Inca Bridge of Q'swachaka

Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

Inca Bridge of Q'swachaka , ,

Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

The Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka: An ancestral treasure in the Peruvian Andes

In the middle of the majestic landscapes of the Peruvian Andes is an architectural and cultural treasure: the Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka.

This suspension bridge, built with ancient techniques, represents a living connection with the past and the engineering skill of the ancient Inca civilizations.

The Q’eswachaka Bridge is located in the Cusco region, near the city of Canas. Each year, in an exciting event known as the “Fiesta del Q’eswachaka”, the local community comes together to rebuild the bridge using the same techniques and materials that have been passed down from generation to generation for over 500 years.

The bridge is made entirely of ichu (a kind of resistant grass) and is intertwined using a traditional technique called “Q’oya”. Local people work as a team to collect the ichu, spin the ropes and build the bridge, using their inherited knowledge to ensure each step is carried out with precision.

The reconstruction of the Inca Bridge of Q’eswachaka is a laborious and community process. Villagers join forces to weave the ropes, replace the planks, and strengthen the piers of the bridge. This event is a celebration of culture, tradition and community unity, and also a way to keep alive the ancestral legacy of the Incas.

The bridge, suspended over the Apurímac River, is not only a testament to the technical prowess of the Incas, but also a symbol of resistance and perseverance. Despite the challenges and changes over time, the Q’eswachaka Inca Bridge has been rebuilt year after year, preserving its essence and reminding present generations of the importance of its cultural heritage.

Q’swachaka is the last Inca suspension bridge. Speaking a little history, during the Inca era, there was a large network of roads that covered more than 30,000 kilometers of road, among these countries would be:

  • Peru,
  • Colombia,
  • Argentina,
  • Ecuador,
  • Chile,
  • Bolivia
  • cover much of the Andes mountain range.

With this network of roads, various bridges were also executed, made up of stones, wood, floating, vegetable fiber, especially the last mentioned, are currently attracting a lot of attention from travelers; it is there the Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka that is recognized as a Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, since 2013.

Location of the Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

The Inca Bridge of Q’eswachaka is located in the district of Quehue, in the Province of Canas, in the region of Cusco, Peru. It is located on the Apurimac River, at an approximate altitude of 3,700 meters above sea level. This impressive suspension bridge is 29 meters long and 1.20 meters wide. The surprising thing is that this place can be reached in just three and a half hours from the city of Cusco.

Meaning of Q’swachaka

The name “Q’eswachaka” originates from the Quechua language, spoken by the ancient Incas and still present in many communities in the region. In Quechua, “Q’eswa” means “braid” and “Chaka” translates as “bridge.” Therefore, the literal meaning of Q’eswachaka is “Braided Bridge”. This name refers to the traditional braiding technique used to build this one-of-a-kind bridge.

Ritual of elaboration of the Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

The ritual is given in the renovation of the bridge, in which the collection of the Ichu or q’oya straw is made, in which previously the families of the communities are in charge of carrying out approximately 40 meters this process is carried out with days before in which it is hit with a stone, for better handling, then proceed to soak.

It is then that, in the middle of the second week of June, families wear their braids to perform the ritual of the ceremony that lasts 4 days. Now, understanding a little what they do each day:

  1. First Day: Meeting of families and the realization of the great ropes.
  2. Second Day: Installation of the basic structure of the new bridge.
  3. Third-Day: The Chakarumaq weave the bridge, cross the first people (authorities)
  4. Fourth Day: It is celebrated, thanks to the Pachamama

A very beautiful tradition that we can live with Andean Explorer’s Cusco, that is why we are pleased to be one of the best travel agencies to be present in your trips, we are very happy because despite the health crisis we live we continue to provide the best services for safe travel, healthy and enjoying the wonders of nature that the Inca city gives us.

Just take reasons to travel, you are your fan of achieving traveling experiences.

Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

Inca Bridge of Q'swachaka
Inca Bridge of Q’swachaka

Visiting the Inca Bridge of Q’eswachaka is an unforgettable experience. You can walk on the ichu boards, feel the vibration of the bridge as you cross the river, and marvel at the beauty and history that surrounds it. It is an intimate encounter with the greatness of the Inca civilization and an opportunity to appreciate the wisdom and skill of those who came before us.

If you have the opportunity to visit the Cusco region, we invite you to explore the Inca Bridge of Q’eswachaka and immerse yourself in the magic of its history and its natural environment. It is a powerful reminder of the human capacity to create lasting wonders and a tribute to the culture that lives on in the heart of the Peruvian Andes.

🇵🇪See you soon! 🇵🇪