Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Sights of Semana Santa

Semana Santa (Holy Week) is the biggest celebration in Tarma. People from all over Peru come here to enjoy the sights and sounds of the events leading up to Easter. Here are some of the things to do and see during Holy Week. (We'll leave out the not-so-holy activities that also abound during this week.)

Dancers parade around in costumes to represent past Peruvian cultures:

Closeup picture of the dancers so you can see the beautiful, colorful details:

Alfombras de flores (flower carpets) are the most famous part of Semana Santa in Tarma:

The flower carpets are created on the streets beneath flower arches:

The thousands of residents and visitors line the streets to see the flower carpets and to witness the processions, which take place every night:

The processions pass under the arches and over the flower carpets. (Note: the little light just below the pinnacle of the arch in this picture is the full moon):

All the visitors need food, which the street vendors are happy to supply:

These are churros, similar to a donut only they are rectangular:

The most attractive snacks are candied apples:

During Semana Santa, the women from the countryside surrounding Tarma come into town to sell their flower petals. This woman just arrived with her bags of flowers and her two little girls:

The country women in the Tarma area wear either the traditional white sombrero ...

... or the traditional stocking cap:

This woman smiled for Scott's camera, showing the typical dental problems of the poor people here. She has a wad of coca leaves (from which cocaine is extracted) in her mouth:

We hope you all have a happy Easter, even if it's not as exotic as Semana Santa in Tarma!


Sharon said...

Spectacular pictures and experiences - again! I've never seen such color and design in the most unlikely places as you've shown us. Just amazing!

Russ said...

What wonderful costumes, flower carpets, and food. Those Peruvians know how to celebrate, huh?