Hotel Belmond Palacio Nazarenas, Cusco – Su Historia

El corazón del Cuzco Incaico yacía bajo la desafiante montaña de Sacsayhuamán, sobre una elevación entre dos pequeños ríos. Ahí, cerca de la plaza principal de los Incas, hoy la Plaza de Armas, se erigía un distrito llamado Pumacurco – la columna del Puma.

Según  cuenta   la  tradición,   el  Cuzco   fue  diseñado   por  el   Inca Pachacútec, el gran transformador del Imperio Incaico, en forma de un gigantesco gato de montaña – símbolo de poder y fuerza en el mundo de los humanos– y por el centro de esta “columna del Puma”, corría una elevación prolongada, conocida como Amaru Qata; la Cuesta de la Serpiente

Aquí se conformaba el eje ceremonial que unía el templo y el enclave imperial de Sacsayhuamán con el Qoricancha, el templo principal de los Incas, media milla montaña abajo. Según el cronista mestizo del siglo XVI conocido como

El Inca, Garcilaso de la Vega, en algún lugar del Amaru Qata se erguía el hogar familiar del último gran emperador, Huayna Cápac, y aquí, también, estaban el Yachayhuasi, colegio donde se educaba la nobleza Inca, y el Huarakos, la academia militar de los Incas.

Hoy en día,  el antiguo  Amaru Qata  es interrumpido   por  una pequeña  e  íntima  plazoleta  colonial  española,   conocida como Nazarenas. El Palacio Nazarenas, que ocupa la esquina Nor-Oriental de esta plaza, fue construido sobre una de esas edificaciones Incas, y podría  haber  cubierto  parte de  ambas.

La fachada  del  edificio español consta de elementos que dan testimonio de sus afiliaciones ancestrales con la Cuesta de la Serpiente. El voluminoso escudo de armas tallado en piedra, sobre la entrada principal,   muestra  dos  bestias  míticas con colas de serpiente, mientras que las numerosas piedras sobre las paredes exhiben pequeñas  serpientes en alto relieve.  Esas piedras  fueron tomadas de antiguas construcciones Incas y reutilizadas para la construcción Español, a en un  estilo colonial  temprano conocido como “transicional”, el cual se vio fuertemente influenciado por la estética del trabajo en piedra de los Incas, así como sus técnicas de construcción.

Luego de la conquista del Cuzco por los españoles, éste fue dividido en parcelas y repartido entre los conquistadores originales, y éstas construcciones Incas cayeron en manos de uno de los más pintorescos de ellos; Mancio Sierra de Leguízamo. Este famoso fanfarrón se ufanaba de haber estado presente durante la captura de Atahualpa (y no lo estuvo), de haber liderado el asalto a Sacsayhuamán durante la rebelión de los Incas (no hubo testigos que lo corroboren), y lo que lo hizo aún más famoso; de haber recibido el más precioso de los íconos de los Incas, el Disco del Sol de Oro del Qoricancha (lo cual es altamente improbable).  Mancio decía haber perdido esta  pieza esa misma  noche  jugando  a  los dados,  dando  lugar al  dicho popular español:  “perder el  sol antes  de que salga.”  Murió en 1589,  pero renunció a la propiedad de Pumacurco muchos años antes.

A mediados del siglo XVI, Cuzco vivía en medio de una gran turbulencia debido a las peleas entre los conquistadores por el botín de la Conquista; muchos llegaron a desafiar a la Corona Española. En ese contexto, la propiedad cambió de dueño varias veces, pero entre los más recordados está Doña María Calderón. En 1546, Doña María resultó implicada en una oscura intriga que le costó la propiedad de la misma –y su vida– a manos de Francisco de Carvajal, un sanguinario conquistador apodado “el Demonio de los Andes”. El demonio envió esclavos africanos para que  ahogasen a esta mujer (¡quien era nada menos que su madrina!) en su propia casa, y luego hizo colgar su cuerpo  de  la  ventana  de  la  esquina  que  hasta  hoy mira  a la Plazoleta.

© Peter FROST

Mas historia sobre el Hotel Belmond Palacio del Inca, Cusco.

It Happened on 07 January

Year 1821 Tumbes Independence Day

Tumbes has its origins back in pre-Inca times when it was inhabited by a cultural group of natives called Tumpis.

At its peak, its population is estimated to have reached 178,000.

After 1400,  Inca Pachacuti  ruled over  Tumbes and  the territory became an important political stronghold during the Inca Empire. Later Inca emperor Huayna Capac expanded Tumbes by ordering the construction of roads, houses and palaces.

In Tumbes you can find
  • The  Amotape  Hills  National  Park :  Parque Nacional Cerros de Amotape. covers 91,300 hectares of the Amotapes Mountain Range. It is part of Noroeste Biosphere Reserve’s core zone.
    The Noroeste Biosphere is 231,402 hectares and is made up of Cerros de Amotape National Park, El Angola Game Preserve, and Tumbes Reserved Zone. Supreme Decree Number 0800-75-AG created the park on July 22, 1975.
  •  The  Tumbes  Mangrove  National  Sanctuary is a national park located in the Tumbes Region of #Peru.  It contains many species of flora  and fauna. It is increasingly  popular  for  tourism   because the  beach  resort of Máncora three hours to the south is booming. The  greater part of  the  wetlands  comprise  creeks  (1,800  ha)  and  streams while the remainder is mangroves (1,172ha). The  inclusion   of  Manglares  de Tumbes  in  the  Ramsar List  is a very important  step  forward  in  the conservation of  mangroves, not  only  because  it  is at  the southernmost  limit of  this type of wetland on the  Pacific coast of South America,  but also because of the  ever-increasing  rate of mangrove  destruction for  shrimp and fish farming.

Year 1966 Gran Pajatén was discoverd. It is an archaeological site located in the Andean cloud forests of #Peru,  on the border  of the La Libertad region  and the  San Martín  region,  between  the  Marañon  and Huallaga rivers.

The  archaeological  site lies  in the  Rio Abiseo  National Park,  which was established in 1983. The park was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Natural Site in 1990, and Cultural Site in 1992.

Gran Pajatén sits on a hilltop, and consists of a series of at least 26 circular stone structures and numerous terraces and stairways. The ruins occupy an area of about 20,000 m². The principal buildings are decorated with slate mosaics displaying human, bird and geometric motifs.

Analysis of ceramic samples and radiocarbon dates show that the area was occupied as early as 200 BCE, but the visible building ruins on the present site were constructed during Inca times.

Based  primarily  on  architectural  evidence,  the  settlement is attributed to the Chachapoyas culture.

In  2004 GRBTV Entertainment  did a documentary on a part of Alejandro Guerrero  documentary abour Rio Abiseo and it was called “Expeditions to the Edge” and InkaNatura Travel helped them with logistics while filming this episode.

 

The Reason I Became a #Peru Travel Advisor

Where Do I Begin?

#Peru is a country blessed with so many wonders and one of the is  : archaeological sites that yet are to be studied and are also natural habitats for more that 1800 species of birds which means 1/5 of the World´s birds species …. And more if you consider that I am just talking about birds as an example.

Paulo Coelho saysIf you think adventure is dangerous, try routine; it is lethal.And I can say a good way to avoid routine is to travel to #Peru.

We are a destination for persons with a variety of interests :

1-    Culture
2-    Nature
3-    Archaeology
4-    History
5-    Bird watching
6-    Adventure
7-    …….

And I could keep going on……. Think about your main interest and I bet I can find a place for you to visit in #Peru.

I recall, while still being at high school one of my first speeches was about a city in #Peru (it had to be a place besides the classical places we already know – so forget #Cusco, #Machu-Picchu, #Puno, #Ica, #Arequipa , #Lima, etc).

I was so lucky to have a little more knowledge in #Peru than my school friends as my father used to be a civil engineer and  I helped him translating and typing the reports he had to hand out after he finished  his work in different areas of the country.

I remember as it was yesterday. I spoke about #Tingo Maria and the Sleeping Beauty a mountain that indeed has the shape of a woman sleeping…. And I had the picture of it so WOW I got a good grade.

Time passed by and I began to type more reports for my father and spend time with my grandfathet, who has retired from work and had time to spend with us.  He was so careful with details when telling me the stories about his adventures while working as sales agent for a flour products factory that I could easily picture him in each place he described to me. He traveled almost all over the country and then I began to know more about #Peru, falling in love with my country.

When I was only 15 years, and I was still in high school I began to read more about #Peru and discovered the amazing places that tourist never go because the lack of information we provide to our Embassies abroad and I decided I was going to make travelers come to #Peru and visit non usual places besides the classic ones.

Now with over 30 years working in tourism I am happy that finally government has heard the Call to Action to study and promote more destinations #Peru has to offer.

In these 30 years of work I have had the pleasure to meet awesome clients and work with filming crews.

Between the filming crews I had the pleasure to meet is Celine Cousteau, who was in the process of re-making Jacques Cousteau expedition Return to the Amazon. When I first met her, “my brains were somewhere else” and did not realize who she was. I thought it was just another filming crew who wanted to work with us. Only when she began to explain their project and played the trailer of the documentary I realized who I was talking to. You should have seen my face as I love sea, It also brought to my present joyfully memories of the times I watched the program in “black and white TV” along with my parents. Also, I met her father Jean-Michel Cousteau a great person. It has been so far, the most exciting part of working with filming crews.

Jawaharal Nehru said “We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open. “  I can say that you also need to open your heat so that you can feel  the beauty in each step you make. The most enjoyable part of travelling is to be part of the change while visiting a new place and learning about their culture. Everyone has a special effect in the persons that surrounds and they have also the same effect in you.

For the past 8 years a friend who is a Peruvian archaeologist and lives in Boston brings students to make a difference. Year by year they travel to remote areas in #Chachapoyas, Amazonas region to do social work. So far they have built a school, a library, an even medical assistance place for the communities that live too far from what we call “civilization”.

I am still amazed how some children can make a difference just by bringing the pencils they found in the floor of their school during a whole year…. and then the next year collecting all the “loose change” at their homes.

The other side of the coin, is that in our rush to built civilization within natural habitats for endangered species we are destroying nature.

In the process to stop deforestation Peru Verde works hard with the communities in doing their share to stop it. They do some habitat protection, sustainable development and wildlife monitoring. The children of the surrounding communities learn to protect and make sustainable use of the area they live in.

As part of their work,  Peru Verde staff practices ecotourism in the surrounding areas of the lodges in Madre de Dios Jungle : #Manu and #Tambopata  Areas.

Now, the communities that live in the surrounding areas have learned to protect animals and trees. No tress are cut and hunting is not allowed in the areas protected by Peru Verde.  And for the past 14 years I am working at the Travel Agency that brings the tourists to these areas among many other areas in the country.

© Carmen Maria GUEVARA PROTZEL

Photos by Roberto Carlos CASTRO