Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu (1983)

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United Nations (Geneva) 2007. Macchu Pichu.

Machu Picchu stands 2,430 m above sea-level, in the middle of a tropical mountain forest, in an extraordinarily beautiful setting. 

It was probably the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height; its giant walls, terraces and ramps seem as if they have been cut naturally in the continuous rock escarpments. 

  • United Nations (Geneva) 2007. Macchu Pichu. 
The natural setting, on the eastern slopes of the Andes, encompasses the upper Amazon basin with its rich diversity of flora and fauna. 
  • Peru 1974. Air Post. Machu Picchu. 
  • Peru 1980. Promoting Tourism. Machu Picchu. 
Peru 1974. Air Post. Machu Picchu. Peru 1980. Promoting Tourism. Machu Picchu.

Machu Picchu is a pre-Columbian Inca stronghold in the Andes, about 80 km (about 50 mi) northwest of Cuzco, Peru. Located at a high altitude on a ridge between two peaks, about 600 m (about 1950 ft) above the Urubamba River, the ruined city covers about 13 sq km (about 5 sq mi) of terraces built around a central plaza and linked by numerous stairways. 

Peru 2004. Machu Picchu. Sun Clock. Peru 2004. Machu Picchu. Temple of the Three Windows. Peru 2004. Machu Picchu. Cataract of Machu Picchu. Peru 2004. The city (Ciudadela) of Machu Picchu.
Peru 1987. Commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Discovery of Machu Picchu. Peru 2000. Machu Picchu.

The majority of buildings are one-room stone houses (now roofless), arranged around internal courts; some larger structures were evidently used for religious purposes. All are distinguished by engineering skill and fine craftsmanship. 

  • Peru 1987. Commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Discovery of Machu Picchu.

  • Peru 2000. Machu Picchu. 

The city was discovered in 1911 by the American explorer Hiram Bingham; it is not mentioned in the writings of the Spanish conquerors of Peru, and the time of its occupancy is uncertain. Bingham believed that Machu Picchu might have been the last refuge of Incas from Cuzco fleeing the Spanish invaders, but nothing is actually known of its history. 

Sources and links: 

Other World Cultural Heritage Properties in Peru (on this web site). Please refer to the UNESCO-listing, Peru-section. for more information about the individual properties. 

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Revised 21 aug 2007  
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