Machu Picchu: If you are interested in unexplored places and cities of unsolved mysteries, then you should definitely visit Machu Picchu. This ancient Inca city is safely hidden high in the Peruvian Andes and it is no coincidence that it was included in the list of new wonders of the world. Every year thousands of tourists come here to see this mysterious and amazing place with their own eyes.
Mysterious city in the Andes
The ancient and legendary city is located between two mountain peaks in the Andes. It is located at an altitude of 2450 meters above sea level. That is why the place is called the Heavenly City of the Incas. It was built back in the 16th century and subsequently mysteriously abandoned by the locals. All structures have been standing for more than 500 years. Neither rains nor mountain landslides could destroy it.
The unique historical complex was officially recognized as the New Wonder of the World in 2007. Due to the huge number of tourists coming to this place, it was decided to limit the number of visitors to the lost city of the Incas. Now no more than 2,500 tourists are allowed to enter the unique territory. And only 400 visitors are allowed to climb to the top of Mount Huayna Picchu.
Historians claim that the city arose in 1400, and the locals left it in 1532 during the invasion of the Spanish conquerors into the territory. If we rely on research data, then about 1200 people lived in the city at that time, who worshiped the sun god Inti, whose temple has survived to this day among the buildings.
A mysterious and unique place was discovered in 19 by an American researcher, a professor at Yale University. Hyrum Bingham. To date, it has not been possible to find out exactly why the locals left the city. There are many versions from an epidemic to an elementary loss of the value of the city.
The construction of the city was carried out without the use of any bonding mixtures. All buildings are supported by their own weight. The stones are stacked like a puzzle.
Many people call Machu Picchu “the city in the sky” or “the city among the clouds”. On one side are palaces and temples, and the main city square is surrounded by houses of scientists. Artists and priests. The far slope of the mountain was assigned to the peasants. All buildings were built from wild stone, which was mined nearby, in a mountain quarry.
Local residents planned everything in such a way that the city could independently exist independently of the rest of the world. A person could spend his whole life in this place without leaving his native city. Here is the grandiose Temple of the Sun. It is an outstanding example of ancient Inca architecture. Here you can observe how unusually the buildings and structures were built, the masonry is simply amazing. Below the temple is the Royal Tomb.
It is literally carved into the rocks, as well as the Royal Quarter with dwellings grouped around a still-functioning water canal and interconnected fountains. Nearby is the Temple of the Three Windows with the Sacred Square, the Main Temple, the Sacristy, and the House of the Priest. If you climb up the stairs, you can see the famous ancient Intihuatan calendar. It was in this place that astronomical phenomena were calculated. At the top of the mountain is a sacred stone that looks like a sundial. There is information that they were used to determine the year, month, day, and hour.
Another sanctuary is the Temple of the Moon. This place is not visited very often. There are a lot of mystical recesses, portals, and niches in this unique place. Various thrones and an altar were also built here. Away from the central square is the Temple of the Condor. It differs from all other buildings by a dark rock, which symbolizes the wings of a huge bird, as well as a pale rock below. She represents her head.
What does the ancient city look like today?
Machu Picchu is the center of mass tourism. A railway was built here, which provides access for tourists to this unique place. Many travel agencies and Cusco guides offer a huge selection of routes to Machu Picchu. You can choose from a one-day tour, a two-day tour, or a four-day hike.
The most common is a one-day tour. It starts at 6 am. At this time, tourists are picked up from hotels and taken to the bus station, then transfer to the train, and then again the journey continues by bus. The one-day tour is ideal for those with limited time. As for the two-day trip, choosing it, you will have the opportunity to spend the night in the village Aguas Calientes, visit Machu Picchu in the early hours, and climb to the top of Mount Wayna Picchu. The most economical is a combined three-day tour, during which you can visit all the unique places and enjoy your vacation to the fullest.
The cheapest way to get to Machu Picchu is by public transport, and the most interesting way is to hike along the Inca Trail.
The city consists of several hundred buildings and has a clear structure. It is considered the pride of Peru and one of its main attractions. The ancient architectural complex covers an area of more than 30 thousand hectares and is rightfully considered a masterpiece of Indian architecture. The city is located in a surprisingly picturesque place – among impregnable cliffs, at an altitude of more than 2000 meters above the river valley. Urubamba.
Machu Picchu is a place of amazing history and unsolved mysteries. Many tourists seek to get here to see with their own eyes the perfect building art of the Incas. The original Inca trail along the river has also been preserved. In the valley bordered by high mountains, through which Urubamba winds, there is almost never a wind. Twilight reigns here even during the day, and the roar of water drowns out all sounds. Learn more about Machu Picchu at the museum in Cusco, which exhibits unique items from this city. The fact is that after the discovery of the ancient city by Professor Hiram Bingham, who conducted research, a huge number of artifacts found there turned out to be taken out.
Arriving at this place, you should definitely visit Mount Wayna Picchu. Here you will see many residential and temple buildings. Before embarking on this journey, it should be borne in mind that the path there is dangerous and requires good physical preparation.
Many tourists, in addition to visiting Machu Picchu, choose to climb one of the two neighboring mountains -Huayna Picchu and Monagnu to take beautiful photos of the ancient Inca city from above their peaks. Huayna Picchu is considered the highest mountain in the complex. Its height reaches 2,720 meters. From the top, there is a beautiful and really bewitching view of the main square. Canyon and surroundings. Monagnu is located at the southwestern end of the city. The view from this mountain is also magnificent and for this, it is worth taking the time to experience unforgettable moments in life.
Flora and fauna
Archaeological ruins amaze with their picturesque views. In addition, various representatives of flora and fauna live here. On the territory of about 32.5 thousand hectares, exotic trees and plants grow that amaze and stun with their grandeur. More than 400 species of orchids and begonias also grow here, of which just over 250 varieties have been described and systematized. Animals living here are also striking in species diversity.
Beat Time to visit Machu Picchu
You can visit Machu Picchu at any time of the year. But in order to make the trip as comfortable as possible, we recommend that you consider the following factors. The dry season runs from April to October, while the rainy season starts from November to March. The temperature throughout the season is fairly even, regardless of the season.
Many inhabitants of our planet dream of going on a trip to Machu Picchu. Here you can get in touch with history and feel the spirit of a distant time. Machu Picchu is actually a very mysterious and ancient city. The main secret of this place is considered to be the hot springs that surround the mountainous area and the unique views of the city from observation platforms and the mountains surrounding this place. The ancient Inca city of Machu Picchu is also distinguished by the fact that here, now merged together, two layers of construction technologies coexist.
Inca Trail: Most Asked Questions About the Hiking
Frequently Asked Questions About Machu Picchu
Q. What is Machu Picchu famous for?
A – At over 7,000 feet above sea level in the Andes Mountains, Machu Picchu is the most visited tourist destination in Peru. A symbol of the Inca Empire and built around 1450AD, Machu Picchu was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983 and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007.
Q. What happened in Machu Picchu?
A – In 1572, with the fall of the last Incan capital, their line of rulers came to an end. Machu Picchu, a royal estate once visited by great emperors, fell into ruin. Today, the site is on the United Nations list of World Heritage Sites.
Q. Why is Machu Picchu in danger?
A – Machu Picchu faces a number of threats: excessive tourism, which is especially difficult at the fragile site; production of solid waste; sustainable farming practices; excessive grazing and forest fires; severe erosion; landslides; mineral extraction; and the introduction of exotic plants.
Q. How long does it take to get to Machu Picchu?
A – There are several trekking routes from the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. However, the classic Inca Trail route is a 3 to 5-day hike, and on average, it takes 4 days and 3 nights to reach Machu Picchu.
Q. Why is Machu Picchu so mysterious?
A – Another great mystery of Machu Picchu is how it was built without wheels. Although the Incas are believed to have been aware of the existence of the wheel, they never used it. Many of the large granite rocks used in the construction of the citadel had to be moved somehow to establish the steep Andean mountains.
Q. Why did Machu Picchu take so long?
A – The big question is, how did it take so long to find it? The answer lies in the preventive measures taken by the Incas to avoid its discovery. The Incas abandoned the site after one hundred years because they built it in fear that Spanish settlers would find it.
Q. Why is there a no-fly zone over Machu Picchu?
A – Today, visitors can only see an estimated 40% of the site, with the remaining 60% of the ruins covered by vegetation. To preserve the site and keep tourism sustainable, there is a no-fly zone over Machu Picchu, a daily limit of 2,500 visitors per day, and a one-way walkway to reduce foot traffic.
Q. Can you spend the night in Machu Picchu?
A – You can stay at the famous Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge, with its exceptional location from the entrance to the ruins themselves. An overnight stay here means you spend an afternoon exploring the archaeological site after most visitors have left, and can make discoveries right up to closing time.
Q. What language does Machu Picchu speak?
A – Cusco, the ancient capital of the Inca Empire, is one of the largest Quechua speakers in Peru. It is estimated that 45% of its population speaks this language.
Q. Was Machu Picchu built by slaves?
A – It turned out that agricultural power was created by “mitma”, slaves from different parts of the empire. It is estimated that the largest number of them were Chanak, who also built the city. They were enslaved and captured from their lands (now Apurimac and Ayacucho) after they were defeated by the Pachacutecs.
Q. Why did they make Machu Picchu so high?
A – Castle. The inaccessibility of Machu Picchu makes it a natural hideout to protect the Sapa Inca and their family from invaders. To protect the city, the Incas built a 6 m high 1.8 m wide wall that surrounded the city.
Q. Who built Machu Picchu?
A – Machu Picchu in modern-day Peru was built around 1450 AD and has been named one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It is said that the structure/city was built for the Incan emperor Pachacuti. This amazing wonder was discovered by history professor Hiram Bingham in 1911.
Q. What is the best month to visit Machu Picchu?
A – Winter (May-September) is the driest season and therefore the best time of year to visit, especially if you are planning to visit Cusco or Machu Picchu. Summers (December-March) is certainly hot, but it is also the hottest season, with frequent heavy rains.
Q. Where do you fly to Machu Picchu?
A – Jorge Chávez International Airport is Peru’s main airport, an hour and a half flight from Cusco, the nearest airport to Machu Picchu.
Q. Can you do Machu Picchu in one day?
A – Yes, you can. Ticket Machu Picchu + Huayna Picchu is designed in such a way that the visitor has enough time to visit ‘Machu’ and ‘Wayna’ in 1 day. The ticket has 3 shifts which give time to the tourists to enjoy the wonder of the world to the fullest.
Q. What is the best way to get to Machu Picchu?
A – The easiest way is from Cusco by train along the floor of the Urubamba Valley, then by bus to the entrance to the ruins. Alternatively, from the station in Aguas Calientes, you can opt for a strenuous walk to Machu Picchu – expect it to take 90 minutes to two hours.
Q. What do you need to visit Machu Picchu?
A – To access Machu Picchu, you must have an entrance ticket purchased in advance… they are not sold at the entrance to Machu Picchu. Tickets are usually included as part of any tour or trek to Machu Picchu. Tickets are limited, so it is recommended to book a tour or trek at least a week in advance.