July 24 – Festival of Santiago in Peru

Posted on July 24, 2018

Singing, dancing, costumes, traditional foods!

It sounds like a lot of other Peruvian festivals - and believe me, Peru does the festival thing well! - but the Festival of Santiago is supposed to be one of the most famous.

Actually, the Feast Day of Santiago is celebrated tomorrow, July 25, in many Spanish-speaking places in the world, such as Spain. Santiago is Spanish for "Saint James," with "San" or "Santa" meaning "Saint," and "-iago" being a version of "Yago," which is an old Spanish translation of "James." But in Peru, the Festival of Santiago is so big, it has to take more than one day. It sounds like some villages celebrate for a week or even longer.

One of the older traditions in Huancayo - something that may be dying out as a part of the festival - is the christening of cattle and sometimes the "marking" of cattle with a hot brand or with colorful earrings. Other farm animals may also be decorated or marked and shown off during the festival.

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