The Lost City of Machu Picchu

The Lost City of Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu

The Lost City of Machu Picchu

The Lost City of Machu PicchuMachu Picchu is the lost city of the Inca from the 15th century, situated on the top of a mountain ridge, nearly 8,000 ft above sea level.  Machu Picchu is located in the Cusco RegionUrubamba Province, Machupicchu District in Peru, above the Sacred Valley, which is 80 kilometres (50 miles) northwest of Cuzco which the Urubamba River flows through.

Machu Picchu was constructed for an unknown reason around the year 1450 at the height of the Inca empire, but was abandoned less than a century later with the empire collapsing under Spanish conquest.

The lost city of Machu Picchu is one of the most famous lost cities in the world and was re-discovered in 1911 by a Hawaiian historian after it lay hidden for centuries.  The pre-Columbian Incan city, Machu Picchu, is otherwise known as the lost city of the Incas.  The city was designated as a world heritage site in 1983 when it was described as “an absolute masterpiece of architecture” and a unique testimony to the Inca civilization.

The lost city of Macchu Picchu is watered by natural springs, is invisible from below and completely self-contained.  Over the centuries, the jungle spread across the city, claiming it as its own.

The Lost City of Machu PicchuMany have speculated as to what the reason for building the city was and what it was used for, as well as why the Incas chose to build it such a remote, hidden, and somewhat strange location.  Some theorize it is a holy temple while others claim it was a prison, hidden high in the mountains.  The leading theory is that it was build to be a secluded royal retreat for the Inca emperor, Pachacuti.

There have been numerous documentaries and travel shows showcasing this magnificent site, most recently the hit TV show An Idiot Abroad: Season 1, where Ricky Gervais and Steve Merchant send their “friend”, Karl Pilkington, to explore the seven wonders of the world.  In the 6th episode of the show, he visits Machu Picchu, it’s hilarious as well as informative, we’d recommend checking it out.  Many other shows and books have covered the incredible city.  And although we may never know exactly why it was built, we can enjoy the beauty of the magnificent place.

Have you ever visited Machu Picchu in Peru?  What do you think it was built for in the 13th century?  Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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The Lost City of Machu Picchu