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$97 USDPer person

Awamaki is a nonprofit organization that empowers rural Andean women by connecting them with global markets and helping them run successful cooperative businesses, enabling them to lead their communities out of poverty.

Tour Highlights

  • Learn from Awamaki artisans about their ancient weaving and culinary traditions while helping 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 will be invested in providing women in remote and marginalized communities with a comprehensive education, workplace training, and market access.

Tour Details

  • Frequency

    Monday - Saturday by appointment

  • 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 you 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.

8 Visitor Reviews

  •  
    Schuyler ●  Apr 11, 2017

    This was an amazing trip. Our guide Juan was so personable and knew so much about the history. We very much enjoyed learning to Weave in Pachanca and had a great experience.

  •  
    onerosenz ●  Jul 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.

  •  
    Nora ●  Jun 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.

See all 8 reviews

Tour Start Address

In the plaza (there is only one plaza in Ollantaytambo), in front of La Esquina café, Ollantaytambo, Cusco, Peru

How To Get There

Ollantaytambo is around 90 minutes drive from Cusco.

More About Awamaki

Mission

To collaborate with the greater Ollantaytambo community to create economic opportunities and improve social well-being.

Main Programs

  • Training in quality control, product development, and technical skills improvement to build women’s overall capacity

  • Connecting women with international designers and global markets as a way to ensure sustainable incomes for local families

  • Connecting rural women with economic opportunities through sustainable tourism experiences that promote an appreciation for Andean traditions and ways of life

Awards & Recognition

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