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Machu Picchu
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Machu Picchu the sacred city of the incas: 

Machu Picchu is one of the world’s most valuable historic jewels and is without doubt an icon representing the grandeur of these ancient Peruvians. The complex is located at the foot of a mountain called Machu Picchu, which in Quechua means “ancient hill”. Before it rises the majestic peak of Huaynapicchu (“young hill”). The river Vilcanota flows some 1,300 feet below.

Machu Picchu was built when the reign of Pachacutec was at its zenith, perhaps for recreational purposes and the cult of the emperor, although its exact function is not known for certain. There are two well-defined zones in the Inca citadel: the agricultural and the urban; separated, in turn, into a religious area and secular one. The urban area of the city, as with all Inca cities, is separated into two areas: Hanan and Urin, high and low. Each one of these parts is in turn subdivided into two, a rural and an urban zone. Most of the ceremonial buildings are found in the upper or Hanan zone.

The complex was discovered in 1911 by American expedition leader Hiram Bingham, whose name for his find had more to do with fantasy than scientific rigor. Even today, guides use the terms invented by Bingham, such as the “military fortress” the “king’s group”, “the temple of the three windows” or Intiwatana, although the exact purpose of these buildings has never been determined, thus contributing to the mystery of Machupicchu.

Today the diversity of people visiting Machupicchu makes it one of the most cosmopolitan places on earth. Ninety three years after its discovery, both the city and the Inca trail attract travelers from all over the planet. Currently more than 350 000 people visit the sanctuary aver year. For this reason, a visit to Machu Picchu should be not only an opportunity to make contact with an amazing natural and cultural testimony to humanity, but also a renewal of ones commitment towards a unique historical treasure.

THE INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU: 

Between the km 88 marker and the railroad linking Cusco with the village of Aguas Calientes, is a trek that is considered one of the most attractive routes on earth. This the Inca trail to Machupicchu, a pilgrimage for ancient Peruvians, which took them to the city of Machu Picchu. This trail, 28 miles long, was a way of reaching the Inca city which demanded great stamina on a path made of granite and quartz along which were buildings designed for different purposes (lodging, farming, meditation, worship, vigilance) as well as plants and animals; an incredible variation in climate, enchanting scenery, skies and atmospheric phenomena capable of making a man realize his own insignificance and, at the end, the magical, unforgettable sight of Machupicchu seen from above, silhouetted against the sky as tranquil as a cultural kingdom fully integrated with that of nature. In other words, a holistic, cosmic vision of the road, its destination and the environment.

Arriving at Machupicchu after walking the Inca trail cannot be compared with the road up from Aguas Calientes. proof of this is the fact that 70,000 travelers make the trek every year from Qoriwayrachina to the Sacred City and, with blistered feet and short of breath, feel that more than a simple tourist experience they have passed through something existential. 

ORCHIDS OF MACHU PICCHU : 

The missing orchids of the lost city of the Inca can still return. 

With more than 250 species registered in its forests, the Sanctuary of Machu picchu is an enormous botanical garden where the orchids are the stars. Their shapes and colors are a challenge to the imagination, from minuscule jewels of some millimeters of longitude, until big clusters several meters high. Because here there are many for all the likes. 

The orchids of Machu picchu have a promising future. Besides being object of fascination, these flowers can become an effective means to promote the conservation of the mountain forest, task in which we are committed. 

From 1988 a rescue center settled down for native plants in Machu Picchu, being its main objective the one of identifying, to classify and to reinsert the species more threatened in natural facilities where the tourists could appreciate them at the time that they acquired conscience of its importance, designing this way a network of trails to facilitate their visit, accompanied by local guides.


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