Machu Picchu - Peru's Archaeological Jewel

Started May 12, 2008 | Discussions thread
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Joe Josephs
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Machu Picchu - Peru's Archaeological Jewel
May 12, 2008

Machu Picchu was constructed around 1450, at the height of the Inca empire, and was abandoned less than 100 years later, as the empire collapsed under Spanish conquest. Although the citadel is located only about 50 miles from Cusco, the Inca capital, it was never found and destroyed by the Spanish, as were many other Inca sites. Over the centuries, the surrounding jungle grew to enshroud the site, and few knew of its existence. It wasn’t until 1911 that Yale historian and explorer Hiram Bingham brought the “lost” city to the world’s attention. Bingham and others hypothesized that the citadel was the traditional birthplace of the Inca people or the spiritual center of the “virgins of the sun,” while curators of a recent exhibit have speculated that Machu Picchu was a royal retreat. Regardless, the presence of numerous temples and ritual structures proves that Machu Picchu held spiritual significance for the Inca.
[source - http://www.sacredland.org/world_sites_pages/M_Picchu.html]

Difficult to describe the emotional impact upon first viewing the ruins at Machu Picchu. After paying the 40.00 USD entrance fee you enter a historical time machine - one of the most frequented (and photographed) sites on our planet. Due to the high altitude (8000 feet at Machu Picchu, 12,500 at Chinchero near Cusco), my photo kit contained two items - the D300 and the new 16-85 VR. Would have loved to shoot with my 14-24, 24-70 & Gitzo/RRS - but I'll leave that to shooters hardier than me.

Enjoy & cc always welcome
joe

Andes Meadow approaching Machu Picchu

Two Frame Photo Merge In Machu Picchu Facing southwest

The Classic MP Shot

Within Machu Picchu - Terraced Amphitheater visible mid-left

Mount Machu Picchu Through an Inca Arch

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