Early on our second morning in Lima, Bob and I hired a driver to take us southeast of Lima to the Ruins of Pachacamac. These ruins are some of the oldest pyramids uncovered from beneath the desert hills and dunes of Peru. To the casual eye, the 500 acres of this national museum and archaeological site just appear as a monotone conglomeration of crumbling adobe bricks.
Several pyramids at the Ruins of Pachacamac have been uncovered from the desert sands.
After the Inca arrived, they used the Temple of Pachacamac as an important administrative center.
With the informed and colorful commentary of our personal guide, we soon came to recognize the complete lay of the land as it was in the days of the Huari Ishmay Empire, then in the days of the Inca Empire, and finally when it fell under Spanish control.
Throughout our tour of the Ruins of Pachacamac, we were accompanied not only by our guide but also by a Peruvian hairless dog with a very inquisitive temperament.
The hairless dog trailed us for the duration of our tour of the Ruins of Pachacamac. Although our movements among the adobe walls, courtyards, arches and stepped walls were strictly controlled, our little four-legged friend nimbly surmounted any and all crumbling surfaces.
On our hike, we saw the remains of multiple pyramids, burial places, temples and reservoirs.
The guide informed us that this location was originally selected for four reasons: the proximity to the ocean, a nearby river, the surrounding marshland and the height of the highest hill, which is where the Sun Temple was built. The Inca built the Sun Temple as a religious shrine; they also built five additional buildings during their time there.
From atop the Sun Temple, we had a view of an offshore Pacific island.
This is part of the restored ruins of Mamacuna, which date back to the time of the Inca Empire. It was here that young girls were taught by older women to worship and then to prepare for service in the Sun Temple.
The precision and symmetry of interior arches inside the restored ruins of Mamacuna were impressive.
Here, we see the courtyard of Mamacuna. The space was quite expansive.
Near the entrance gate, a local artisan was busy carving a gourd.
It proved to be a very interesting day in the hot, dry Peruvian desert at the ruins of Pachacamac outside the City of Lima.