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Machu Picchu is an abandoned city located on top of a 7,970-foot mountain in Peru. It was previously used by the ancient Inca people for 80-100 years. The Urubamba Valley is an area with fertile farmland that is located beneath Machu Picchu. The Urubamba Valley features many old villages and attractions.
See the fact file below for more information on the Machu Picchu & Urubamba Valley or alternatively, you can download our 24-page Machu Picchu & Urubamba Valley worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
BACKGROUND & HISTORY
- Machu Picchu was believed to have been built by the Inca people. The space was largely forgotten about after the Spanish colonial period.
- In 1911, it was rediscovered by an American historian named Hiram Bingham. Bingham went on to publish a novel about Machu Picchu, which he called The Lost City of the Incas (1948).
- The Urubamba Valley features multiple attractions and towns that can be visited by tourists today.
- Some people still reside in the small towns in the Urubamba Valley.
MACHU PICCHU BACKGROUND & HISTORY
- Machu Picchu is an ancient city located atop a 7,970-foot (2429.256 meters) mountain ridge. It is located above the Urubamba Valley.
- Many archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was home to the ancient Inca civilization (Ancient Inca Facts & Worksheets).
- The current mayor of the village of Machu Picchu is Darwin Baca León.
- Although the exact date of construction is unknown, it is believed that Machu Picchu was constructed between 1450–1460 AD.
- Machu Picchu is said to have been a city built by two Incan rulers – Pachacutec Inca Yupanqui (1438 AD –1471 AD) and Túpac Inca Yupanqui (1472 AD –1493 AD).
- Machu Picchu was constructed as a space for the royal empire. There were approximately 750 inhabitants, the majority of them being servants.
- Machu Picchu was used for 80-100 years before it was abandoned by the Incan people. Historians believe that the Incan people left Machu Picchu when the Spanish arrived and conquered the area in the 1532 AD.
- The main structures remaining from the Inca people are the Room of the Three Windows, Intihuatana, and the Temple of the Sun.
- Machu Picchu was unknown until July 24, 1911, when an American Archeologist named Hiram Bingham accidentally stumbled across it.
- Bingham announced his discovery of Machu Picchu to the world in a book called Lost City of the Incas.
- Machu Picchu receives approximately 77 inches of rainfall per year.
DID YOU KNOW?
- In 2007, Machu Picchu was voted one of the “7 New Wonders of the World”.
- The name Machu means “old” or “old person”, and the name Picchu means “a pyramid” or “cone”. Machu Picchu translates to “old mountain”.
- Many of the buildings on Machu Picchu have been restored. There is a lot of concern over preserving as much of this sacred city as possible.
URUBAMBA VALLEY BACKGROUND & HISTORY
- The Urubamba Valley is also known as “The Sacred Valley”. It is located in the mountains of Peru, approximately 12 miles from the city of Cusco.
- The valley is home to rich agricultural land and many old villages and ruins.
- The first known inhabitants of this valley was the “Chanapata” civilization, also known as the “Qotacalla” people. These people lived in the Urubamba Valley from 500 – 800 AD.
- The Inca people claimed this valley from 1000 to 1400 AD.
- In 1537, Incan ruler Manco Inca Yupanqui fought against the Spanish in what is known as the Battle of Ollantaytambo.
- The Inca people were successful in defeating the Spanish colonizers in the Battle of Ollantaytambo.
- The Urubamba Valley is situated next to the Urubamba River.
- The lower altitude of the Urubamba Valley and the rich soil made it easier for the Inca people to grow many different types of food.
- Some of the food grown in the Urubamba Valley include corn, potatoes, and fruit trees.
- The valley was originally formed from the Urubamba River.
- The valley gets a large amount of rainfall from October to April. On average, the Urubamba Valley will get 20.7 inches of rain each year.
DID YOU KNOW?
- The Urubamba River is also known as the Vilcanota River, or “The Sacred River”.
- The valley runs east and west and is approximately 62 miles long.
- The temperature in the Urubamba Valley averages 59.7℉ in the warmer months (November) and 54℉ in the colder months (July).
URUBAMBA VALLEY VILLAGES & ATTRACTIONS
- In Spanish, the Urubamba Valley is called “The Valle Sagrado de Los Incas”.
- There are seven villages and attractions located in the Urubamba Valley: Pisac, Maras, Moray, Ollantaytambo, Chinchero, Calca, and Yucay.
- The villages and attractions in the Urubamba Valley are influenced by Inca and Colonial history.
- Pisac is well known for its Astronomical Observatory, as well as its many tunnels that run underground to the city of Cusco and Machu Picchu.
- The Moray is a large area composed of overlapping terraces that are ideal for gardening. This space is believed to have been used by the Incan people as a theater for religious and civil ceremonies.
- In the village of Ollantaytambo, some homes still stand intact and have people who reside there. The main temple is built out of pink granite.
- Calca is surrounded by mountains and features “Machacancha Medicinal Baths”, also known as sulfur baths.
- In the town of Chinchero, there are remains of old Spanish colonial buildings. Chinchero was used mainly by the Inca people to grow food.
- Yucay was a place for the Inca royalty to rest and relax. It was also a good place for growing food, and it features many terraces.
- Maras is known for the “Maras Salt Pools”. These pools were used to mine salt by the Inca people, as well as by the Spanish colonists.
- Each village and attraction in the Urubamba Valley has stunning mountain landscapes with many winding rivers running through them.
MACHU PICCHU & URUBAMBA VALLEY TOURISM
- Today, tourists can experience Machu Picchu and the Urubamba Valley by staying in a floating bunker on a 400-foot mountain.
- An estimated 1.2 million tourists visit Machu Picchu and the Urubamba Valley each year. Of those 1.2 million, approximately 800,000 people are travellers from outside of Peru.
- Tourists need to be wary of the time they travel, as there are large variances in rainfall. The dry season is from April – December, and the rainy season is from January – March.
Machu Picchu & Urubamba Valley Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Machu Picchu & Urubamba Valley across 24 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Machu Picchu & Urubamba Valley worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Machu Picchu which is an abandoned city located on top of a 7,970-foot mountain in Peru. It was previously used by the ancient Inca people for 80-100 years. The Urubamba Valley is an area with fertile farmland that is located beneath Machu Picchu. The Urubamba Valley features many old villages and attractions.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Machu Picchu, Urubamba Valley, Peru Facts
- Word Scramble
- Tourist Travels
- The Ancient Crossword
- True or False?
- See, Think, Wonder
- Hiking Adventure
- The Search of Words
- Fill in the Blank
- Urubamba Acrostic
- Tour of Machu Picchu
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Use With Any Curriculum
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