about poverty and volunteer work, etc.

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