Exploring Chinchero is part of every Sacred Valley adventure, or it should be. Chinchero is a beautiful place with so much to offer.
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Exploring Chinchero: A Traveler’s Dream

Exploring Chinchero is part of every Sacred Valley adventure, or it should be. Chinchero is a beautiful place with so much to offer. From inca history to colonial art, to living history. It should be mandatory to stop there.

Additionally Chinchero offers stunning landscapes. Its markets may also interest you. It’s the perfect place to learn about andean culture. And the modern amenities of the town make explorations even more convenient.

Chinchero is a humble place. But in its simplicity it is truly charming. It is a destination with multiple appeals. 

This guide will take you to some of the most important parts of this town. In your next Sacred Valley visit, make sure to stop for some exploration.

Exploring Chinchero

Discovering Chinchero: The Basics You Should Know

Exploring Chinchero may be the missing piece in your Sacred Valley experience. This not so small town is in Peru’s Sacred Valley. It lies at 3,762 meters above sea level  (12,343 ft).

Chinchero is the “Birthplace of the Rainbow”, or at least the tradition says it.  The town’s vibrant atmosphere fits the name perfectly. This town is active and in constant movement.

In the 15th century, the Inca emperor Túpac Yupanqui chose Chinchero for his royal estate. Probably it was a combination of the landscape and the accessibility from Cusco.

Ancient inca ruins appear along the town. You can imagine how it was in inca empire times. And the best part, you can explore most of these archaeological sites.

Exploring Chinchero: What Makes It Unique

The town of Chinchero has a unique charm. It combines ancient history with living traditions. The town on its main street also has some modern appeal. It is a perfect first stop in any Cusco Region Exploration.  

Visitors can see agricultural terraces from the Inca era. And the zone never stops being an important agricultural hub. To this day crop fields surround the town. This creates a really picturesque landscape.

Chinchero being an agricultural zone, needs markets to exchange products. However the market doesn’t only serve the food producers. The market is famous for its artisanal side. Maybe even comparable with the Pisac market.

The colorful Chinchero market is famous for its vibrant textiles. You can find handwoven items. All of them are made with traditional techniques. You can even have the chance to encounter the weaver herself.

The Church of Chinchero: History and Inspirations

The Church of Chinchero stands as one of the main monuments of the town. If you are exploring Chinchero, do not miss it. It not only is a sign of major cultural shifts in history, but it is absolutely beautiful inside.

In the early 17th century, Spanish conquerors constructed the church. They built the temple on top of an inca Sacred Place. This was common practice during the Spanish invasion.

Exploring Chinchero

The objective was to replace sacred inca places with christian sacred places. So many Colonial churches lay on top of inca sites. With time this became a symbol of Peruvian culture itself. Occidental construction on top on andean principles.

Chinchero is an example of that. They chose this site because of its spiritual significance. The church blends Inca and Spanish architectural styles.

The church sits at a high altitude in the town of Chinchero. It is in an open space so the disposition is pretty welcoming despite the altitude. Its outside is quite simple. White walls with rock inca walls in the base.

It may even resemble the streets of Cusco. But the demon is in the details. The multilevel roofs and the simplicity reveal substantial differences to make the church iconic. 

Chinchero’s Church is on a hill top. It offers breathtaking views of Peru’s Sacred Valley. In some seasons you will have this view along the snow capped mountains around.

The interior of the church is just stunning, complementing the view previously mentioned. Visitors will find beautiful murals and paintings. Many of the corners have baroque ornamentations. The details are made with gold leaf. These artworks have a mix of Inca and Catholic imagery.

The church is rich in symbolism. From hidden andean imagery on catholic motives. It reflects the cultural fusion between the andean culture and the occidental world. A phenomenon that is well extended along Peru and the general andean region.

Exploring Chinchero: Discover the Church’s Beauty

While Exploring Chinchero you should visit this extraordinary church. The church’s ceiling is worthy of mention. It features intricate wooden carvings and gold leaf work.

The walls are adorned with frescoes. These frescoes depict religious scenes but adapted to the local conceptions. They are part of the Cusco’s school of art movement. Of course with its own artistic inclinations. Since there are subtle differences with what you can find in Cusco.

One of the most impressive focal points is the altar. The altar is mainly made of wood. The decorations are carved and covered in gold leaf. It features space for paintings and figures in a symmetrical disposition.

A Cultural Treasure

The Church of Chinchero is more than just a building. It is a living place of religious practices. At the same time it is a symbol of the rich culture in the Sacred Valley. And of course, it is a showcase of the talented indigenous artists and their capabilities.

Exploring Chinchero is incomplete without visiting this church. This is one of the main destinations in town. One just can’t ignore the prevalence of the artistry in this rural church. A first view can be deceiving, most of the remarkable parts laye inside. 

textile center Chinchero

Must-Visit Places of Interest in Chinchero

Exploring Chinchero offers a rich experience in general. But we would like to focus on culture and history. Chinchero is at its best in this categories.

Textile Centers: A Weaving Tradition

Chinchero is famous for its delicate textile works. Around town you can find multiple workshops about the topic. These are managed in the center managed by associations of traditional weavers.

Many of them are women that are trying to keep the practice alive. The weavers use traditional techniques. They also maintain traditional patterns. There is space for innovations, but the focus is in tradition.

When you visit the textile centers you will witness a weaving demonstration. You will also have the opportunity to acquire handmade textiles. You will be contributing to the local economy while getting something 100% authentic.

The Inca Ruins of Chinchero

The Chinchero ruins are part of many tours. These ruins are part of an important archaeological site. Chinchero used to be a tambo. A place to Replenish resources and where travelers rested. 

These places were important to ensure the sustainability of the Inca path network. The Inca empire relied on these paths to have exchange of products and communication. Chinchero served not only as another city, it had a purpose.

The establishment of the palace of Inca Túpac Yupanqui was a really important event. The archeological site that remains show this importance. An  ancient palace that showcases impressive stonework.

The site also includes agricultural terraces. However the agricultural terraces are part of the whole Sacred valley of the Incas. These were perfect to maximize available crop area. 

In Chinchero Some of the ancient terraces are still in use today. They demonstrate the Inca’s advanced agricultural techniques.

Exploring Chinchero: The Market and Beyond

If you are exploring Chinchero, you have to visit the market. It is almost an unscripted rule. In every town or city you visit, you should visit the local market.  

In the case of Chinchero, the market is a highlight. You will not only have the vibes of the small town market with fresh products and animals being sold. You will have an array of traditional colorful textiles.

Exploring Chinchero: Scenic Views and High Altitude

Chinchero’s location in the Sacred Valley is what makes it special. It is a little higher than other towns. It is more prone to snow at certain times of year. So it is the perfect place to encounter snow capped mountains.

Chinchero is in a valley surrounded by fields and greenery. The ambiance is peaceful and perfect to unwind. Hinchero is an excellent destination to try the peace of the Sacred Valley.

Exploring Chinchero

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