Sunday, July 12, 2020
Exodus from Machu Picchu Pueblo
On Friday, local service trains began operating to and from the district of Machupicchu, in the Cusco province of Urubamba.
A large number of people took advantage of the resumption of operations to leave the Machu Picchu Pueblo (also know as Aguas Calientes). With mattresses and luggage, dozens of people waited for the train very early to leave the town where all economic activity is paralyzed by the lack of tourists. The COVID-19 bankrupted many service companies and left hundreds of people unemployed.
They have closed their businesses, taken their things out and now they are leaving in search of a new opportunity outside the small town.
“We can no longer pay for the places we live by renting,” said one worker.
“Unfortunately there is no official date yet and many shops remain closed. Now we can no longer pay for the places where we live by renting, and there are also certain sectors that do not want activities to resume in Machupicchu for fear of contagion from COVID-19,” said another worker.
The regional governor of Cusco, Jean Paul Benavente, announced that the activities in this cultural site should be resumed on July 24, although this date is still uncertain.
The village was used to receiving between 2000 and 3000 people daily in the low season (December to April) and in the peak period, between May and October, it received up to 7000 visitors per day.
In Machu Picchu Pueblo there were 247 hotels and lodgings, 237 restaurants, 200 shops of different types together with their suppliers of products and 250 people were dedicated to the production and sale of handicrafts. Each business employed an average of six people.
Daily COVID Update from Minsa
The Ministry of Health (Minsa) reported 3,616, new cases of COVID-19 as well as 188 COVID-related deaths.
There are 11,723 patients hospitalized with Covid-19, of which 1,316 are in ICU with mechanical ventilation. So far 217,111 people completed their period of home isolation or were discharged from a health facility.
Metropolitan Lima continues to be the area with the highest number of Covid-19 infections with 164,226 positive cases and Lima provinces with 11,405 cases followed by the regions of Callao (19,080), Piura (18,738), Lambayeque (15,057), La Libertad (11,964), Loreto (9800), Áncash (9554), Ucayali (8713), Ica (9294), Arequipa (8917), San Martín (6608), Junín (5143), Tumbes (3416) Huanuco (3736), Amazonas (3333), Cajamarca (3494), Madre de Dios (2431), Ayacucho (2289), Cusco (2266), Pasco (1330), Moquegua (1341), Puno (1152), Tacna (1302), Huancavelica (1082) and Apurimac (655).
COVID in Cusco
The Regional Health Directorate reported yesterday 236 new cases of COVID-19 and 5 more deaths.
Notably, the percentage of positive tests shot up to 9.9% — over double the previous day and far above the overall percentage of just 4.7%. This should be extremely concerning to all who live in the region. (Unfortunately, they did not report where the positive results were found.)
Pallay Poncho to be Pushed as New Tourist Attraction
The district municipalities of Layo (Canas), Maranganí (Canchis), and the Directorate of Foreign Trade and Tourism of Cusco (Dircetur) signed a commitment to work together to insert the mountain Pallay Poncho in national and international tourist destinations.
In a brief ceremony this pact was made concrete, where the authorities said that tourism will generate direct and indirect employment for the inhabitants of both districts. In addition, they hope that this proposal will be further consolidated with the coveted Colca Canyon tourism corridor in Arequipa and Suykutambo in Cusco, which will attract more visitors to the area.
After an inspection, Dircetur Cusco’s representative, Guido Quiñones, indicated that it is necessary to carry out some work such as defining the best route for climbing, installing safety cordons, and signaling, among other aspects, for the arrival of tourists. He specified that a Copesco engineer will participate in the next visit.
The Pallay Poncho mountain is three hours away from the city of Cusco. It is characterized by a geological formation with sharp points and various colors, similar to the ponchos used in the Peruvian highlands and places such as the Vinicunca (also known as Rainbow Mountain).
It is a tourist attraction visited mainly by the people of Cusco and is close to archaeological sites such as Rapchi, Puente Inca and Langui Layo.
Misc New Highlights
- Thirty-nine elderly adults from the “El Buen Jesús” retirement home, located in the district of Paucarpata (Arequipa), tested positive for COVID-19.
- Health Ministry to install 100 hospital beds in Quillabamba and Sicuani in the Cusco region.
- La Libertad requires a total of 582 hospital beds for inpatients with the COVID-19. In the province of Trujillo alone, 308 beds are required, of which 142 will be for Minsa facilities and 166 for social security, as determined after the technical meeting between the National Command of Operations COVID-19 and the Regional Government.
- A cleaning and disinfection day was held at the land terminal in the city of Juliaca, being ready for its reopening and start of activities with the interregional trips from July 15, this, according to the schedule determined by the Central Government.
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