The Incas have made their presence prevail through time in such a way that we are still shortened in words while trying to describe their legacy. In addition to the most renowned settlements of the civilization, there are even more hidden gems in the vast Cusqueñan lands, and one of them is the Huchuy Qosqo ruins.
The Inca culture is recognized for its ancient temples, citadels, and fortresses that add a great historical value to our country. Huchuy Qosqo, for example, was an important precinct located in a not-so-remote location full of mysteries and spellbinding landscapes.
Unlike most of the severely dismantled archeological sites by the Spaniards, we’ve found more information about these pre-Columbian remains that help us uncover another side of the Inca history, where the Viracocha Emperor may have used his influence to build a royal residence looking for tranquility and peace of mind.
However, as most of the stories written by some chroniclers, these could be just speculations that somehow give meaning to the lost-in-war structures that we have today. Luckily, evidence has potentially confirmed that the Huchuy Qosqo site was in fact owned by the monarch, Viracocha.
Nevertheless, we want to give you all the information gathered thanks to our local expert team, who have studied these Inca ruins and many others to provide the best information during your trip. Keep reading and uncover the secrets involved in Huchuy Qosqo and the whole Cusco region.
According to archeologists, Huchuy Qosqo was built between the 1000 and 1400 A.D. by the order of the Inca Viracocha. Apparently, the site was known with a different name during Inca times. Some historians say that it was called Qaqyaxaqixawana or Qaqyaqhawana, which means “from where the lightning is observed.”
That fact could be actually correct since the region offers a great view to the famous Sacred Valley of the Incas. Therefore, the denomination could make reference to the electrical storms that hit the valley, which are seen from above. Nowadays, it is widely known as Huchuy Qosqo, which can be interpreted as “Little Cusco.”
Further excavations have shown that the ruins are found in a place that was previously occupied by other native civilizations that the Incas later incorporated into their growing empire. However, due to its architectural style, we can say that the structures we know today are entirely made by the Incas .
As many archeological sites, the ruins of Huchuy Qosqo are considered another example of their extensive engineering knowledge since they managed to integrate the construction with the beautiful surrounding landscape by modifying the terrain with terraces that also served as agricultural areas for the production of maize.
Likewise, they used lithic material combined with adobe and mud in their structures, which made them resistant to the ever changing climate conditions and seismic activity. Also, the Incas took advantage of the fertility of the lands and built several "Colcas," a type of warehouses used to store and preserve food.
Although many theories point it out as a royal state, Huchuy Qosqo could also have a military and administrative purpose due to how it was structured and its strategic position near the Pisac Archeological Site.
One of the most validated theories claims that the Inca Viracocha had such an emotional attachment to these lands that he demanded the construction of the site.
Theory that can be confirmed since the Spanish conqueror, Gonzalo Pizarro, found the emperor's remains in this site and ordered to burn it. Later, the descendants of the Inca retrieved the ashes and saved them in a ceramic jar, which many years later was discovered by the chronicler Polo de Ondegardo.
Huchuy Qosqo is located 50 kilometers north of Cusco at 3,600 meters above sea level. It is situated near the town of Lamay, a small town belonging to the Calca district. The archeological site is easily accessible from Tambomachay, Chinchero, and Lamay.
The Huchuy Qosqo trek can last for two days and one night, one day, or even a few hours depending on the type of travel experience you’d like to have. However, we highly recommend taking a guided tour to this place since getting there may be confusing if you aren’t a local expert.
The highest point of the 2-day trek supasses the 4,000 meters of elevation, which is why we advise you to acclimate properly before committing to this physically demanding activity. Luckily, we have the perfect excursion for you starting from the famous Tambomachay Archeological Site.
Venture out to the Peruvian wilderness and cross all the way to the Sacred Valley of the Incas to see the outstanding structure of Huchuy Qosqo on a 2-day trek! For more information, please contact your travel agent.
Importante Note: The Huchuy Qosqo is open all year long and an entrance fee isn’t required to enter the site.
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