Paucartambo, province and folklore capital of Cusco
Paucartambo, is the name of the magical town which is home to the most famous religious parties of Cusco. Every year in July, narrow streets of Paucartambo welcome visitors who show faith and devotion making the journey to visit “Mamacha del Carmen”. In this blog we will learn more about the history of beautiful town, Paucartambo, province and folklore capital of Cusco.
Paucartambo is located in the province with the same name, 110 kilometers from Cusco. This town is very close to Paucartambo river which is also known as Mapacho river. It counts with an area of 6115.11 square kilometers. On the north, it borders with the departments of Madre De Dios and La Convención, on the south, with the province of Calca, on the west with Quispicanchis.
Province of Paucartambo is located at an altitude of 2 906 m.a.s.l/ 9534.121ft
Since the province of Paucartambo is located in the region of Cusco, it has two distinct seasons: dry and rainy.
Dry season: From May to October
The weather during this period is predominantly dry, especially in June, July, and August.
Rainy season: From November to April
During this time Cusco receives a greater amount of rainfall. We recommend wearing a raincoat.
Temperature in the province of Paucartambo varies from 0 °C to 17 °C and rarely it is less than -2 °C or higher than 20 °C.
Best time to visit:
Best season to visit Paucartambo is during the dry season, from May to October, since there is less rain and the roads are safer. During this season days are bright and sunny with a clear blue sky. However, you should bring warm clothes for cold mornings and nights. The best months during this season are June, July and August since there are many festivities like Inti Raymi, Corpus Christi, Sir Qoyllorit´i pilgrimage, Mamacha del Carmen festival, among others.
According to the history, Paucartambo was very important during the Inca and Colonial time. In both periods of time, trading products between the Andes and jungle such as coca, gold, textiles and some others was of huge relevance. Furthermore, it is said that during the Incas time, this place represented the Antisuyu and was considered as the main entrance to ancient Cusco. It was during this period that Paucartambo was inhabited by the Pokes, Wallas and Lares.
During the Colonial period, Incas were defeated in many battles against the Spanish. In 1565, Spanish government established the jurisdiction of Paucartambo. And on June 21, 1825, some years after the Independence of Peru, Paucartambo was declared as a province of Cusco, being among one of the first provinces of the region.
Districts of Paucartambo at the present:
Paucartambo province has 6 districts:
- Cay Cay
What can you see in Paucartambo?:
Agricultural activity: This is an important activity in the area since most locals grow potato, barley, corn, wheat, among other products that contribute to the financial support of the families of Paucartambo. Furthermore, lands are also used for growing timber and rice products. Most products are exported to Cusco for sale.
Stone and Lime Bridge:
In the colonial period, the Spanish government ordered to build a new bridge made of stone and lime over Mapacho river. This was because the old bridge didn’t meet the locals need. The population was growing and they needed a better and strong bridge. It was King Carlos III ordered to build the bridge which was named after him. You can visit the bridge when you come to Cusco. Don’t miss the chance to visit this and more beautiful places of the Andes. Check our website to learn more Inkayni Peru Tours.
Virgen del Rosario:
Patron of the town of Paucartambo. She is located in the same church as Mamacha del Carmen. Virgen del Rosario is venerated on important celebrations, but the locals are more faithful devotees of “Mamacha del Carmen”
Virgen del Carmen:
Also known as “Mamacha del Carmen”. Her main festival takes place from July 15 to 18 every year. This is a very important celebration for people who come from Cusco and Paucartambo.
How to get to Paucartambo:
To get to Paucartambo, you should get to Cusco first. It takes from 2 to 2 hours and a half to get there. There are different options to arrive in Paucartambo.
You can take the bus that take you there. Use this link to learn which bus takes you there Moovit (Moovit is an app to find public transportation and map of the route as well): RTI-01, RTI-06, RTI-09, RTI-10, RTU-04
Second option is to hire the service of a private taxi. The cost of the transfer varies from USD 40 to 60 per person.
As a third option, it is recommendable to visit Paucartambo with a tourist agency, which will arrange everything for you in advance being your only concern to make the most of the experience.
- Come 2 or 3 days before you start any hike in Cusco. This way you can acclimatize to the altitude in Cusco.
- Pack warm clothes like raincoats, beanie, gloves, etc. Mornings can be very cold.
- Wear a raincoat or rain poncho (weather in Cusco is unpredictable)
- Hiking shoes must be worn in advance to avoid hurting your feet.
- Drink water to keep hydrated.
- Take some extra cash with you, preferably local currency.
- Don’t forget to bring your personal documents or passports with you all the time.
- Wear a hat and sunscreen to prevent from sun damage.
- Camera to record your best moments in Paucartambo.
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Lao Tzu