Pikillacta, Wari settlement in Cusco

The Pikillacta settlement, located almost on the edge of the highway between Cusco and Puno, was studied by archaeologists at various times, and curiously they did not find pottery in the place. Without evidence of ceramics on the surface to assist in the assignment of cultural provenance, the association of the site with the Wari culture was not recognized for many years and was not generally accepted until the late 1950s and early 1960s

There are more than 700 individual structures or cells within the main architecture block, the passageways allow access to only a small percentage of the structures. Most of the doors found on the site were inside the structures or enclosures. This apparent absence of the doors of the high walls of Pikillacta has given rise to speculation such as theories that served as an insane asylum or prison.

Another mystery about Pikillacta was its water supply. If it had functioned as a city, a large amount of water would have been required for the daily needs of the people who live there.

The part of the site that has aroused the greatest interest and speculation is the group of 501 small united rooms located on the northwest side. These small uniform structures arranged in rows, with streets running between each row. Seen from the air, they resemble a giant honeycomb, it has been speculated that these numerous small structures must also be storage silos.

The grid of the site forms an almost perfect rectangle. Seen from the air the accuracy of the imposed grid is surprising, however, it is even more impressive when viewed on the ground. From the air, the precision and symmetry of the architecture tends to deceive the eye on the assumption that the site is at ground level. For the first time visitors are surprised by the undulating terrain and the slope of the hillside of Cerro Huchuy Balcon.

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