Parque de la Papa (Potato Park)
“Parque de la Papa” has 9,000 hectares – that go from 3,400 to 4,900 meters of altitude- that belong to six communities grouped for a sustainability project. You have to enter through the Sacaca community, located at 30 minutes from the town of Pisac, one that ¡s part of this enterprising started in 1997, together with Kuyo Grande, Chahuaytire, Pampallacta, Paru Paru and Amaru, thanks to the support of ANDES Association of Cusco and the assistance of the International Potato Center. The starting point for the project is the recovery of various tens of native potato species that grew in these lands, but the market disappeared and with ¡t, a series of customs, rituals and ancestral agricultural technology. Furthermore, the community members were conscious of the risk that meant the entry of the transgenic crops in Andean south, they made a sort of prevention and reinforcement of the culture of the various and entirely organic potatoes, and as an additional value, offer the responsible tourist of Peru and the world the possibility lo learn from this splendid sample of natural and human richness, in regard to the community members who are also knitters and maintain the festivities and extremely interesting practices. There are 6,000 farmers approximately involved in the project.
Currently, this park preserves 700 varieties of native potato, more than 400 repatriated (because they were already gone) and five that are wild. In this investigation and conservation center -its category is Area of Bicultural Heritage – the traveler can participate actively in the agricultural work with the community members, carry out walks for several days in different altitude scenarios, visit archeological ruins, as those of Pucará Pantilliclla, or visit the Kinsagocha lake, farming or crop fields, artisan or medicinal plants workshops. Here they also produce soaps, shampoos (own aromatic herbs) and textiles; among them are distinguished those from Chahuatire. For more information, please visit: www.parquedelapapa.org.pe and www.andes.org.pe.