Nestled in the heart of Peru’s Sacred Valley and only one hour from Cusco, we recently discovered the Apulaya Center for Andean Culture. Apulaya is a small but fascinating place that allows visitors to learn about traditional Quechua culture through Andean music, textile arts, Quechua language, and indigenous cultural studies.
Apulaya was founded and is currently run by musician Valerio Fernandez and artist Emerita Bucher. This wonderful couple was incredibly welcoming and very informative during our stay. Valerio showed us the music studio with a full collection of pre-Columbian and traditional instruments. We then listened to Emerita describe a pre-Incan textile she was working on. Valerio’s mother Apolonia, an expert on textile arts, explained to us the process of hand dyeing.
We were struck by the beauty and tranquility of Apulaya, which is located in the heart of Peru’s Sacred Valley. They offer short half-day workshops as well as semester and summer-long programs at very affordable prices. This would be an ideal way to spend a day exploring your creativity and learning about a different culture. Apulaya is only an hour from Cusco by car, and is located in the town of Calca. Visit their web site at www.apulaya.com.