Qosqo, pronounced [Q’osqo]), or Cusco (recent official script), is a city in southeastern Peru located on the eastern slope of the Andes Mountains, in the Huatanay river basin, a tributary of the Vilcanota. It is the capital of the Department of Cuzco and in addition, it is declared in the Peruvian constitution as the historical capital of the country. Formerly the capital of the Inca Empire and one of the most important cities of the Viceroyalty of Peru. Declared Patrimony of the Humanity in 1983 by the Unesco, usually is denominated, due to the great amount of monuments that owns, like the “Rome of America”. It has an estimated population of 358,052 according to the Peruvian census of 2007, which places it among the most populated cities of the country.
Geography Cuzco expands through the valley that forms the river Huatanay and by the surrounding hills. Its climate is generally dry and temperate. It has two defined seasons: one dries between April and October, with sunny days, cold nights with frost and average temperature of 13 ° C; and another rainy, from November to March, average temperature 12 ° C. On sunny days the temperature reaches 20 ° C, although the slight mountain wind is usually cold.
Cusco is under the macro-climatic influence of large masses of air from the south-eastern jungle, as well as the Peruvian-Bolivian Altiplano winds which are rather cold and dry, as well as those coming from Patagonia, the south-eastern zone and which generally involve larger-scale climatic events. On the other hand, the local winds that are generated in their valleys and in their plains have the function of distributing heat and humidity throughout the day. The annual average temperature fluctuates between 10.3 ° C and 13 ° C (between 50.54 ° and 52.34 ° Fahrenheit); but these temperatures vary according to the area.
The Cuzco and in general the Peruvian, is a festive people par excellence that has turned the religious celebrations into true popular festivals where ceremonies and cults are as important as: dances, meals, and drinks. For example there are typical foods that are prepared only for certain parties and the same happens with the dances. The most important festival in the Cuzco holiday is Holy Week, with its processions of Holy Monday and Holy Friday. To these parties we have to add two that are made in places a little far from Cusco, the Virgen del Carmen in Paucartambo and Qoylloritti, near the town of Ocongate. Both match in originality and beauty to the festivities of the city.
The celebration of the Inti Raymi on June 24th tradition that comes to our days since the time of the Inca Empire. It has recovered with all its splendor for more than 50 years and with more and more strength and attractiveness. The ancient great Inca city of Cusco is home to the most striking party that brings together a large number of foreign visitors. The Inti Raymi is the homage that the Peruvian man surrenders to the Sun and to all of nature. This is one of the many religious manifestations of Peru. An excellent representation of the Inti Raymi is the one that is realized in the Saqsayhuaman, with the participation of hundreds of people in the ceremony. It is the richest festival of the Inka empire, which is offered to the world.