Machu Picchu was discovered by American anthropologist and historian Hiram Bingham in 1911. Archaeologists estimate that this city was built in the mid-fifteenth century. Today there are many hypotheses about the role attributed to this city was inaccessible. For Mr. Hiram Bingham This secret city was dedicated to virgins (chosen women) from the sun in the service of the Inca. The city was built around 1450, according to a theory on the orders of the Inca ruler Pachacutec Yupanqui, who ruled from 1438 to 1471. He laid the foundations for the expansion of the mighty Inca empire and led the cult of the sun god Inti one. The town consisted of 216 stone buildings, on the terraces were located and connected to a system of stairways. Most terraces are preserved with their built into the walls of small drainage holes and 3,000 levels as well today as the channel connecting the located outside the city facility water source to the cascading tiered fountain and the outer walls of the temple and some multi-storey residential buildings, fully functional and, if necessary been reconstructed in recent years gradually in typical Inca structure.
The research is now believed that the city could house in its heyday supply up to 1,000 people and events. The plant, whose original name is unknown, was named after a nearby mountain peaks, between which lies the ruined city. Parts of the city and used for farming terraces lie at the foot of the “old peak”. Behind her stands the other end of the “young peak” (Huayna Picchu) sugarloaf-shaped in the sky, on which there is also a small plant, which was accessible from the town over a small mountain path, and is. In the southeast lie about 15 kilometers away in the Urubamba Valley in the immediate vicinity of rivers, the ruins of the Inca city of Llactapata . Both settlements are still very much associated with the Inca Trail.
About the meaning and purpose of this city several theories have been developed. In fact, they exist no traditions or academic records, so on the basis of archaeological discoveries can be made more or less educated guesses. In the city system were in their early research on more than 50 graves with more than 100 skeletons found, the first class it is more than 80 percent female. Recent studies however have shown an even distribution of the sexes. Based on this discovery, the theory arose from a royal and religious refuge of the Incas, in addition to the Regent, not only the virgins of the sun but even in the absence of the king and his baggage , always opposite-sex other officials were staying. Since the plant after the outbreak of civil war in the Inca empire under Huayna Capac was supposedly no longer visited by an Inca king, who lived there had servants abandoned the city now become useless system later.
According to another theory is believed to have times of the Spanish conquest, Machu Picchu still been in the building. Accordingly the construction as a result of the conquest of the Inca empire by the Spaniards continued to leave the facility has been rocked by the Indians and then forgotten. The archaeological findings can not confirm the assumption of a still in the building located city, however. He bears witness to a large extent developed and once fully operational city where people lived for long periods. It has, for example, a still fully functioning water supply system and a proper rain water drainage structure, which is, apart from visible drain holes in the terrace walls, mostly hidden in the sub-floor terrace.