Monday, December 26, 2011

Sayaqmarka Ruins on the Inca Trek, Day Three

Saycamarca--“Inaccessible Town”--lies at 3,600 meters above sea level, on the tip of a very prominent ridge. It’s the location that earned the town its name: from three sides it’s protected by sheer cliffs, and it can only be accessed from the fourth side by a steep staircase of 98 steps edged in the mountain. Seeing those beautiful ruins placed in a seemingly inaccessible location made me wonder if the Inca had built this town just to prove that they could.

My theory is as good as the one presented by archeologists and historians who investigated the ruins. They also have no clue. They speculate that Saycamarca simply served as a rest-stop town on a way to Machu Picchu. But I don’t think that’s the whole story. Why would the Inca go through so much trouble to build a rest stop in such an inaccessible place? And why would they build a Temple of the Sun (a solar observation post) in that town? Let’s hope that archeologists will figure it out.