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“Great "living" museum”

Pumapungo Museum and Arqueological Park - MCYP
Ranked #6 of 171 things to do in Cuenca
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Museum and Ancestral Park of Pumapungo, are the two main elements that conform the cultural complex administered by Ecuador's Culture and Heritage Ministry in the city of Cuenca. These are public spaces, open to a variety of cultural activities, projects, and initiatives, that have a very profound meaning for Cuenca's citizens. Pumapungo Museum has a lot of different components. It has seven temporary exhibition rooms were a wide diversity of exhibitions are produced: art, history, photography, sculpture are some of them. It also has an archeology exhibition room - site museum, where the development of society is explained through time, as well as the Inca occupation and findings at the Pumapungo archeological site. In addition, the museum exhibits the national ethnography room, where Ecuador's multicultural diversity is displayed through vivid representations of every day's life, dresses, instruments and images. The museum also counts with a library and historic archive; both open for free and open access from the public, art, archeology and ethnography reserves, which are available for students as well as for national and international investigators. In total, the complex conserves around 160.000 cultural and heritage goods. Another important component of the cultural complex is the Ancestral Park. There are three main elements: The archeological park, where visitors can appreciate the remains of the once most important administrative, military and religious center of the northern part of the Inca Empire; the Ethnobotanic park, with more than 230 species of native Andean plants and trees, this space has become the last native ecological niche in the center of Cuenca, and it is the reason why it is visited by more than 30 local species of birds daily. The park is also a very important space for educational activities aimed at illustrate ancestral knowledge and traditions. The bird rescue center is the last element of Pumapungo's Ancestral Park. At the moment it contains about 200 birds of around 25 species. It complements the whole educative content of the park, as this animals are filled with significance and myths of our ancestors. We work together with the Ministry of environment to fight against the illicit traffic of native species. In this area we cure and feed the birds that are brought by the competent authorities. After the birds have reached its optimal shape, we coordinate its liberation in the birds original environment. Shamefully, in most of the cases, this liberation process is not possible, as the birds have suffered from irreversible injuries, and conditioning of their behavior. The park has a full time 13 people team, that carry the traditional knowledge needed to attend all of its areas. Biologists, veterinarians, agronomic engineers, are amongst them.
Reviewed October 1, 2012

Loved this - it's been done more as a history/commentary on the people of the country using lots of models. We didn't spend any time on the art side of it, but really soaked up all the displays showing the different indigenous people, their customs, clothes, ways of hunting, etc

Thank STELLA08Auckland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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362 - 366 of 692 reviews

Reviewed September 25, 2012

The museum is worth visiting since it is free, but doesn't quite have itself together. There were some good visual scenes of indigenous lifestyle, but the lighting was poor. I ran into the base of a display that stuck out. It was painted black in a dark room. Also the sensors that go off when you've crossed into a restricted area don't work correctly and go off when you are not even close to crossing the line. The shrunken heads are really cool, but they don't offer a ton of explanation about them. Overall an average museum that has a lot of potential.

Thank Bethany W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 16, 2012

Not to be missed -- it addresses (in English, too) the history of the area and the indigenous cultures. Very accessible information, in a typically excellent Banco Central delivery. Take your time with the Amazonian culture's shrunken head display; it covers it beautifully and in a respectful and informative way. Love the sloth heads! And the outdoor ruins are fascinating, worth the walk down the big hill. The huge bird cage section was a surprise to us -- glad we kept walking.

Thank nancyye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2012

We are not regular museum visitors but enjoyed this one which tried to cover a lot of Ecuadors indigineous history and people. After you finish there are some ruins behind the building and nice garden area with an aviary containing many of the unbelievable birds of the amazan (toucans, macaws etc)

Thank teamflames
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 11, 2012

The lighting on the exhibits was more artisitic than functional. It was often too dark to see the details of the exhibit or read the material. They also don't allow pictures which detracted from our experience. We won't have any memories to share with friends and family when we get home.

Thank bauerchick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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