Explore Magnificent World Heritage Site, Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu, Lost City of the Incas: Secrets and Fun Facts

Spartan and the Green Egg explorer pin

Machu Picchu: One of the New Seven Wonders of the World and a UNESCO World Heritage site, this Incan city is located above the Urubamba River Valley high in the Andes Mountains in Peru. Machu Picchu, often called the “Lost City of the Incas” was built in the 15th century and later abandoned. During the extraordinary construction of Machu Picchu, the Incas did not use animals, iron tools, or the wheel. It is said that hundreds of men were used to push the stones up steep mountains that are almost eight thousand feet above sea level. It is known for its brilliant engineering, intelligent astronomical alignments, and panoramic views.

Actually, “When the explorer Hiram Bingham III encountered Machu Picchu in 1911, he was looking for a different city, known as ‘Vilcabamba.’ This was a hidden capital to which the Inca had escaped after the Spanish conquistadors arrived in 1532.”

  • When it comes to archaeology, Machu Picchu is one of the most important sites in the world. It is known for its Temple of the Sun, ruins of palaces, plazas, and temples. The citadel (or fortress built on high ground) was so expertly built (without mortar) that the joins between its granite stones cannot be penetrated, even with a blade.
  • Machu Picchu is known as a historic sanctuary and evidence of the Inca Empire at its height of accomplishment. The ruins sit atop a high ridge complete with many peaks above the Urubamba River in Peru’s Andean Highlands.
  • It’s a mystery: because the Incas had no written language, there are no records of why this incredible city was built. There is also no evidence as to why it was abandoned.
  • Hidden high in the Andes Mountains, Machu Picchu is located near the Amazon River basin and is covered in tropical forests. It is one of the most popular sites in the world. And how does one get there? On foot, of course.

Hidden Secrets

  • Built on top of two fault lines, the ruins of Machu Picchu are said to move around when earthquakes hit, but, somehow, the stones remain intact.
  • Many of the secrets of the site are underground: it is thought that as much as 60% of the site was constructed beneath the ground.
  • The small green peak “Huayna Picchu” is one of the most popular pinnacles to climb but it’s not the only one: at the opposite end, there’s another peak commonly referred to as “Machu Picchu Mountain” that stands 1,640 feet tall. The bird’s eye views from these points are spectacular.

Don’t forget to collect the Spartan and the Green Egg Machu Picchu explorer pin and, while you’re at it, experience the amazing World Heritage Site without leaving the comfort of your home by taking a look at this SGE video: https://youtu.be/INa8B2i8McM

For more information on Machu Picchu, consult the websites mentioned on the blog:
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/travel/top-10/peru/machu-picchu/secrets/
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/travel/world-heritage/machu-picchu/
 

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