Kuelap – Another Machu Picchu

Posted in South America | May 24, 2011 | 0 Comments

Kuelap has been called the “Machu Picchu of north Peru”. The site is just as significant as the latter, and is the biggest collection of stone masonry in the entire South America.

Kuelap is a series of four hundred and fifty stone homes that overlook the Amazon basin. The site was built by a civilization that existed even prior to the Incan people. The exact time is about 800 AD. This makes the site older even than Machu Picchu.

Kuelap is situated in the department of Amazonas in the Gran Vilaya Valley, Chachapoyas. The area is blessed with a subtropical climate and eternal spring weather.

At the point just before the entry of the Amazon River into the Amazon River basin, the river has carved out a canyon that is of larger depth than the Grand Canyon. The climate has a number of similarities with the Machu Picchu, but the vegetation has not proved as destructive to the monument as it has done to Machu Picchu. The area is filled with sub tropical trees, bromeliads and orchids.

Previously, Kuelap was extremely inaccessible and took more than two months to hike to the site. The site has now become more accessible due to the newly buil roads between Choctamal and the ruins. Kuelap can be accessed in two days from Tarapoto or Chclayo.

A visit to Kuelap will also include a trip to the Gocta waterfall, which at 771 m high, is the 3 r d largest waterfall in the world.

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