Famous world explorers Tony Wheeler and Vince Michael listed Chavin de Huantar, a pre-Columbian archaeological site located in Huari province in Ancash region, as one of the five hidden gems to explore and check off your bucket list.
According to an article by CNN writer Katia Hetter, the afore-mentioned explorers encourage tourists to visit not only Lima and Machu Picchu, but also the Chavin de Huantar site while in Peru.
Even though they refer to Machu Picchu as the most stunning structure standing from the Inca empire, Wheeler and Michael claim Chavin de Huantar is cradle of one of the oldest cultures in Peru.
The monumental center of Chavin itself was clearly a very significant place, and its elaborate architecture places it among the most impressive temples of its time, anywhere in the world, Michael said.
The Chavin archaeological site, located about 250 kilometers (155 miles) north of Lima, seems to have been a religious and ceremonial pilgrimage center for the pre-Columbian Andean religious world.
The explorer assured this site represents one of the earliest manifestations of Shamanism, where power was legitimized through a belief in the small elite having a divine connection.
It is distinguished by a highly organized platform-mound-and-plaza architecture that includes precocious use of finely cut and worked stone facades as well as an intricate, graphic, baroque and instantly recognizable ‘art’ style executed in stone, pottery, bone, shell and gold, he added.
The other four overlooked world treasures listed in the article include Pingyao Ancient City in China, Catalhoyuk in Turkey, Hampi in India and Banteay Chhmar in Cambodia.World explorers and journalists encourage tourists to visit lesser known sites in Peru.