2,761-m/9,082 ft above sea level.
Located in the south central Andes over an area of 44,181 km², 88% of Ayacucho’s territory is located in the mountain area, while the rest spreads over the High Jungle. Ayacucho is home to approximately 541,000 people.
The capital is the city of Ayacucho (called Huamanga by the local residents). At 2,761 m.a.s.l./9,082 ft, its climate is mild, dry and invigorating, with an average temperature of 17.5°C/63.5°F. The rainy season runs from November through March.
A Brief History
The first vestiges of human presence in Ayacucho are found in the Pikimachay cave and date from 20,000 BC. Later on, during the formative period, between 1,000 BC and the first years of our era, other settlements appeared in Rancha, Chupas and Wichqana. The Warpa civilization developed in the Ayacucho region between 250 and 500 AD followed by the Wari Empire and to then give way to the Chanka regional state from the 6th to 12th centuries.
After the Incas conquered Ayacucho they built a provincial administrative center of great importance in the zone of Vilcashuaman. When the Spanish arrived, they founded the city of San Juan de la Frontera, located between the towns of Quinua and Huamanguillas. However, due to strategic and weather reasons, the center was transferred to Pukaray.
In December 9, 1824, the Battle of Ayacucho put an end to Spanish dominance.
Main Attractions in Ayacucho
The ancestral colonial mansions and 38 churches and monasteries in Ayacucho make it a very attractive city. The Cathedral and churches of Santo Domingo, San Cristobal, La Merced, Compañia de Jesus, San Francisco de Asís, Santa Clara and Santa Teresa stand out. Their architecture –some date from 1540– is remarkable. Some were built in Baroque style, others in Churrigueresque. Besides their rose colored stone they also have beautiful altars in fine carved wood and gold leaf.
Santa Ana Quarter
Famous for the beautiful work of its weavers and potters.
San Juan and Teneria Quarters
Known for their leather handicrafts.
120 km south of Ayacucho, this was an Inca administrative center with outstanding buildings including the Temples of the Sun and the Moon, the Ushno or ceremonial pyramid and the plazas, among others.
In the province by the same name, this lagoon houses the parihuanas, birds with red wings and white breasts that inspired Libertador San Martin when he conceived the Peruvian flag.
Beautiful town located at 51 km from Ayacucho. The valley stands out for its rich animal and plant life.
A pre-Inca citadel located 22-km from Ayacucho, Wari was the capital of the Wari Empire and, according to historians, sheltered a population of 5,000 people. Walls, graves, canals, etc. are among the vestiges left by these people.
Town of potters 37 km from the capital, Quinua was the stage for the Battle of Ayacucho that sealed the independence of Peru and confirmed the end of Spanish rule.
A rcheological remains near Vilcashuaman featuring a palace, a tower, the Inca baths (with a 17-corner stone) and an artificial lagoon.
Natural forest located on the way to Vilcashuaman. It shelters numerous specimens of the Raimondi Puya or Tintanka, the tallest plant in the world. Some puyas grow as high as 12 m.
Pampa Galeras National Reserve
Located in the province of Lucanas, here vicuñas are reared in their natural habitat.