The Top Inca Ruins to Visit on the Inca Quarry Trail
Pumamarca, meaning “Puma City,” is an archaeological complex located at 3,400 meters above sea level, about 7 kilometers from Ollantaytambo. Here, you can find a series of agricultural terraces arranged in steps or platforms, which were used to grow corn, beans, and other crops. The site also includes a complex of buildings, including houses, baths, and temples, which were used for religious and administrative purposes. In addition to offering stunning views of the Sacred Valley, Pumamarca features some of the most impressive examples of Inca engineering, with its impressive stonework and water channels that still supply water to the terraces today.
Kachiqata Quarry, located at 3,800 meters above sea level, is an ancient Inca quarry that was used to extract the pink granite used to build Ollantaytambo and other important Inca sites in the region. Here, you can see unfinished granite blocks scattered across the quarry, some of which weigh up to 40 tons. You can also see the oroya, a wooden ramp that was used to slide the blocks down from the quarry to the river below, where they were transported to their final destinations. Kachiqata offers a unique glimpse into the Inca empire’s vast building projects and the sophisticated construction techniques used to create them.
Inti Punku, meaning “Sun Gate,” is a ceremonial entrance to the walled complex of Ollantaytambo. Located at an altitude of 2,720 meters above sea level, it offers magnificent views of the Ollantaytambo fortress and the surrounding mountains. Visitors to Inti Punku must climb about 50 meters up a steep and winding staircase, but the effort is well worth it, as it allows for an intimate encounter with one of the most important Inca structures in the region. According to legend, the Sun Gate marked the entrance to the Sacred Valley and was a place of great spiritual importance for the Inca people.
Choquequilla, meaning “Golden Cradle,” is a small Inca complex located in the Cusco region. It is believed that this site was once a functioning Inca astronomical and agricultural center. Choquequilla features impressive stonework, including a distinctive tower made of finely cut stones. It is also believed that the site was used to mark the equinoxes and solstices and that the tower was used to observe the stars and other celestial bodies. Although small compared to other Inca sites, Choquequilla is an impressive example of Inca engineering and astronomical knowledge.
Perolniyoc Waterfall is a spectacular waterfall located just a short hike from Ollantaytambo. The hike to the waterfall takes about 1.5 hours and involves a steep climb up a staircase with stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. At the end of the hike, visitors are rewarded with a breathtaking view of the 60-meter waterfall cascading down the sheer cliffs into the valley below. The waterfall was an important source of water for the Inca people and is still considered a sacred site by the local communities. Visitors to Perolniyoc can also take a refreshing swim in the crystal-clear pool at the base of the waterfall, making it a great spot to cool off after a long day of exploring the Inca Quarry Trail. If you wish to learn more about the topic, Inca Quarry Trail https://kawsayperutravel.com/tour/Inca-quarry-trail-to-machu-Picchu-inca-Quarry-trek/, to enhance your study. Uncover worthwhile insights and fresh perspectives!
The Inca Quarry Trail offers visitors a unique glimpse into the world of the Inca empire, with its impressive examples of stonework, agricultural terraces, and ceremonial sites. Pumamarca, Kachiqata Quarry, Inti Punku, Choquequilla, and Perolniyoc Waterfall are just a few of the many Inca ruins and natural wonders that can be found along the trail. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or just someone looking for an adventure, the Inca Quarry Trail has something for everyone.
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