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It may be a fairly serene location these days, but Qenko, which means "zigzag," was once the site of one of the Incas' most intriguing and potentially macabre rituals. Named after the zigzagging channels carved into the surface, Qenko is a large rock thought to have been the site of an annual pre-planting ritual in which priests standing on the top poured chicha, or llama blood, into a ceremonial pipe, allowing it to make its way down the channel. If the blood flowed left, it boded poor fertility for the coming season. If the liquid continued the full length of the pipe, it spelled a bountiful harvest. Today you won't see any blood, but the carved channels still exist and you can climb to the top to see how they zigzag their way down. Other symbolic carvings mix it up on the rock face, too—the eagle-eyed might spot a puma, condor, and a llama.
- Address: Km 4, Hwy. to Pisac, Cusco
- Phone: No phone
- Cost: Boleto Turístico
- Hours: Daily 7–6
- Location: Cusco
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The last leg of an eight month rtw which started in Japan, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Germany and Austria...details about our other legs are at www.greenleycoffeebreak.com.
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This is a continuation of my report on the Argentina forum, Salta.
Below is a cut and paste from my blog, edited with details of costs and names of hotels for people who may be interested.
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