The legendary ‘Lost City of Machu Picchu’ sits on a mountain site of an extraordinary beauty, in the middle of a tropical mountain forest , Machu Picchu (Old Peak).
It was probably the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height, with it giant walls, terraces and ramps, which appears as though they have been cut naturally in the continuous rock escarpments.
It was discovered only in 1911 by the American Yale professor Hiram Bingham. It is thought that the city was built around 1440, and was inhabited until the Spanish conquest of Peru in 1532.
Archaeological evidence shows that Machu Picchu was not a conventional city, but a country town for Inca nobility. The site has a large palace and temples dedicated to Inca deities around a courtyard, with other buildings for support staff.
It is estimated that a maximum of 750 people resided in Machu Picchu at any one time, and probably only a small fraction of that number lived in the town during the rainy season and when none of the nobility were visiting.
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