The Ruins Of Machu Picchu
The Inca site of Machu Picchu is located some 2500 meters above the sea, on a mountain ridge just above the Urubamba Valley in Peru, 1200 kilometers from the capital city of the country, Lima. The place is supposed to be sacred; all constructed in honor for the Inca emperor Pachacuti and it is often named by the “Lost City of Incas”.
The history behind the ruins of Machu Picchu is very mysterious, but you can´t help thinking how it would be to live in this city when it was inhabited. Walking around it almost transports you to the greatest days of Inca civilization and makes you wonder how they lived, moved from a place to another, ate and other stuff like that.
The ruins of Machu Picchu must be visited in person in order to absorb the sheer magnitude and beauty of the place. The structures are every bit as spectacular as photos indicate, particularly in the quiet and peaceful dawn hours.
However, buses begin dropping tourists by the busload at the ruins, making the trek up and down the hill every 15 minutes or so. The ruins acquire a cartoonish feel with this onslaught of people, and the newly designed entry way, consisting of a visitor center with jewelry shops and concession stands only contributes to the theme park atmosphere.
However it is still possible to traverse the ruins in quiet, meditative solitude. Several “trails” are recommended in the map to the ruins, and you can hike the blue, red or yellow trail. The blue and red trails traverse the plaza and steep stone steps of the ruins, taking visitors to a tower, chambers and sun dial overlooking the main plaza.
They also cross the various granaries and meeting rooms in the massive complex and end in the steep amphitheater, the hallmark of the ruins.
Sleepy llamas bask in the sunshine on the grass lawns of one part of the plaza, and the trapezoidal windows decorating each stone room and the steep amphitheater steps create excellent photographing opportunities.
The yellow trail skirts the steep edges and steps of the complex and is hiked by very few. You may find yourself traversing the trail and at one point sitting on a terrace overlooking one portion of the ruins which had fallen into decay, accompanied only by fluffy, wild chinchillas scampering happily among the steps.
A portion of the trail leads to a series of steps going downhill to another entryway into the complex, there will be no many more people along this path. Several parts of the trail skirt dangerously along the edge of the ruins, and the hill surrounding the complex drops precipitously to the valley and river below.