an ancient Inca ritual to attract tourists

An ancient Incan ritual honoring the sun god was re-enacted in Lima on Friday, hoping to boost tourism after months of protests across Peru.

Inti Raimi is usually performed at the winter solstice in June and was brought to the capital along with a light show.

Peruvian President Dina Boluarte said it was a “celebration” for the powerful Inca Empire.

Earlier this year, an anti-government protest movement developed in the country.

The city of Cusco, where the citadel of Machu Picchu is located, evacuated tourists and blocked access to the ruins for weeks between January and February.

Peru’s most famous site has yet to recover in terms of visitor numbers.

According to historians, the Incas believed that the winter solstice each year marked the rebirth of a sun god who watched them from above and decided their harvest.

Participants in the celebration, dressed in gold and silver jewellery, amid drama, dancing and simulated llama sacrifices.

The Spanish conquistadors and Roman Catholic priests banned the celebration in the 16th century, but the faithful kept the rite alive with small underground celebrations.

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