Awamaki: Ollantaytambo Discovery Tour: The Art of Peruvian Weaving

Ollantaytambo Discovery Tour: The Art of Peruvian Weaving

Ollantaytambo, Peru

Awamaki

Non-profit organization

6 hours
From$70Per person

100% of host revenue is invested back into the local community

Awamaki is a non-profit organization that empowers rural Andean women and connects them to global markets, enabling them to transform their communities.

Tour Highlights

  • Learn from Awamaki artisans about their ancient weaving and culinary traditions and help support women’s social and economic empowerment in Ollantaytambo communities.
  • Master the basics of weaving from and create a beautiful “pulsera” (bracelet) to take home with you.
  • Cook an authentic and delicious Pachamanca meal to share and enjoy with your hosts.

Tour revenue helps provide women in remote and marginalized communities with a comprehensive education, workplace training, and market access.

Tour Details

  • Frequency

    Any day by appointment, except Sundays

  • Start Time

    9:00 am

  • Duration

    6 hours

  • Good For

    Adults, Families, Professionals

  • Languages

    English, Spanish

  • Difficulty

    Easy (short walking distances, low or no physical effort)

  • Clothing & Equipment

    Camera, Comfortable shoes for walking, Hat, Rain gear, Sunscreen lotion, Warm clothes

  • Tour Participants

    2 to 20

  • Volunteer Opportunities

    Yes

Tour Description

Looking for things to do in Peru? Embark on an unforgettable adventure now! Begin in Ollantaytambo, where you’ll meet your transportation in the Plaza de Armas in front of La Esquina café. Enjoy a beautiful drive as we ascend nearly 1,000 m from Ollanta to the upper Andean community of Patacancha or Huilloc (depending on the size of the group). The gravel road is bordered by Inca terracing, waterfalls, and traditional farm plots that are still used today. The communities that you’ll pass on your journey up the mountain are known for their traditional lifestyle, dress, and weaving.

Following a warm welcome at the local weaving center, learn from the women of the cooperative about their daily lives and the ancient art of weaving. Gain insight into Andean backstrap weaving as it relates to Andean culture and history. Then, test your own weaving skills and give spinning on an Andean drop spindle a try! Discover the potential of native dye plants that have been used for centuries. A woman from the cooperative will work with you one on one to teach the basic techniques of weaving. You’ll create your own “pulsera” (bracelet) to take home and showcase your new skills.

After the workshop, visit a traditional Quechua home and enjoy a lovingly prepared home-cooked meal. Your delicious lunch includes a soup and main course and will be hosted by a weaver in her own home (always close-by). If you want to expand your global culinary skills, you can select the earth-oven lunch option and work alongside women from the community to prepare a traditional Andean “Pachamanca” lunch. Cooked in an underground earth oven, this festive feast is a highlight of the tour and will provide plenty of food for you and your Quechua hosts to enjoy.

Before returning to Ollantaytambo, you’ll have the opportunity to purchase high quality, handmade textiles directly from the artisans.

7 Visitor Reviews

  • July 21, 2016

    We had been told by someone else about this women's weaving collective, and were keen to do it - we had a spare day in Ollantytambo and this was how we wanted to spend it.
    What was special? Being invited in to share the lives of real people. None spoke English, few even spoke spanish, they spoke Quechua the language of the indigenous Andes peoples.

    We watched them weave, learned about dying processes, had a go at weaving a bracelet, and shared lunch with them in one of their homes - with guinea pigs under the beds.

  • June 25, 2016

    The folks at Awamaki couldn’t have been nicer and more accommodating. It was definitely one of our best travel experiences, and we learned so much from the women. We were all amazed at the craftsmanship and effort it took to produce a woven piece.

  • May 22, 2016

    We really enjoyed visiting Patacancha, a day with many highlights. The drives up and back were lovely, we were able to stop at a small church for a rare peek inside, the village women were really welcoming, the traditional lunch delicious. We enjoyed our little weaving projects and each purchased handmade keepsakes. Vivian did a wonderful job of explaining things to us and clearly had a wonderful report with the weavers and their kids. We were happy to support this cause and felt our day was well spent.

See all 7 reviews

Tour Start Address

Calle Rumi, Nahui s/n, Pilcohuasi, Ollantaytambo, Cusco, Peru

How To Get There

Ollantaytambo is around 90 minutes drive from Cusco.

More About Awamaki

Mission

Our mission is to collaborate with the greater Ollantaytambo community to create economic opportunities and improve social well-being. We envision highly skilled Andean women artisans engaged in the market economy, running successful cooperative businesses, and leading their communities out of poverty.

Main Programs

  • Our women’s artisanal cooperatives weave, knit, spin and sew. We offer trainings in quality control, product development, and technical skills improvement to build women’s overall capacity.

  • Through the Awamaki Lab brand of products, we connect women with international designers and directly to global markets as a way to ensure sustainable incomes for local families.

  • Our Sustainable Tourism project connects rural women with economic opportunities, through women leading meaningful cultural experiences for tourists and promoting appreciation of Andean traditions and ways of life.

Awards & Recognition

Andean Alliance for Sustainable Development
Partner
Best of Travel Peru
Featured
RESPONSible Travel Peru
Partner