25 April, 2011

The Land of Bread

The town of Oropesa, just 23 kilometers away from Cusco, is known as the bread capital of the region. It can be reached by traveling aproximately 1 kilometer from the main highway. Its name comes from the Marquesado of Villa Rica de Oropesa, founded by viceroy Francisco de Toledo, and it means “gold value”. Even tough there are no guided visits you can ask any of the local baker families for permission to see its ovens. They will explain since when and how they bake their breads and you will be able to try some of their many varieties: cakes, three points bread, sweet bread, salty bread, the great chuzas…
It is also very interesting to visit its stone church from the seventeenth century, which has an open chapel or balcony from where masses were held for the local population. In the church you may also appreciate its barroque pulpit, murals and two images of Saint Peter and Saint Paul.

Useful tips

  • Location: at kilometer 955, 23 kms from the city of Cusco in the highway to Puno (the South Valley).
  • Open: everyday. Admission is free.
  • Tanta Raymi: the second sunday in october the “feast of the bread” or tanta raymi is celebrated, where you will be able to find more than 50 varieties of bread.
  • Duration of the experience: 2 hours
  • Access: you can reach Oropesa by taxi cab in 30 minutes. The cost of the ride varies between 40 – 70 soles.
  • Tip: this visit can be combined with the Raqchi visit.

Text and Photos by Iñigo Maneiro