The Inti Raymi, which takes place annually in the Peruvian city of Cusco, on June 24, when the winter solstice in the southern hemisphere occurs, is an Incan religious festival in honor of Inti, the sun god. (Photo : Carlos Matos/Getty Images)
Cajamarca in Peru will be visited by thousands for its carnival, known to feature a variety of fun activities and spectacles. Particularly, the craziest carnival in Peru will begin with the “balloon wars.”
PeruThisWeek revealed that the Cajamarca Carnival Board featured their summer festival program in December 2015. New provincial mayor Manual Becerra Vilchez serves as head of the board and announced the revival of various traditional components of the festival for the 2016 carnival. The Municipality of Cajamarca and other sponsors are already pooling funds to ensure the success of the event.
“One of the priorities of our management will recover and give value to our cultural, social and historical events, which is what gives us identity,” said Mayor Becerra. Cajamarca is deemed by many as the capital of the Peruvian carnival, which is why the city is exerting a lot of effort to guarantee an excellent show for the thousands attending.
The Cajamarca Carnival is set to commence with its first event on Jan. 21, 2016. The festival will continue until Feb. 18. Locals and potential visitors are already excited with the opening activity, which is said to be the biggest water fight in Latin America, dubbed “balloon wars.”
Latin Correspondent revealed that it has become a tradition for people to gather at the main square every year, carrying water balloons, water pistols, and buckets with the aim of drenching any person in sight.
Although locals and guests generally view the activity as good clean fun, there are also detractors who claim that the balloon wars only waste a lot of water. Authorities also previously planned to ban the activity, saying that it may damage ancient architectural creations. Overall, the popularity and significance of the balloon wars resulted to it becoming an official part of the Cajamarca Carnival.
The year 2016 will feature the second official “balloon war,” which will happen in the Ohapaq Nan complex, based on the same Latin Correspondent report. The municipality provided a huge cistern and hoses in the wetland area for participants to prepare their balloons. There will also be free water balloons, prizes and related contests during the activity.
Authorities are aiming to make the complex the main battleground for the balloon wars to keep people away from the city’s center and prevent potential damage to heritage sites. Local police are also expected to be available to set limits to revelers.
Andina cited that there will be about 12,000 local and foreign tourists joining the carnival.