Kuelap and Chachapoyas

The Chachapoya was one of the most mysterious and independent Pre-Incaic cultures. They lived in the isolated and hard valleys around Chachapoyas, capital of the Amazonas department. Iquitos seems so far from these places, but the immense rivers indicate us the direction towards the Amazon. The Chachapoya had been able to adapt to a hostile environment, building fortified cities (Kuelap) and necropolis of sarcophagi on the impressive slopes of the mountains (Karajia). The numerous mummies that during the last few years have been discovered, following the crescent interest for this civilization, tell us a history of warriors (“Guerreros de las Nubes”), skillful farmers and architects. Kuelap, the fortified citadel of the Chachapoya, is an example of their ability, second only to Machu Picchu for majesty, still nearly undiscovered. Kuelap was erected in about 700 d.C, on a steep slope at 3000 meters of altitude and still shows in all their greatness the defensive walls, hundreds of meters long and till 20 meters high. Manuél guide us in the Chachapoya world and their houses with circular plant and tapered thatch roof. Complex ceremonial rituals, planning the sacrifice of animals (llamas), venerated the figure of the god Sun.

Kuelap's ruins, fortified citadel Chachapoya Pre-Columbian civilization Peru South America

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