+51 918 885 164 info@happygringotours.com
+51 918 885 164 info@happygringotours.com

Pikillaqta: a Sacred Place in the South Valley

Peru is home to many incredible archaeological sites that offer a glimpse into the rich history of the Andean region. One such site is Pikillaqta, an ancient city located in the South Valley of Cusco. Pikillaqta is a remarkable example of the Wari civilization. This civilization flourished in the Andes Mountains before the advent of the Inca Empire. 

This well-preserved site provides valuable insights into the architecture, society, and culture of the Wari people. It also sheds some light about their interactions with neighboring civilizations. In this article, we will delve into the fascinating history of the Wari people and Pikillaqta, and the cultural significance of the site. Whether you are a history buff or simply curious about the ancient world, Pikillaqta is a fascinating destination that should not be missed.

Who built Pikillaqta?

Pikillaqta was built by the mysterious Wari Empire. The Wari Empire was a pre-Columbian civilization that flourished in what is now Peru between the 7th and 13th centuries. The empire was centered in the city of Wari, near the modern city of Ayacucho. The Wari influence extended over much of the central Andes.

The Wari were known for their advanced engineering skills, including the creation of intricate irrigation systems and stone masonry. They also had a complex social and political structure. Thus, the Wari had a ruling class that oversaw a system of provincial governors and administrators.

The empire’s decline is still somewhat of a mystery. However, it is thought to have been brought on by a combination of environmental factors, internal conflict, and external pressures from neighboring civilizations such as the Tiwanaku. The Wari had a relatively short duration. However, this empire had a significant impact on the region. Thus, it helped to shape the cultural and political landscape of pre-Columbian Peru.

Pikillaqta: a Sacred Place in the South Valley

History of Pikillaqta

Historians believe that Pikillaqta was built in the final decades of the 6th century by the Wari people. The city was occupied for around 100 years. Additionally, Pikillaqta reached its greatest importance between 700 and 800 AD. During this period, many artisans and workers lived in Pikillaqta and kept the city alive. The city was supplied with water by an intricate system of underground water canals. This is a remarkable feat of engineering that demonstrates the advanced skills of the Wari people.

Pikillaqta was an administrative center of the Wari Empire. Thus, it had a dual function as both a ceremonial and residential center, where rulers and priests lived. It also was an industrial hub where workers of various specialties were at the service of those in power. The occupation of Pikillaqta ceased around the 9th century AD, during the beginning of the collapse of the Wari Empire. 

Today, Pikillaqta is an important archaeological site. It provides insights into the history, culture, and engineering skills of the Wari people. The preservation and study of the site are essential for understanding the legacy of this pre-Columbian civilization and the region’s history as a whole.

Pikillaqta: a Sacred Place in the South Valley

Cultural significance of the site

Pikillaqta holds great cultural significance for the region and the world. Built during the height of the Wari Empire, this ancient city provides insight into the lives and culture of the Wari people.

The intricate stone masonry, irrigation systems, and sophisticated underground water canals at Pikillaqta demonstrate the remarkable architectural and engineering skills of the Wari people. These feats of engineering are a testament to the importance of water in their society, as well as their connection to the natural world.

The site’s layout also offers insight into the Wari’s social and political structures. The city’s dual function as a ceremonial and residential center, as well as an industrial hub, speaks to the complexity of their society.

In recent years, Pikillaqta has become a popular tourist destination for those interested in exploring the ancient ruins of the Wari civilization. Visitors can take guided tours to the archaeological site. Once there, they can admire the remains of ceremonial buildings, administrative structures, and residential areas.

The site is also home to a number of interesting artifacts. Among these artifacts are pottery, textiles, and metal objects that offer insight into the daily life and cultural practices of the Wari people. Many of these artifacts are on display at the on-site museum. This museum provides a fascinating glimpse into the history of the Andean region.

Beyond its historical and cultural significance, Pikillaqta is also known for its stunning natural beauty. The surrounding landscape is characterized by rugged mountains, verdant valleys, and clear blue skies, making it an ideal destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

If you want to learn more about the rich history of Cusco, check our tours to Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail

Pikillaqta: a Sacred Place in the South Valley

About the author

Happy Gringo Tours

Why Book With Us?

  • No-hassle best price guarantee
  • Customer care available 24/7
  • Hand-picked Tours & Activities
  • Free Travel Insureance
Happy Gringo

Get a Question?

Do not hesitate to give us a call. We are an expert team and we are happy to talk to you.

+51 918 885 164