Myths and legends of the Peruvian jungle

The Peruvian jungle is a place that has always aroused a lot of curiosity, not only for its beauty and biodiversity, but also for its mysteries and legends. The Peruvian tropic Amazon is an extraordinary place!

Yacumama “mother of the water”

According to legend, Yacumama is the protective spirit of the Amazon River. Its appearance is like that of an anaconda, but much larger, it exceeds 30 meters long and its head reaches 2 meters wide. It almost always appears when it rains. Thanks to his powers of attraction he manages to make his victims walk near his jaw and then eat them.


Tunche meaning “fear” is the name of this being wich is known to wander at night in the Peruvian jungle. Tunche can take the form of a relative or friend of the victim to facilitate it’s approach. Some say he can live inside an animal, others say he is a sorcerer or a spirit that enjoys terrorizing people. However, it is neither good nor bad, the Tunche reflects the true being of the people he meets. If a person is bad, the Tunche will make him pay for the damage he has done and if the person is good it will only remind him not to dare to do good.


Forest Goblin

This is the legend of a dwarf demon who is responsible for the disappearance of many people. The Chullachaqui, has the ability to adapt it’s appearance to that of a loved one (just like the Tunche) and thus catch his victim easier. But what this being cannot hide is its crooked leg, which is the only way to recognize it. Its name in Quechua is “chulla chaqui” which means “different foot”


The mule woman

The myth of the Runamula was born with the arrival of the Spanish missionaries to the jungle. It is a creature half woman and half mule, which appears on full moon days. The legend tells of a punishment of adultery that a woman received for maintaining an extramarital relationship with a priest.