Popayán is more than a white city

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2 hours in a half from Cali and 1.760 meters above sea level, what gives its extraordinary climate, it is located the Capital of the Department Cauca, Popayán, the birth city of various former presidents of Colombia, heroes of the independence and illustrious character from Colombian history. [caption id="attachment_3243" align="alignright" width="300"] María Elena Giraldo © Solkes[/caption] Going to the center of the city gives a feeling of being transported to 4 or 5 previous centuries, it is not in vain that the UNESCO has declared it historic patrimony and gastronomic from Colombia and its processions in holy week, oral and immaterial patrimony of humanity. It is precisely during Holy Week, the period of time where thousands of people move to this city, some with hope to obtain a heavenly miracle due to its peregrination, others moved the curious aesthetic of the colonial city, without a doubt no one goes home empty handed. The peregrinations are filled with fervor, they are solemn and massive, the carriers, which in general are those people, freighters people who usually are illustrious people of the city are those who carry in their shoulders there called “steps” which are the representation of life, crucifixion, death, resurrection of Jesus. These beautiful steps are a work of Art, some carved by the artistic schools of Italy, Spain and Popayán, the peregrination are continuously developing since the century XVI and they are carried out at night, lighted by candles, preceded by marching bands and orchestra which tune sad songs that incite meditation, march of the arm forces or people from civil societies and some unions. [caption id="attachment_3244" align="aligncenter" width="996"] María Elena Giraldo © Solkes[/caption] Being a freighter is an honor that is transmitted from generation to generation. The majority of them inherit this responsibility since they are young and they do it during their whole life, a freighter is easily recognized by the marks on their shoulder and some have a great protuberance that they exhibit with honor as symbol of years of carrying in their ways the steps of Jesus. [caption id="attachment_3245" align="alignleft" width="300"] María Elena Giraldo © Solkes[/caption] Also the Sahumadoras, young women preceding the parade scattering incense and adorned with beautiful costumes typical of Ñapangas (mestizo or mulatto women from the colonial era); Sahumadora title is considered a great honor and a privilege reserved for very few. During the day walking through the center of the city is fascinating, with its old streets and beautiful white constructions that really transport you to another era, cafeterias that are more than 100 years old. Delicious empanados of Pipian with peanut sauce and cassava of Yucca, Cholados and Champús (drink with fruits and fermented corn) it becomes and excel option to refresh from the daily heat, even the international restaurants that are found in Popayán they make it a diverse gastro with tastes for everyone. You cannot leave Popayán without visiting the Museums. The Religious Art Museum, that has an extraordinary collection; Mosquera Museum, which transport the visitor through a great part of the history of the independence of Colombia, Negret Museum, it has an interesting collection of Modern art and the Museum Guillermo Leon Valencia also has a complete path through the epoch of the Colombian National Front. To end the day and appreciate the sunset, you can climb the hill and see the whole city from the top. [caption id="attachment_3246" align="aligncenter" width="996"] María Elena Giraldo © Solkes[/caption] For those who visit Popayán as a religious perigrination there are beautiful colonial churches along the city, you can begin the route with Church Belen, which has Saint Ecce Homo that rested in the sanctuary of Belen since 1717. Hundreds of pilgrims go on Good Friday, some without shoes with the end of doing the penance or sacrifice. There is also the Metropolitan Cathedral of la Asuncion, the Church of Saint Francis, which has an extraordinary collection of religious art. The Church of Santo Domingo, Church of San Jose before named the Church of the company of Jesus and the Church of Yanaconas. [caption id="attachment_3247" align="aligncenter" width="996"] María Elena Giraldo © Solkes[/caption] At the same time the Religious Music Festival develops, which invites musicians, singers of diverse latitudes; pianist, cellist, exponents of soul, jazz, contemporary and classical music, they come together for 7 days to show their music in the majestic Theater Guillermo Leon Valencia, which open its doors in 1927 and has been performing this festival for 53 years. Leaving the city, the picture is a little bleak, architectural and artistic beauty center, contrasts with the poverty of indigenous people, displaced roaming the road reminding us that Colombia is a country of contrasts. Popayán is definitely a destination to be visited and Easter a unique experience, so Popayán in more than a White City, it is a diverse city, steeped in history, a city back in time, where is valued and respected the tradition.]]>

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