Located on the mountain edge over the Urubamba Valley of Peru, Machu Picchu is the only Inca site that remained unblemished at the time of the Spanish conquest. It is pre-Columbian Inca site that is famous as the Lost Inca City across the globe, as it was never known to the outside world surprisingly since its existence. This Machu Picchu fact has saved it from the invasions due to which the structure remains intact even today.
Among the most deserving facts Machu Picchu, this ancient civilization was ranked as the Seven Wonders of the World via online and telephonic calls. However, it was first declared as a Peruvian History Sanctuary in 1981 that included the ruins and the surrounding regions rich in flora and fauna. Next, it was then designated as the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983.
The Incas constructed the city around 1450, which was full of life only for 100 years after which it was abandoned as a formal site of the Inca rulers during the Spanish invasion. Surprisingly, even the Spanish folk did not know about the city and that with the passage of time, the city got hidden under the forest. It was only in 1911 that the American historian Hiram Bingham brought it into the focus to some scholars with the help of Quechuas living in Machu Picchu. However, it gained popularity only after the coverage of the National Geographic Society in April 1913.
Architectural and Layout Facts
The ruins are divided into two main areas namely, Urban Sector and Agricultural Sector through a wall. Not only this, the urban sector seems to be again divided into three areas: the Sacred District, the Popular District to the south, and the District of the Priests and the Nobility. Further the Upper and Lower sectors form the Agricultural Sector.
The architectural facts Machu Picchu reveal that the buildings were created in the classical Inca style with elegant dry-stone walls. The Incas were great masons to build earthquake-protective edifices. The inhabitants had great expertise in the ashlar art in which the stone blocks are sliced to join each other in such a way that no mortar was used to do so and that such a technique would help in enduring earthquakes. Not only this, but the walls were also made in such a way to withstand themselves during the seismic shakes. Talking about the doors and windows, they are trapezoidal in shape with round corners.
According to the survey of structural facts Machu Picchu, there are some 140 structures including temples, sanctuaries, parks, and homes of thatched roofs. The fact that the irrigation system of fountains and channels supplying water to the houses were fed from a holy spring speaks about the sacred significance of the place.
As a matter of religious beliefs, it is said that the Incas purposely chose this site because of its relative locations amidst the sacred landscape of mountains and other astronomical events as believed by them. This astronomical event’s evidence is given by its most amazing structure – the Intihuatana rock, which is an astronomic clock that points straight at the sun on winter solstice in the Sacred District of Machu Picchu. Be here at 12 noon on March 21 and September 21 when the sun is exactly above the rock casting no shadow. This is a fact that we have to accept that the Incas were quite intelligent and scientific in their approach. The name Intihuatana means “The Hitching Post of the Sun” signifying the purpose of such marvel.
Other notable structures include the Temple of Sun dedicated to their sun God – Inti, the Room of the Three Windows, and Monumental Mausoleum for rituals.
Other stunning sign is their road system that includes an Inca road to the Machu Picchu region. It is a fact that this trail is now used by thousands of tourists to visit Machu Picchu.