Inca Civilization

The Inca civilization was the largest Pre-Columbian civilization in the Americas and Cusco was its capital. The best kept example of its architecture is Machu Picchu.

Machu Picchu

The Sacred City is one of the most significant archeological sites left by the Incas


Fascinating culture and Inca heritage of this beautiful country

Lake Titicaca

Lake Titicaca is the highest navigable lake in the world. It occupies an important place in Inca mythology.

Animals of Peru

Animals in Peru have specialized and adapted to the conditions of its geography. At higher altitude levels, few animals and plants can survive because of the lack of oxygen.

Home » UNESCO Heritage Sites

Chavin Archaeological Site

Submitted by |
Chavin de Huantar is located at 10,330 feet (3150 meters) above sea level between the eastern snowless Cordillera Negra and the western snowy Cordillera Blanca in the Andes.

Chavin de Huantar developed between 1,500 to 500BC in the highlands of the southeast of the Cordillera Blanca in the department of Ancash, 186 miles (300 km) north of Lima. Chavin is one of the earliest known pre-Columbian civilizations that developed in the Early Horizon. Chavin de Huantar was the economic, social and political center of the region. Chavin was designated UNESCO Heritage Site in 1985.

The entire site is about 12 square kilometers and contains the main architectural complex of buildings, plazas, galleries, dwellings and other structures as well as agricultural zones, terraces and irrigation canals.

The Chavin people built large stone temples and plazas decorated with anthropomorphic and zoomorphic carvings. Its buildings contain an internal network of galleries and a system of vents and drains that required advanced knowledge of engineering.

The Chavin built this center as a place of worship that attracted people from far away regions unifying and consolidating its presence in the Central Andes. They came so see the Shamans who were priests believed to communicate with the deities. In their honor they built stone sculptures such as the carved heads, Chavin Lanzón, Tello Obelisk and Raimondi Stella. Shamans were at the top of the social hierarchy and used astronomy to predict climate used in deciding which crops to plant. People venerated them and thought they had special powers.

Tello Obelisk

The Tello Obelisk is a lithic sculpture measuring 8.27 feet (2.52 meters) tall in trapezoidal shape and sculpted on four of its sides. This sculpture represents the union of two caimans complemented by the representation of other elements such as birds, humans, felines, plants and serpents. This is the most complex sculpture of the Chavin culture due to the complexity of its iconographic form.

Tello Obelisc

The top of the Tello Obelisc. This is the most complex stone sculpture found in Chavin de Huantar. Its iconographic richness and detail is unparalelled.

Raimondi Stella

The Raimondi Stella is a monolith or a granite rock sculpture that represents God Wiracocha. It measures 6.5 feet (1.98 meters) in height, 24 feet (7.4 meters) in length and 5.6 feet (1.7 meters) in width.

The Stella is sculpted only on one side. Wiracocha is represented as a anthropomorphical feline with two extended arms holding a pole. The Raimondi Stella is currently at the National Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology in Lima.

Estella de Raymondi

The Raimondi Stella is carved only on one side. Two thirds of the sculpture represents a complicated elaboration of its hair.

Carved Heads

Carved Heads are a representation of a deity represented by the Jaguar. All the heads are of different sizes. Some faces have anthropomorphic features, others feline characteristics. They were placed around the exterior walls guarding the complex against invaders.

Chavin-Cabeza clava

Chavin carved head or cabeza clava


Tags: , , , , ,