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8 IMPRESSIVE INCA RUINS ALONG THE INCA TRAIL TO MACHUPICCHU

8 IMPRESSIVE INCA RUINS ALONG THE INCA TRAIL TO MACHUPICCHU

8_impressive_inca_ruins-in-the-inca-trail

The great inca trail not only takes you to discover one of the 7 wonders of the world, as well it allows you to visit a variety of Inca ruins that were hidden beneath the lush vegetation for many years.

Therefore, travel and tourism magazines, such as National Geographic and the British magazine Wanderlust consider the Classic Inca trail and Short Inca Trail as two of the best trekking journeys in the world.

Now, you will get to know the inca ruins that embellish the unforgettable inca trail hike.

Both inca trail options boast impressive andean remains!

Inca ruins

Inca ruins only through the Classic Inca Trail:

1. Llactapata:

This is one of the inca archaeological sites features sacred squares, stone stairs, water channels, storehouses, and many other structures.

You could visit it just after beginning the classic inca trail. By the way, this Inca jewel has an impressive drainage system that allowed watering the long agricultural terraces. Therefore, it was an Andean settlement located at the base of a large mountain within the inca trail to machu picchu.

llactapata

2. Runkuracay:

It is one of the most enigmatic inca ruins throughou the inca trail. Because there is a rounded stone building (you can also appreciate this kind of special structure through our cusco city walking tour) that boasts a wide square and more constructions around.

As well, Runkuracay‘s inca ruins feat trapezoidal gates, windows and niches to avoid the collapse of the structures that served like tambos (lodging houses) or checkpoint for people who used to walk the inca trail.

runkuracay

3. Sayacmarka:

Due to its location (on top of the hill), this large archaeological complex might have been a control site for the inca trail to Machu Picchu. Moreover, there is only one passageway in the middle of the whole building.

This exclusive touristic attraction on the classic inca trail features finely carved stone structures, meaning that the people who lived here were probably part of Inca royalty.

sayacmarca

4. Phuyupatamarka:

This set of Inca ruins is located 5 kilometers away from the previous one (through the inca trail) and boasts a flat-topped pyramid shape, surrounded by terraces.

Owing to there are three squares, ceremonial water channels, an impressive sacred stone and only two main gates inside Phuyupatamarka, archaeologists consider it to be a religious building.

From here, you can also see the Vilcanota River!

phuyupatamarka

5. Intipata:

One of the best samples of hydraulic engineering throughout the classic inca trail.

Due to its irrigation system, the rainwater and natural water sources were used to feed the irrigation channels and improve the agricultural development.

You will visit this ancestral place on the third day of the inca trail hike!

Intipata

Only through the Short Inca Trail:

1. Chachabamba:

These inca ruins are located next to the Vilcanota River, 10 minute away from the entrance gate of the short inca trail.

During the Inca period, only privileged people could get to Machu Picchu, because it is a special place. Therefore, before arriving there, people used to stop at Chachabamba to take a spiritual bath in the sacred water fountains.

Consequently, these inca ruins seem to have been a ceremonial building, where the huaca (Andean temple) and water fountains played a relevant role.

Summarizing, Chachabamba was the most important site amongst the satellite towns of Machu Picchu citadel.

Chachabamba

Through both Inca Trail programs:

1. Wiñaywayna:

Its name is due to a variety of orchid that exists in the surroundings, which is called wiñaywayna and in English could be translated as “forever young”.

It is a small multifunctional settlement of inca ruins near Machu Picchu that boast several terraces with well-carved water fountains. As well, in the top of the inca archaeological site there is a rounded square surrounded by many sacred constructions.

If you take the short inca trail, you could feel the quiet and natural environment of this place!

wiñaywayna

2. Intipunku

The last inca archaeological site on the inca trail hike to Machu Picchu (less than 1 kilometer away).

The “Gate of the Sun” is the main gateway to Machupicchu as well as it is the best spot for pictures of the Historical sanctuary. Meanwhile if you book the classic inca trail, you could see the sunrise at this place and in the background the impressive Machupicchu.

sun_gate

There are many more wonders throughout the inca trail and we know how to reach them. If you want to be part of our Inca Trail tours, you only need to contact us.