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Dwellings Higher Than Machu Picchu

Remains of an ancient city, situated 1,500mt higher than Machu Picchu, have been discovered on the top of the Andes Mountains in Peru!
Archaeologists Thomas Hardy and Adan Choqque Arce, and explorer Albert Linn recently discovered the pre-Inca city with the help of new drone, light detection, laser and ranging technology. As the ancient city is located in an area – called Wat’a (meaning Island in the local Indigenous language), and sitting at an altitude of almost 4,000mt, archaeologists have wondered how people could live at such a high altitude!

Ancient Inca city in Peruvian Andes.jpg
Ancient Inca city in Peruvian Andes

Hardy said that scientists had made an attempt to explore the region by using traditional archaeological methods in the past. This time, according to the Archaeologist, Light Detection and Ranging (Lidar) Technology has been used to identify the signature Inca terracing and pre-Inca structures. Lidar is, basically, a remote sensing method that helps examine the surface of the Earth. The archaeologists used drones and laser light to see beyond the thick flora, covering the Andes mountain-top, and then used the data to create a detailed 3D-map of the region. This method allowed them to reveal both Inca terraces and circular structures common to the pre-Inca civilisation.
Hardy explained that it is difficult to reach Wat’a, where one could find no big trees! As the top of the hill is filled with bushes, it’s really painful to tolerate the Sunlight there. For his part, Linn stressed: “It is very challenging to get there. You’re at around 13,000ft of elevation and its mostly open landscape because there’s not a lot of trees around, so you’re basically baking in the high altitude sun, all the way up.


Meanwhile, Hardy, Arce and Linn have found the ruins of pillars, living rooms and huge walls in that area. They are of the opinion that the Incas used to live here before setting up their capital in Machu Picchu. That is why the archaeologists consider this newly-discovered ancient city as the symbol of pre-Inca civilisation! However, they are yet to trace the exact age of this city…
Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui (1438-1471) – the ninth Sapa Inca of the Kingdom of Cusco which he transformed into the Inca Empire – had built the city of Machu Picchu in 1450. Noted American historian Hiram Bingham brought this 15th Century Inca citadel located in the Eastern Cordillera of southern Peru, on a 2,430mt mountain ridge, to global attention in 1911. Later, researchers revealed that the Incas had abandoned the city after staying there for just 80 years. According to researchers, the Incas left Machu Piccu after Chickenpox, also known as Varicella, had claimed many lives there. Once, only 750 people lived in Machu Piccu. Now, the researchers try to find why the ancient people abandoned Wat’a.

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