Jr. las Mercedes
KuélapAt 9800 feet (3000 meters) above sea level, this is one of the Chachapoya culture’s most important archaeological sites, a military fortification protected by stone walls as high as 65 feet (20 meters). The compound includes traces of over 450 circular residences, all but identical, a main temple, a cemetery, and sundry other structures and enclosed spaces. Take the cable car—Peru’s first—to get there, at 20 soles or $6 round-trip.
AFAR Local Expert
about 5 years ago
Kuelap Fortress and Citadel
Kuelap is an ancient fortress in the clouds: a pre-Incan citadel hewn from a cliffside, wreathed with mist, and surrounded by thick, hilly jungle. Unlike the geometric designs of Incan architecture, the walls of this Chachapoyan city depict animal shapes and fantastical figures. The fortress was populated by more than 400 round houses, and some of these have been reconstructed in the past years. You must hike to reach the ruins, but the effort pays off.
about 7 years ago
The Other Machu Picchu
Kuelap is the 'Machu Picchu of the north' in Peru. Just as stunning, less of a hike, and about a million less tourists. I'd recommend this over Machu Picchu any day.