Machu Picchu is a pre-Columbian 15th-century Inca site located 2,430 metres above sea level. Machu Picchu is located in the Cusco Region of Peru, South America. It is situated on a mountain ridge above the Urubamba Valley in Peru. Most archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was built as an estate for the Inca emperor Pachacuti. Often referred to as the “Lost City of the Incas”, it is perhaps the most familiar icon of the Inca World.
The Incas started building the “estate” around 1400, but abandoned it as an official site for the Inca rulers a century later at the time of the Spanish Conquest. Although known locally, it was unknown to the outside world before being brought to international attention in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham. Since then, Machu Picchu has become an important tourist attraction. Most of the outlying buildings have been reconstructed in order to give tourists a better idea of what the structures originally looked like. By 1976, thirty percent of Machu Picchu had been restored. The restoration work continues to this day.
Machu Picchu was voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in a worldwide Internet poll.
Machu Picchu was built in the classical Inca style, with polished dry-stone walls. Its three primary structures are the Intihuatana, the Temple of the Sun, and the Room of the Three Windows. These are located in what is known by archaeologists as the Sacred District of Machu Picchu.
Though Machu Picchu is the most popular spot in Peru, you would be a little disappointed to know that there is no direct route from Lima, the capital of Peru to Machu Picchu. Once you landed in Lima, you need to reach Cusco, the old capital of Inca empire. The distance between these tow cities is more 700 miles. You can fly from Lima, or take a bus for a long difficult travel. Once you reach Cusco, you have to make another journey to reach Aguas Calientes, which is the closest city to Machu Picchu. Machu Picchu, the famous ruin is only few miles from Aguas Calientes. You can walk or take a bus to reach there.