The traditional Cusqueña Christmas ends with the Feast of the Bajada de Reyes, a customary event also known as the descent of the three wise men, is a precise mixture of Christian and native religions, as part of the long process of changes and assimilation in Andean society, for which all the festivities are located within the agricultural cycle. Therefore, those of pre-Hispanic origin have been adapted to Christian celebrations, as the Andean people are deeply devoted to Christ, without this preventing them from entrusting themselves to the apus and making offerings to the Pachamama.
In this context, January is the month of the rains, an essential element in the agricultural cycle, without which the sown lands would not bear fruit. Therefore, since time immemorial, the people thank with joy and festive atmosphere that the water of the drop the fields. January is also the month in which the Infant Jesus descends from the heights. Month in which exquisite potages are offered so that the earth is generous to bear fruit, in the same way as the Three Wise Men bring the presents to the Infant Jesus.
LOWERING OF KINGS IN OLLANTAYTAMBO
The way Ollantaytambo celebrates the Bajada de Reyes is worthy of honorable mention and obligatory visit. It has a lot of the Paucartambo patron feast, but, lacking as much publicity as this one, it is more intimate, one could even say familiar.
It is a folklore and folklore party in which not only the inhabitants of the town participate. On the eve, the inhabitants of the Ollantaytambo Puna, settlers of the Patacancha Valley, in the communities of Huilloq and Patacancha, commonly known as Huairuros, descend in procession. Those who not only dye the holiday with the red of their costumes but bring with them their Baby Jesus of Marcacocha, accompanied by the dancers of huallata, one of the most typical and ancestral dances, which recreates the mating of the geese that dwell in the lagoons of the Andean heights.
Costumbrista event that displays a large number of artists in a live performance accompanied by the presentation of choirs …
The Niño Jesús de Marcacocha, together with the inhabitants of the heights and the dancers of Huallata, are received in the chapel of the Niño Samachina by the dancers of Huayllascha (who have a dress equal to the inhabitants of the Punas), and thus begins the union between neighboring towns.
LOWERING OF KINGS IN OLLANTAYTAMBO
Day 6 is the encounter of the Child Jesus of Marcacocha with the other two children who are in the church of the town of Ollantaytambo. This encounter is enlivened by other traditional dances, such as blacksmiths, churches, majeños, yellow fever, and stinky wata qallary. The dances or troupes, with their respective executions and feasts, so inherent in them, transform Ollantaytambo into a perpetual feast where huairuros, peasants, Ollantinos, and tourists are mixed. From these meetings, when the effigies of the two children of the town receive the Infant Jesus of Marcacocha, and the groups flutter around them, the processions begin.
In the afternoon of day 6 is the traditional bullfight in the coso built in the San Isidro neighborhood. The red ponchos supplement the Spanish layers, and the bullfighting hills are replaced by the peasant mounts of clear Spanish remembrance. But if a bullfighter tries to nail some flags on the back of the beast, the owner of the bull appears and removes it from the ring, either by hook or by crook.
Although the party is announced on the eve, that is on January 5, when the inhabitants of Patacancha begin their descent with the Child Jesus of the heights, the central day is 6, the party with their respective processions continues in Ollantaytambo until on January 8. The day when the farewell and ‘cacharpari’ are carried out at the doors of the chapel of the Niño Samachina. Therefore, the party lasts four days, were the dances and processions, the typical dishes, and the volley are enjoyed until satiating locals and foreigners. So if you have more time, enjoy it.