Machu Picchu is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world. At least a million people visit every year. The amazing ramparts, gigantic inclines, terraces, and interconnecting stairs and trails give the impression that the archeological site was carved in the rocks’ escarpment as opposed to being built. Researchers believe that Machu Picchu may have been a resort built for the Inca elite. The site is located near the Vilcanota River and about 112.5 km northeast of Cusco City in Peru. Machu Picchu is regarded as one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
How was Machu Picchu Built?
Little is really known of how the remarkable city was built. However, research shows that the city was built around the 15th century. The Inca used a dry stone technique to build the numerous houses, temples, water fountains, food storage buildings, and a jail.
The primary building material is heavy granite stones. They are exceptionally hard to cut even with today’s modern tools. Therefore, it is difficult to explain the smooth, perfectly straight bricks that fit together so well that you cannot pass a knife through them.
It is believed that the Inca ruler Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui was behind the building of Machu Picchu. The city is about 2,500 meters above sea level. Consequently, this height enabled the Inca to observe what was happening in the Urubamba Valley below.
The Role of the Temples of Machu Picchu
One of the most notable structures is the Temple of the Sun. It may have served as a ritual altar. Additionally, priests used this temple to view the winter and summer solstices from windows strategically placed on the east and north sides. Also, you can see Principal Temple which, due to its size, is believed to have been the main temple in Machu Picchu.
If Machu Picchu tours in Peru are on your bucket list, Alpaca Expeditions will help make this dream a reality. Whether you want to get there by train or through the Inca trail treks, we have packages that will suit you. Contact us today!