INFORMATION OF MACHU PICCHU
Machupicchu is located 112.5 km Northeast of Cusco at 2,350 meters above sea level within what is now the Machupicchu Archaeological Park, itself in the province of Urubamba in the department of Cusco.
The park stretches across 32,592 ha. on the eastern slopes of the Vilcabamba mountain range between the Apurimac and Urubamba rivers, and is protected by Supreme Decree Nº 001-81-AA of January 8, 1,981;
To build the city, the ancient Peruvians made the best use of the narrow outcrop and sides of a rock plateau of volcanic origin which stretches across more than 100 square kilometers.
The climate in the area is mild, with temperatures never dipping below 13º C.
The Discovery of Machupicchu
In July 1,911, Hiram Bingham, after a great deal of patient research, discovered Machupicchu. The find was to turn out to be a veritable jewel of architecture, built by the incas and hidden for more than four centuries and protected by the thick jungle of the Urubamba canyon.
The sixteenth-century chronicles make no mention of Machupicchu, and it is peculiar that the city was not destroyed by the Spanish Conquerors in their campaign to snuff all traces of the Indians’ idols. It is stranger still that such a major citadel could lie forgotten for centuries. Most explanations are based on the hypothesis that the spaniards never found Machupicchu for several reasons, one of them being the rugged country the site lies in.
Before Machupicchu came to light, it reportedly belonged to the Qollapani and Kutija before belonging to the Q`ente ranch. It is unlikely that the owners explored the entire site because the area was so wild. People did indeed know of the site and even lived inside it, but had little idea of its importance and still less inclination of letting the world know.
As in all discoveries, Machupicchu was previously visited by hardy explorers drawn by tales of gold treasures in the region and who faced the dangers of the dense forest, wild animals and Indian tribes as well as the inaccessible nature of the region.
Researcher Simone Waisbard, in his book Machupicchu, claims Enrique Palma and Gabino Sánchez were taken to the site by Agustín Lizarraga, who left an inscription there dated July 14, 1,901. They found that an Indian called Anacleto Alvarez had been living there for eight years, sowing fields which he rented for 12 soles a year.