THE 10 MOST IMPRESSIVE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES IN LATIN AMERICA

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The ten most impressive archaeological sites in Latin America, places that bear witness to ancientAmerican cultures and the great empires of the early days.

1 – Machu Picchu. Peru: Archaeological Sites of Latin America Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu. In Flickr Rocco Lucia.

Supposedly impressive Inca city built in the XV century over 2,360 meters above sea level,breathtaking landscape walls, terraces and ramps seem carved in the rock itself, immersedbetween majestic peaks of mountains, cliffs and greenery of the Amazon forest. According toassume it would have been both one of the vacation homes of Pachacutec (Inca Tawantinsuyuninth, 1438-1470) as a religious shrine. Today considered one of the Seven Wonders of theModern World, recreates through its temples, palaces and stairways, which was once the most magnificent building built by the Inca empire, comprising a large area of 530 meters long by 200width comprising at least 172 compounds.

2 – Uxmal. Mexico: Latinoamerica Uxmal Archeological Sites

Governor’s Palace at Uxmal. In Olivier Bruchez Flickr.

One of the most important archaeological sites of the Mayan culture with Chichen Itza and Tikal,supposedly founded in the seventh century during the classical period and since abandonedhundreds of years ago at the time of arrival of the conquerors. Today there are still significantmonumental buildings that stand out for their size and decor, jewelry from the past such as the Pyramid of the Magician with a height of 35 m and the magnificent Governor’s House.

3 – Chichen Itza. Mexico: Archaeological Sites of Chichen Itza Latinoamerica

Pyramid of Kukulkan at Chichen Itza. In the Tracks Alaskan Dude.

According presumably would have been founded by the Maya to the mid-sixth century, reachingits peak between 900 and 1500 AD period that would become the main center of power in the Yucatan Peninsula. Today considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World is demonstrating a monumental collection of ceremonial centers, temples and pyramids, among which its famous Pyramid of Kukulcan, majestic building 24 meters high, 365 steps and 9platforms, where each Down the mystic equinox Serpent Kukulcan occurs.

4 – Tikal. Guatemala: Latin American Tikal Archeological Sites

Tikal. In MikeMurga Flickr.

Some capital of one of the most powerful kingdoms of the ancient Maya once would have beenfounded around the V century BC, reached its peak during the Classic Period, between 200 and 900 AD, dominating much of the region in the field political, economic and military. Thearchitecture of the old town is built of limestone and includes remains of temples that tower over 70 meters, large royal palaces, in addition to a number of smaller pyramids, palaces, residences, administrative buildings, platforms and stone monuments.

5 – Teotihuacán. Mexico: Latin American Teotihuacan Archaeological Sites

Teotihuacan. In Flickr Crystian Cruz.

One of the most famous archaeological sites in America, supposedly built between III and VIIcenturies by civilizations of ethnic identity is not yet clarified and then the Aztecs dubbed as the “City of the Gods”. Today one of the most monumental complexes of the continent, givenshowing through as the majestic pyramids of the Sun and Moon, the spectacular urban layout of the Avenue of the Dead and a number of palaces and homes of famous people, the splendor everreached, as one of the major power centers of Mesoamerica.

6 – Palenque. Mexico: Latin American Palenque Archaeological Sites

Palenque. In Martijn.Munneke Flickr.

It is believed to have been founded by the Maya around 100 BC predominantly as a farmer village, transforming between the seventh and tenth century AD in the capital of the region of B’akaal(zone of Chiapas and Tabasco), during which it would have made ​​alliances with Tikal, the other great Mayan city of the time. In its original splendor, today is only appreciable less than 10% ofthe total area reached the city, while remaining more than a thousand structures covered by jungle. Among its many fascinating remains characteristic temples for its detailed sculptural work, carvings and hieroglyphics are counted. Notably, this archaeological site is also home to the famous engraving known as the “astronaut”, originating from numerous theories andspeculations about the Mayan connection with extraterrestrial beings.

7 – Copan. Honduras: Latin American Copan Archaeological Sites

Ruins Tennis Fencing in Copan. In Adalberto.H.Vega Flickr.

While his early architectural structures dating from the ninth century BC, little is known about its origins until the city was refounded by a new dynasty linked to Tikal early V century AD. At this time he became a powerful city-state and a regional power in the southern Maya regionmagnificence that today allow recreate their large complex of pyramids, plazas and palaces.Among its highlights its particular concentration portrait stelae, which for centuries havedecorated processional ways in the central plaza and the Acropolis.

8 – Easter Island. Chile: Archaeological sites Latinoamerica Easter Island

Tongariki Ahu on Easter Island. In the Flickr of David Berkowitz.

Their first settlement have begun between V and XIX centuries AD by Rapa Nui, who have raisedbetween the twelfth and seventeenth centuries giant stone sculptures known as moairepresenting their deceased ancestors, so that project their supernatural power over theirdescendants. Today his mysterious ancient culture survive about 600 moai distributedthroughout the island, some around the original quarries and other ceremonial centers. Among them the most famous is for the Ahu Tongariki platform a hundred feet long on which fifteenmoai of different periods and forms stand facing the bay.

9 – Jesuit Guaraní Missions. Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay: Archaeological Sites of Latin AmericaMission San Miguel

San Miguel Mission. Juan_m Flickr.

Founded in the seventeenth century by the Jesuit order in order to evangelize the Guarani Indiansand related peoples. In total there were 30 of which seven are recognized to be considered todaya World Heritage Site by UNESCO: San Ignacio Mini, Santa Ana Our Lady, Our Lady of Loreto, Santa Maria Maggiore, Jesuit Mission Holy Trinity of Paraná, Jesuit Mission of Jesus of Tavarangue andSan Miguel Mission.  Possibly San Miguel Mission in Brazil, is the most famous of them, immortalized in the film The Mission, manages to give witness through their ancient temple, central square and some houses virtually immersed in the jungle, a political and religious experience unique in history.

10 – Cave of the Hands. Argentina: Archaeological sites Latinoamerica Hands Cave

Hands Cave. MrHicks46 Flickr.

Located deep in the Pinturas River, corresponds to one of the oldest archaeological sites inartistic expressions of South America, a cave 24 meters deep in the walls of the Indians and theirpredecessors tehuelches plasmaron between 7350 BC and 600 A.D. a valuable collection ofpaintings. Among them the most famous are the famous “hand painted” Silhouettes in positive and negative of at least 829 hands, made with stencil art. In its symbolism little is known, assuming that they would have been part of a magical ritual.

Bonus…:

11. Monte Verde, Chile: Monte Verde Archaeological site

Fundación Monte Verde Image

Monte Verde is an archaeological site in southern Chile, located near Puerto Montt, Southern Chile, which has been dated to 14,800 years BP. This dating adds to the evidence showing that the human settlement of the Americas pre-dates the Clovis culture by roughly 1,000 years. This contradicts the previously accepted “Clovis first” model which holds that settlement of the Americas began after 13,500 BP. The Monte Verde findings were initially dismissed by most of the scientific community, but in recent years the evidence has become more widely accepted in some archaeological circles, although vocal “Clovis First” advocates remain.

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