Also in Northern Chile, there will be a big party: At the “Carnaval Altiplánico”, colourful parades showcasing local fraternities or dance groups in January and February. The biggest festival is “Con la Fuerza del Sol” in Arica this year from February 10th -12th. During this festival, visitors can appreciate Chile´s first immaterial UNESCO World Heritage: the expressive “Bailes Chinos”, performed on religious occasions for the veneration of saints in northern Chile for more than 400 years. The dances meld two ancient influences: that of the Spanish conquistadores, with their music and their traditions of joining holy fraternities (“cofradías”), and the dances and rites of the native Quechua inhabitants. Over the course of time a unique tradition of celebratory dance arose, adapted by inhabitants of the north as their very own cultural heritage. While the name “Bailes Chinos” means “Chinese Dances” in Spanish, the dances have nothing to do with China: “chino” is also the Quechua word for “servant”, and the dancers are meant to be the servants of the Virgin Mary.
If you would like to book a trip to northern Chile for your clients, your travelArt sales partner will be happy to help you. The carnival takes place yearly, the dates for 2018 are not yet known. If you are interested, we will be happy to notify you as soon as the date is published.