Late evening arrival to Lima. Greeting and welcome by our personnel. Transfer to local hotel.
As ancient Andeans to modern day Andeans have done - so will the students. Day two begins with a pilgrimage to the sacred seaside temple of Pachacamac. For well over two thousand years the site of pachacamac has remained the Mecca of the Andean world. Home to one of the most revered oracles, Pachacamac was the destination for those of faith and those in need. Fasting for months and bringing the finest goods they had to offer, those lucky enough to be granted access to the oracle experienced either the favor or displeasure of their creator deity. Also located at the sacred site is the Inca Temple of the Mamacunas or "women who serve as mothers".
Many other legends and icons of this magical site are to be revealed to the students by an expert local guide.
Arrive at the airport of Trujillo in the afternoon. Transfer by private bus to dinner at the restaurant Mochica of Trujillo. Transfer to Magdalena de Cao. The village of Magdalena de Cao is situated close to the site of Huaca del Brujo. Founded over three hundred years ago, the village retains some of its colonial elements such as the catholic church, however the people of the village have also maintained the traditional culture. Located near the charming town square is the Center of Culture where traditional dance and language is taught. Don't be surprised if the entire village comes to greet you upon your arrival! Accommodations are to be provided by the local hostel.
After breakfast students will be accompanied by the guide and transported to the archaeological complex of Huaca del Brujo.
Recently featured in the June 2006 issue of the National Geographic, the el Brujo complex has gained worldwide attention due to the discovery of Senora de Cao. She has been proclaimed the most important discovery since the discovery of the Lord of Sipan - the Americas equivalent to Egypt's King Tut. Thought to be the first female ruler found in the north coast, the Moche mummy is well-preserved (including her skin on which one can still see her tattoos). Senora de Cao was buried with numerous high status objects, including two large scepters, a series of crowns, a large gold necklace, fine ceramic artifacts, and human sacrificial victims.
The site itself, archaeologically speaking, is one of the most important
in the north coast. It features architectural structures that date from the pre-ceramic era until to colonial times and into present day with the quaint fishing village of Santiago de Cao. The village represents an uninterrupted maritime tradition that spans the age of the site. In total the Brujo complex is thought to date from approximately 3000 B.C.
On this ancient site, the students are treated to a tour given personally by the director of the el Brujo project, Dr. Regulo Franco. The major features of the site are Huaca Pieta, Huaca Cortada (Huaca del Brujo), Cao Veija (site of the Senora de Cao mummy) and the magical Moche ceremonial well. At approximately 3:00pm the students are transported back and are treated to lunch at the hostel. After which there is an afternoon of free time in which the students may wish to explore the charming town of Magdalena de Cao.
After breakfast students will be accompanied by the guide and transported to the archaeological complex of Huaca del Brujo. Now intimately acquainted with the site, the students are treated to lectures and instruction by the lead archaeologists of the project. Some of the topics that will be covered are preservation, environmental reconstruction, and of course, excavation. The day is divided into three segments including a midmorning break with snack on the site and a return to the hostel for lunch and for dinner.
After breakfast students will be accompanied by the guide and transported to the archaeological complex of Huaca del Brujo. After touring and education the students are now ready to get their hands dirty with some hands-on excavation supervised by the resident archaeologists of el Brujo. The students will return to the hostel for both lunch and dinner.
The magic of day four continues into the night with a once in a lifetime experience: a Andean ritual conducted by one of the most respected and recognized shamans, Sr. Arturo Cervantes. Well into the hours of the morning, the shaman will explain the connection between Andean cosmology and the universe - truly magical.
After breakfast, local transportation will take the students from Magdalena to Trujillo. The first part of the day is to be spent in the impressive ruins of the ancient Chimu capitol of Chan-Chan. Covering an area of over seven miles, Chan-Chan's massive pre-Hispanic mud-brick settlement features a two mile urban core dominated by the palaces and tombs of the ancient Chimu kings.
Lunch will served at the beautiful seaside restaurant of Big Ben in the charming town of Huanchaco. The afternoon will be spent in the Museum of Cassinelli. Concentrating on pre-Columbian ceramics, the museum is a testimony to the ancient artisans of Andes. Dinner is to be provided in the city of Trujillo.
From the hotel the first site to be visited will be Huaca de la Luna located in the Moche Valley. Second in size only to the pyramid of the sun, Huaca de la luna offers a glimpse of the glory that once belonged to the ancient Moche. Fantastic murals, and tombs and plazas for the elite of the Moche await those who explore this pyramid. Still awaiting archaeological excavation is Huaca del Sol or Temple of the Sun.
Thought to be the former capitol of the Moche State, Huaca del Sol boasts a size of one thousand two hundred fifty feet in length and towers one hundred thirty-five feet above the surrounding plain. A size which makes it the tallest adobe structure of the Americas. After visiting the ancient capitol, the students will lunch in a local restaurant. The afternoon will leave the students free to explore the historic city of Trujillo.
Located in Lambayeque and well worth the three hour trip through the exotic desert landscape is the museum of the Lord of Sipan. Known in Peru as the prestigious Museo Tumbas Reales del Sipan, the museum houses the fantastic treasures found with the Moche ruler.
Dramatic in architecture and design the museum is an oasis for the visual senses. Here the visitor will experience the wealth and the majesty of the Moche. After touring the museum, lunch will be provided by a local restaurant.
In the evening, the students will be transported to the airport to return to Lima. Once in Lima the students are to be transferred to a local hotel to spend the evening.
The archaeological site of El Brujo (the Wizard or Sorcerer) is located north of Trujillo, near Chocope, in the Ascope province.
Reference web site for
Augusto N. Wiese Foundation and IBM:
El Brujo Archaeological Site
National Geographic story