A destination that a multitude of people include in their “Wish List”. A trip to Machu Picchu, is currently one of the most popular places to visit and that many travelers from all over the world make it.
Many visit Machu Picchu, but most people know little about the history and significance of this ancient Inca monument.
Apart from its cultural heritage. By unearthing some of Machu Picchu’s many secrets, travelers can find their visit an even more impressive experience.
Machu Picchu, for the most part, was unknown to anyone outside the vicinity of local agricultural villages until 1911, when the American archaeologist, Hiram Bingham, told the world about the existence of a spectacular Inca construction.
It should be noted that archaeologist Hiram Bingham was the one who made the world aware of the existence of this Inca wonder. but the one who actually discovered or first arrived at machu picchu was the Peruvian farmer “Agustín Lizárraga“, according to the writer from Cuzco, Americo Rivas. this information and many more can be learned during a trip to machu picchu thanks to the explanation of truly prepared tourist guides.
archaeologist Hiram Bingham called Machu Picchu: the Lost City of the Incas, and researched the place for signs of the truth behind its curious history.
Later, Bingham published a book that describes his theories about the history of Machu Picchu, igniting the desire of travelers from around the world to complete the trip to Peru to glimpse the mystery.
♦ read more about adventures and trekking to Machu Picchu: inca trail, salkantay to Machu Picchu, trekking valley of lares to Machu Picchu.
when machu picchu was built?
It is predicted that the monument was built in 1450, at the height of the Inca Empire during the XV and XVI centuries. One of the most curious mysteries of Machu Picchu is that it is suspected that the site was abandoned by the Incas only 100 years after its construction and this is what has provoked such an enthusiastic debate about the original purpose of the monument.
An interesting theory suggests that Machu Picchu may have served as a “panaca”; a royal retreat for the Inca kings during the suffocating summer months, when the altitude of the monuments’ location provided a cool refuge.
The structure of the monument reveals a functionality of three classes, with different buildings suitable for housing royalty, nobles and servants. In addition, a document of the XVI century Spanish conqueror, discovered by historians, refers to a royal palace called ‘picchu‘, although in the South American indigenous Quechua language, ‘picchu‘ means ‘pico‘, therefore, the document may refer to a different mountain above ‘panaca’.
Many visitors after a trip to machu picchu, describe the place as “spiritual“. This leads very well to a different theory, which proposes that the monument was built to serve a spiritual purpose and was an important site for religious ceremonies during the Inca Empire.
What god or deity did the Incas worship?
the sun god or “inti” was one of the deities worshipped by the Incas because of its life-giving powers, and curiously the monument and its buildings are lined with spiritually significant mountains that perfectly frame the sunrises and sunsets during the equinoxes and solstices, important events for Inca society.
The height of the monument makes it seem likely that the structure was important to the Incas, and was built at such height for a valuable reason.
One theory suggests that Machu Picchu was the last stop of a difficult pilgrimage the Incas took, which began in Cuzco and culminated at the top of the monument. It is difficult to imagine whether the site was built for this sole purpose or not, but a more intriguing idea is that the site itself is a reduced replica of a landscape described in the Inca religion.
Today, while hundreds of thousands of visitors cross the monument during a trip to Machu Picchu, that Inca citadel retains its magical sensation, and many travelers repeatedly describe the experience of their visit as spiritual.
UNESCO recognizes machu picchu
The importance of Machu Picchu has been officially recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site and was named one of the 7 New Wonders of the World in 2007.
The breathtaking views and scenery among the imposing mountains are the backdrop to many iconic travel photos.
The Peruvian government works hard to protect machu picchu from erosion with constant conservation measures.
Hopefully the charm of Machu Picchu will not diminish in the short term and, as we remember the mysterious Inca Empire that built this wonder.
Discover the beautiful Inca citadel with our trip to Machu Picchu and know all the sacred monuments.