Machu Picchu, two




lost abandon hide/hid/hidden
atop discover Seven Wonders of the World
world wonder around (2)
height construct represent (2)
level (2) provide great/greater/greatest
site religious civilization
tropical sea level strand/stood/stood (2)
vote terrace made up of
step (2) abandon make/made/made
temple structure attraction
tomb damage astronomical
plaza landslide build/built/built
palace emperor foot/feet (2)
retreat worship sophisticated
hustle point (3) hustle and bustle
well (2) hillside write/wrote/written
plan double desert (2)
detail heritage achievement
duty stabilize believe (2)
land erosion channel (3)
stone available spring (3)
ensure fresh (2) fresh water
clean to place hundreds of thousands
iron construct hold/held/held
fit (3) mortar(2) observatory
blade move (2) overtake (2)
lack protect knife/knives
allow structure earthquake
clever inhabit fit together
cloud evidence archaeology
sick conquer find/found/found
flat (3) possible settlement
declare smallpox bring/brought/brought
jungle slightly hide/hid/hidden
pass sensation wide/wider/widest
flock fountain approximately
shape preserve unparalleled
design force (2) for the most part






It’s been called the Lost City of the Incas. Machu Picchu, hidden atop a mountain in the Andes Mountains of Peru, lay abandoned for centuries before its rediscovery in 1911.

Today, Machu Picchu has been voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.

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Machu Picchu was constructed at the height of the Inca Empire, some time around 1450, and represents one of the greatest achievements of architecture and engineering in the history of the Inca civilization.

It stands 7,970 feet, or 2,430 meters above sea level, in the middle of a tropical mountain forest.

The site is made of up more than 600 terraces and over 3,000 stone steps, with approximately 200 structures including temples, tombs, palaces, plazas, fountains, and even an astronomical observatory.

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Archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was built for the Inca emperor, as a religious site high in the mountains that the Inca worshiped, but also as a retreat from the hustle and bustle of the capital city, Cusco, only 50 miles or 80 kilometers away.

At one point, between 500 and 1,000 people likely lived there. Although the Inca had no written language, the city they built was well-planned and very sophisticated.

They constructed terraces on the hillsides, a detail which served the double duty of providing flat land for farming and stabilizing the mountainside to guard against erosion and landslides.

They channeled water from mountain springs into stone-lined canals that fed a series of fountains down the levels of the city, ensuring that clean fresh water was available to all.

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The city was built using hundreds of thousands of stones: for the most part, placed without any kind of mortar holding them together, and all shaped without the use of iron tools.

Despite this, the stones fit together so well that 500 years later, you can’t fit a knife blade between them. The lack of mortar allows the stones to move slightly, protecting the structures from earthquake damage.

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Although Machu Picchu was cleverly designed, it was not inhabited for very long. Just over 100 years after its construction, the Inca city in the clouds began to be deserted.

Archaeologists do not know exactly what caused the Inca to leave their mountain city: there is no evidence that the conquering Spanish attacked or ever even found the settlement.

It is possible that sickesses brought by the Europeans, like smallpox, killed the inhabitants and forced the abandonment of the site.

Once the people had gone, it did not take very long at all for the jungle to overtake the city and hide it from the passing years.

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It was not until 1911 when the American archaeologist Hiram Bingham visited the site that it became known to the wider world.

Machu Picchu immediately became a sensation, and thousands flocked to see the lost city.

Today Machu Picchu is the most famous tourist attraction in Peru, drawing hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

It was declared a World Heritage Site in 1983, and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007.

Machu Picchu is the best preserved Inca archaeological site in Peru and gives an unparalleled look into Inca civilization, technology, and daily life.

I hope you enjoyed learning about Machu Picchu today.

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Machu Picchu. Machu Picchu is located in the Italian Alps. True or false?

Pyramids of Giza. Is Machu Picchu located in a desert? Is it located in the Amazon rainforest? Was it constructed around 2,000 BC?

Stonehenge. Does Machu Picchu consist only of residential homes made of wood?

Baalbek, Lebanon. Scholars know for certain that Machu Picchu was built as a tourist attraction. Is this right or wrong?

Pyramid of the Moon. Did a hundred thousand people live in Machu Picchu? Did the bring in all their food form the lowlands?

Rapa Nui (Easter Island). Was Machu Picchu constructed using cranes, cement trucks and steel reinforcement bars? How would you describe the stone sections of the walls of Machu Picchu buildings?

Stone Spheres, Costa Rica. Spanish explorers were the first outsiders to reach Machu Picchu in the 1500s. Is this correct or incorrect?

Nazca Lines. Do only a few archaeologists and scientists visit Machu Picchu?
Carnac, Brittany, France. My friends and I have visited Machu Picchu. Yes or no?

Sacsahuaman. Why do you think the Incas constructed Machu Picchu?

Tiwanaku. My friends and would like to be scientist, archaeologist, explorer, architect or historian.

Puma Punku. What might happen in the future?

Coral Castle. What could or should people and governments do?

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