DATE AND HISTORY OF ESTABLISHMENT Created as a
historical sanctuary (santuario histórico) on 8 January 1981, under Law (Supreme
Resolution) DS 001-81-AA. Inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1983.
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LAND TENURE Private ownership (property of four main "predios":
Mandorpampa, Q'ente, Torontoy and Santa Rita de Q'ente).
ALTITUDE Ranges from 1,800m to 3,800m
PHYSICAL FEATURES The site lies in the Selva Alta
zone, and includes part of a highly dissected mountain massif of the high Andes
plateau, which rises steeply from the Urubamba River valley. The area around the
ruins of Macchu Picchu consists of many rocky pinnacles with exposures
supporting thin soils, although the area also includes sites with complex
systems of old Inca terraced land constructed to conserve the soils. The
Urubamba alluvial basin is an almost continuous zone of arable and pastoral
farming land. Geologically the area is very complex, being a combination of
marine sedimentary rocks of the Cretaceous-Tertiary period and intrusive
volcanic material, including lavas and granites. The sedimentary deposits
include Ordovician schists, slates and quartzite. Streams and rivers feed the
major Rio Urubamba valley system as well as a number of smaller valleys in the
north such as that of Quillabamba (MAA, 1986).
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CLIMATE The annual temperature averages 16°C and
annual rainfall is between 1500mm and 3000mm at low altitudes. At 2,500m
altitude the average temperature drops to 10.2°C, and annual rainfall is 2170mm.
The dry season lasts from May to September and the wet season from October to
VEGETATION The site has been influenced by man for
many centuries, leading to a combination of man-made habitats, paramo grassland,
Polylepis thickets, partially degraded virgin forest and former
cultivated land which has reverted back to forest or scrub. At lower altitudes,
patches of woodland predominate, their extent being dependant upon past human
interference, especially during the Inca period. The vegetation rises from the
dry subtropical forest along the river valleys to the very humid low montane
forest. Trees represented in the denser woodland include locally endangered
mahogany Swietenia macrophylla and species of the following genera;
Ceder, Podocarpus (the only conifer in Peru), Lauraceae Ocotea,
Cunoniaceae Weinmannia, Nectandra and Cecropia. A number of
tree ferns are present, including Cyathea sp. and also palms such as
Geromoina sp., Guasca sp. and Riupala sp. (MAA, 1981). Reeds
Phragmites sp., willow and alder occur around rivers and streams, whilst
open grassland, low shrubs and scattered thickets of Polylepis sp. and
bamboo are found close to the ruins (Parker et al, 1982). The high
altitude subalpine paramo includes many Graminae, Festuca sp., Stipa
sp. and Puya sp. such as P. raimondii (I). The mountain ridges are
characterised by bamboo Gaudua sp. (Parker et al., 1982).
PICCHU EXPRESS 3 DAYS
||3 Days and 2 Nights
||Cusco, Machu Picchu
PICCHU CLASSIC 4 DAYS
||4 Days and 3 Nights
||Cusco, Machu Picchu, Sacred Valley
CUSCO THE INCAS EMPIRE
||5 Days and 4 Nights
||Cusco, Koricancha, Sacsayhuaman, Puka Pukara
and Tambomachay, Urubamba Valley, Ollantaytambo, Machu Picchu, Aguas
MACHU PICCHU TOTAL
EXCURSION 6 DAYS
|6 Days and 5 Nights
||Cusco, Moray, Maras, Salinas,
Aguas Calientes, Mandor, Putukusi, Wayna Picchu, Intipunku, Machu Picchu
FAUNA Mammals include otter Lutra longicaudis,
dwarf brocket deer Mazama chunyii, long-tailed weasel Mustela
frenata, Pampas cat Felis colocolo and ocelot Felis pardalis.
One of the most threatened species found within the area is spectacled bear
Tremarctos ornatus (V) (Jorgenson, 1982). The bird community includes Andean
condor Vultur gryphus and Andean cock-of-the-rock Rupicola peruviana.
Low altitude areas and agricultural fields are characterised by the presence of
mountain caracaras Phalcobaenus megalopterus and Andean lapwing
Vanellus resplendus, whilst red-backed hawk Buteo polysoma, American
kestrel Falco sparverius, speckled teal Anas flavirostris and
Andean gull Larus serranus. Torrent duck Merganetta armata,
white-capped dipper Cinclus leucocephalus and fasciated tiger-heron
Tigrisoma lineatum are found in narrow stream valleys are associated with
riverside trees. Species around the ruins include black-tailed trainbearer
Lesbia victoriae, white-winged black-tyrant Knipolegus aterrimus,
tufted tit tyrant Anairetes alpinus, cinereous conebill Conirostrum
cinereum, blue-capped tanager Thraupis cyanocephala and rufous-collared
sparrow Zonotrichia capensis. In addition, a new species of wren
Thryothorus has been observed in the bamboo thickets (Parker et
al., 1982). Snakes such as Boa sp. are present and there are numerous
lizards and frogs in the damper areas.
CULTURAL HERITAGE The park was established to protect
the landscape of the renowned Macchu Picchu archaeological site, founded by the
Inca culture. It is thought that it was a royal Inca residence and was perhaps
the centre for collecting coca from surrounding plantations. The site eventually
fell into ruin, was covered by the encroaching forest, and 'lost to science'
until re-discovery in 1911. There are also the remains of the Inca Way in the
area, and local legends, including that of the spectacled bear, which is thought
to serve as a messenger between the spirits of the high elevations and those of
the jungle (Anon, 1981).
LOCAL HUMAN POPULATION Much of the park area is
settled with many small campesino communities and farms especially on the lower
slopes. The original inhabitants were skilled in irrigation and built terraces
and drainage which extend long distances across irregular ground. Agriculture
(maize and barley) and livestock grazing (llamas, cattle and sheep) are the
dominant economic activities and occur in over 20,000ha of the park. The local
economy is also supportedby tourists visiting the Inca ruins (MAA, 1981; Peyton,
1983). The nearby city of Cuzco was the Inca capital and still remains an
important town with over 105,000 inhabitants. It is the administrative and
commercial centre for a considerable part of the Urubamba basin (INRENA, pers.
VISITORS AND VISITOR FACILITIES In the mid 1980s, some
180,000 people annually visited the Inca Trail and the ruins. More recently, the
figure has risen to 300,000, including 7,000 on the Inca trails (Ferreyros,
1988). Accommodation includes a hotel and camping facilities. A museum exists at
the ruins and there are plans to develop the area further for tourism.
SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH AND FACILITIES Since 1982,
research has been undertaken on the ecology of the spectacled bear in
cooperation with the New York Zoological Society (Peyton, 1982). Vegetation
transects have been undertaken, and over 4,500 herbarium specimens have been
collected. Numerous bird studies have been made (Parker et al.,
CONSERVATION VALUE This urban creation of the Inca
Empire, which appears to have been naturally cut in the continuous rock
escarpment, is an area of outstanding natural beauty which encompasses patches
of high altitude habitats and associated wildlife. The site also harbours
populations of the threatened spectacled bear.
History goes hundred of years behind our modern world, but still hardly a modern
construction gets to mesmerize visitors as this Inca citadel
Anon. (1988). Fire reaps havoc in wildlife sanctuary.
Animals international. VIII/27. p4.
Anon. (1988b). Fire claim jungle bears. The Guardian
newspaper. 17 August, 1988. p5.
Dourojeanni, M.J. (1985). Management problems in the Andean
National Parks and protected areas of Peru. In The Hindu Kush-Himalaya.
Kathmandu: King Mahendra Trust for Nature Conservation and the International
Centre for integrated mountain development 159-161pp.
Ferreyros, A. (1988). Situacion actual de los Parques
Nacionales y Otras Unidades de Conservation en El Peru. Asociacion de Ecologia y
Jorgenson, J.P (1982). Peru report. Spectacled bear
specialist group Newsletter 3. 6-8.
Jorgenson, J.P (1983). Peru field report. Spectacled bear
specialist group Newsletter 4. 11-12.
MAA (1981). Lista de información actualizada sobre
unidades de conservación. Ministerio de Agricultura y Alimentación, Lima.
Parker, T.A. (1980). Notes on little known birds of the upper
Urubamba Valley, southern Peru. Auk 97: 167-176.
Parker, T.A. and J.P. O'Neill (1976). An introduction to
bird-finding in Peru: Part II. The Carpish Pass Region of the Eastern Andes
along the Central Highway. Birding 8: 205-216.
Parker, T.A., Parker, S.A. and Plenge, M.A. (1982). An
annotated checklist of Peruvian birds. Buteo books, Vermillion, South
Peru (1981). Macchu Picchu. World Heritage nomination.
Peyton, B. (1983). Spectacled bear habitat use in the
historical sanctuary of Macchu Picchu and adjacent areas. Abstract of paper
presented at the 6th international conference on bear research and management,
presented by the Bear Biology Association, The Grand Canyon Squire Inn, Arizona,
Plan COPESCO (1974) Macchu Picchu Report and plan.
Centro de Servicios del Parque Nacional Macchu Picchu. 114 pp
DATE August 1987, revised May 1989, September 1989 and
May 1990, August 1995, May 2007