Marcahuamachuco: The New Machu Picchu of Northern Peru? (VIDEO)

(Photo: Ozono Television/Facebook)

Marcahuamachuco monument is poised to rival Kuelap as northern Peru’s most important archaeological site. Why?

Marcahuamachuco has emerged from obscurity little by little in the last 7 years. However, it has been known and studied by modern archaeologists since the beginning of the 20th century.

Why then, is Marcahuamachuco such a big deal?

One reason is the commanding view of the Andean countryside which La Republica likens to a “Game of Thrones” episode. This is an important touristic element if it is to compete with the likes of Machu Picchu and Kuelap.

Another reason is the mystery of exactly to which Andean civilization it belonged. At 1600 years old, the site shows early influences of Chavin but later influences of Wari, Cajamarca, and Recuay cultures. When the Incas conquered the region the site was already an ‘ancient ruin’, being no longer in use.

Some speculate it may have had its own unique culture and language.

Marcahuamachuco means “the people of the men with hawk-like headdresses” in Peru’s still widely spoken native language of Quechua.

It is hoped that along with Kuelap, Marcahuamachuco can help to attract more tourism to the northern regions of Peru. This would help to diversify Peru’s tourism industry and soften Machu Picchu’s virtual dominance of this market.

The monument is located about a 4-hour drive away from Trujillo in the interior regions of the department of La Libertad.

Peru Sorprendente on Youtube brings us this awe-inspiring preview of what could become the next Machu Picchu of northern Peru.



Mike grew up and eventually attended university in Green Bay, Wisconsin. He graduated in Integrative Leadership Studies with an emphasis in Urban and Regional Planning and has been a part of planning projects in three different countries. Mike’s passion is reading; he devours both literature and nonfiction. His favorite author is Peru’s own Julio Ramón Ribeyro.