The Oasis of Huacachina

22:02 NovataSL 0 Comments

The city of Ica is located in the south of Peru and is about four hours away from Lima on bus, a lot of people visit the city for the tourist attraction that is known as “The Oasis of Huacachina”. Located three miles from the city of Ica, Huacachina has an interesting legend (there are many versions to the story but many facts remain the same). I shall also write about another famous legend that is popular in Ica, the palm tree with seven heads located 2 miles from the city of Ica in a small village of Cachiche. Firstly, the “The Oasis of Huacachina”, Huacachina (Huaca in Quechua means to morn and China in Spanish can mean many things in this case we can assume it means young woman). 

 Now during the times of the Inca´s there was a young woman or some stories mention a princess that was in love with a prince however, the prince suddenly passed away and so she found a place where she cried and returned there every day crying for her loved one, these tears collected into a large pool of water (oasis). One day while crying she was startled by a hunter that was watching her, she fled with her mantle dragging behind her and this according to legend created the huge sand dunes that surround the oasis. Now all legends state that she became a mermaid however, not many legends tell of why she became a mermaid, she just became one. Some say men have to careful not to fall to her song or she will drag them to the bottom of the oasis, according to one story she needs a soul of male victim every year to remain alive so she can continue to look for her loved one. Other versions mention instead of a hunter there was an evil spirit, another story states that while bathing in the oasis the princess saw the hunter with her mirror and as she ran she created the dune and on dropping the mirror created the oasis. One final legend I read about was written by Desert Nights a hotel located in Huacachina and this story changes completely. According to this story there was a young woman that had a pact with a god and this pact stated that she would never fall in love with anyone else however, while brushing her hair she caught the site of the hunter in her mirror and fell in love with him. The god became angry and turned her into a mermaid so she could never be with the hunter and her mantle blew in the wind creating the sand dunes and as she dropped the mirror it created the lagoon. In this story it is said that she comes out when the moon is full enticing single men with her song. 

The next legend focuses on the village of Cachiche which is said to have been inhabited by witches and here you will find a palm tree with many entangling trunks, it is said to have seven heads and the legends goes like this. The witches of Cachiche were well known for their remedies and medicine and it is said that in order to unlock the secrets that they desired they needed to sacrifice one of their own however, the one that was chosen did not want to die so she fled. Her attempt was futile as she tried to run she jumped up on top a palm tree and on doing so another witch created a magic lasso and tried to capture her.  
As they threw the lasso they missed splitting the tree till it had seven heads and the fleeing witch continued to evade capture till she jumped on the seventh head which broke and she was captured and taken to be sacrificed. Before dying the witched placed a curse on Ica and said if the seventh head ever grew back the city of Ica would be flooded.

One supposed witch Julia Hernández Pecho Viuda de Díaz is one of the famous and well-known witches who died at the age of 106 in 1987 warned of the curse but it was largely forgotten about. However, on the 29th January 1998 the River Ica burst its banks and the city of Ica was flooded and it is said that when the tree was observed the seventh head had started to grow and was quickly cut once again. In Ica the seventh head is observed and if it starts to grow again it is quickly cut. So these are the most popular legends of Ica and it is easy and inexpensive to get to Ica, so get on the bus and see these sites for yourself, you won´t be disappointed.

By: GringoPerú

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