Saqsaywaman is an archaeological site built by the Incas like Machu Picchu and in a similar style. It's included in the boleto turistico so for all of you budget travellers it should be a must. Although it's definitely not as popular or breath taking as Machu Picchu it's still well worth a look. It's really cool to go down the Inca slides, (which I will explain later) and to experience the shear size of the blocks used to build the ruins. It's believed that Saqsaywaman was built over 60 years by roughly 25,000 people, but obviously like a lot of Inca history, much of it is unknown and surrounded by mystery. All the photos below can be enlarged by just clicking on them.
Click the photos to increase the size, for a better look!
Some of the stones used to build the ruins at Saqsaywaman are huge, reaching 6 ft or more in some cases. It is crazy to think how they managed to build these ruins. The stones aren't held in place by any form of mortar which means that the Incas had to be incredibly precise with how they cut them. If they didn't fit together perfectly the wall would fall down. It's like a jigsaw, apart from the pieces are a bit heavier than normal.
These immensely heavy stones would have all been transported to their places and it's more than likely that some would have been transported up the hill that Saqsaywaman was built on. As it is very unlikely there was enough natural stone on the hill to build these incredible ruins.
As you walk around the archaeological site you will find there is more than just the walls built by the Incas. There are the Inca slides, the face of the jaguar, Muyuq Marak.... The Inca slides are a natural formation of volcanic rock that looks a bit like a wave from the sea. So don't be getting confused, surfers. They are so slippy that it's a bit hard to climb to the top and you definitely won't need a push. You will be at the bottom before you know it. I like the Inca slides because they are something completely different and natural.
Muyuq Marak was formally the temple of the sun. As it was positioned in the perfect place by the incas when it was built. However during the Spanish revolution it was destroyed. A lot of the stone was used to make the city that the temple once overlooked, Cusco. Now only the foundations of the temple can be seen, so tourists have to use thier imagination a bit!
Do you have any questions about Saksaywaman? Or any other tips? Please comment them below