Posts Tagged ‘Qhapaq Ñan’
The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is part of an extensive Inca system of trails of more than 23,000 kilometres that integrated the Tahuantinsuyo Empire (which means four regions) that covered Colombia, the west of Brazil, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia, to the centre of Chile and the north of Argentina. These trails tended to be principally on the coast or in the mountains but in a few cases they reached the tropical edge of the jungle.
The Inca Trails (or Qhapaq Ñan – which refers to the network of trails) were without a doubt one of the marvels of Tahuantinsuyo, according to the Peruvian historian, José Antonio del Busto, who explains that the Inca Huayna Capac most increased the network of trails in order to quickly mobilise his army.
The trails varied in quality and size, they could be 6 to 8 metres wide on the coast but, in the mountains the paving was only one metre wide but the path was audaciously steep and climbed over the difficult Andean mountains.
There are a number of ancient paths close to Cusco – for example, at Qhorqa, some 20 kilometres from Cusco. On the route to Huchuy Qosqo, there is another interesting Inca Trail. These were constructed perfectly and are still used without much modification. Read the rest of this entry »