Inti Raymi Festival 2025
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Inti Raymi Festival 2025

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Inti Raymi Festival 2025

The Inti Raymi or Sun Feast was the most important festivity on the Inca’s times. It was celebrated due to the winter solstice - new solar year - for a town whose main object of worship was the God Inti (The sun) in the Huacaypata Square in Cusco.


The religious, ceremonial, social and political importance was such that the feast was extended in all the Tahuantinsuyo. After the Spaniard conquest, the festivity was suspended by the Catholic Church and the society that celebrated the sun feast was dismembered. The Inti Raymi was forgotten until the mid-twentieth century when, as an expression of a great movement of revaluation of native culture in Peru had returned to the scene.


In 1944 a group of intellectuals and artists from Cusco (heads by Humberto Vidal U.) decided to recover the Inti Raymi form history and present it as a theatrical type show, destined for the whole population of Cusco. Since then, with very few exceptions, it has been represented every year, prospering and evolving for the historical research.

Inti Raymi 2025
In the Incas times the Inti Raymi was a religious ceremony and now it is a theatrical representation. However, this expression generates a sense of identity in the village which evokes values and memories that are still relevant today, it also brings the memory of a time that still lives in the heart of the town of Cusco. The show is expressed in its original language, quechua, with its corresponding translation into Spanish to facilitate a better understanding.


History of this Fiesta del Sol

The roots of Inti Raymi trace back to the year 1412 AD when Pachacuti, the ninth Sapa Inca (emperor), decreed the annual observance of the festival during the winter solstice. This tradition was established to pay homage to their deity Inti and commemorate the commencement of the Inca New Year.


Known as the Fiesta del Sol or the "Sun Party," this festivity held a paramount position in the Inca calendar, symbolizing the mythical genesis of the Inca people. Furthermore, the celebration signified the profound connection between the Sapa Inca and his subjects. During the event, the emperor would make a ceremonial entrance into the expansive square of Saqsayhuaman in Cusco, treading on flower petals while accompanied by the Pichaq, a group of priests tasked with dispelling any malevolent spirits in the vicinity.


In addition to its symbolic significance, the Inti Raymi festival also served as a "new fire" ceremony. At a certain juncture, the Sapa Inca would decree the extinguishing of all fires in Cusco, only to inaugurate a new fire marking the advent of the New Year. This sacred flame would then kindle the numerous other fires throughout the city, symbolizing the renewal and continuity of life.


The ceremony Inti Raymi

On June 24 of each year, the solemn evocation of the splendid Inca rite ceremony is made in Sacsayhuaman, with a renovated and prepared by distinguished specialists in the field script.


On the night before all of the fires of the empire (The Tahuantinsuyo) were turned off and the shiniest ones of the empire were concentrated in the Huacaypata square (Main square nowadays).

Inti Raymi 2025

The crowd awaited for the appearance of the God Inti (sun) in the shadows with great respect. Generals, princes and all the nobility waited in deep silence, many of them dressed as wild beasts and other animals from the Andean mythology.


When the sun finally appeared they expressed its recognition that they had for him as a unique and universal God that with its light and its virtue created and sustained all of the thing of the Earth, thanking him for the harvest they received that year.


The Inca with help of the priest “induced” the God Inti (Sun) just when he reached its maximum point of distance and its approach to Cusco began, to be turned with the favor of its beams, to fertilize the ground and to try to well-being of the children of the Tahuantinsuyo Empire.


The sacred fire was renewed with a concave gold bracelet that was put against the solar light, whose reflexes are projected on a piece of cotton which caught fire in short time. The sacred fire was taken to the Qoricancha where it would be retained by the Acllas. A sacrifice of a llama was made during the ceremony to predict the coming year, then a military march was held and after that all of the people leave to then explode in unbridled excitement that lasted for several days.


Useful Inti Raymi Vocabulary

For an immersive experience of the Inti Raymi Festival, consider planning a trip to Peru in June to witness the event firsthand. This allows you the opportunity to actively participate in the festivities, gaining insights into the rituals of Inti Raymi, observing the traditional attire worn during the celebration, understanding the distinctive features of the festival, and, as an added bonus, indulging in the delectable offerings of Peruvian cuisine!


To enhance your preparedness for your upcoming journey to Cusco, Peru, let's familiarize ourselves with some essential Inti Raymi vocabulary. Keep in mind that while certain terms discussed herein are in Spanish, others originate from the ancient Quechua language, spoken during the era of the Inca Empire.


Let’s start with important Spanish vocabulary about the festival first.

  • El solsticio de invierno – winter solstice
  • La plaza de armas – main square
  • El sitio arqueológico – archaeological site
  • Las ruinas arqueológicas – archaeological ruins
  • La explanada – esplanade
  • El Templo del Sol – Temple of the Sun
  • El gobierno – government
  • Peruano – Peruvian
  • El Patrimonio Cultural – Cultural Heritage

Best Destination to Add for Inti Raymi 2025

If you want to see and be part of the Incas festival in Peru. We recommend you to prepare your vacations to Peru in advance. You will require a minimum of 3 days and maximum of 6 days to enjoy these Inca celebrations. Add extra activities or destinations for your best experience. You can visit the lost city of the Incas by train, choose the option Machu Picchu tours or hiking through the Inca Trail, Salkantay Trek or other alternative treks. Don´t forget to add the Rainbow Mountain in your holidays, this mountain is one of the most beautiful natural destinations.

Best destinations to add for Inti Raymi 2025
Salkantay Trek Machu offers a quality service for Inca Trail tours, Salkantay Trek tours or Peru trekking holidays for you!. Choose the best trail and tours to Peru or contact with our Tailor Made Trip department

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