Friday, September 4, 2015
Monday August 31, 2015
"Machu Picchu is a trip to the serenity of the soul, to the eternal fusion with the cosmos; where we feel our fragility. It is one of the greatest marvels of South America. A resting place of butterflies in the epicentre of the great circle of life. One more miracle." - Pablo Neruda, The Heights of Machu Picchu.
The Lost City is one of the world's major archaeological travel destinations and was named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007. Built around 1450 in classical Inca style, it was abandoned after the Spanish Conquest. The structure is 60% original work, 40% restoration.
Hiram Bingham was an American historian who lectured at Yale University. He came across Machu Picchu in 1911 while he was searching for the lost city of Vitcos, the capital of the Incas. Bingham returned to Machu Picchu in 1912 with sponsorship from Yale and undertook a four month clearing of the site.
It is theorized based on remains found at the site, that Machu Picchu was a place of education and worship. Sacrifices were made to the Gods for good harvests and prosperity.
We had a great day exploring the ruins, and then climbing up Wayna Picchu, the prominent mountain behind us in the pictures.
We caught a 3pm train back to Ollantaytambo, then a van back to Cuzco. We ate pizza for dinner that wasn't half bad and slept very soundly.