Not far from the bustling city of Lima, you can find some curious ruins that are not usually so crowded by visitors or tourists. This always seemed a bit ironic to us, because we are talking about one of the most important archaeological sites in the region. With a rich history and numerous attractions to explore, the Pachacamac ruins are one of the most underrated sites around Lima. And for that reason, together with the travel experts of Machu Travel Peru, we would like to tell you a little about the Pachacamac ruins. This impressive archaeological site was once an important religious center for the surrounding communities, and we would like you to get to know it a little more.

Pachacamac: one of the first Pre-columbian citadels


pachacamac description

The archaeological site of Pachacamac is a pre-Columbian citadel that has different adobe and stone palaces, as well as impressive pyramids used as temples. The ancient ruins of Pachacamac were one of the most important religious and administrative sites for pre-Hispanic cultures. The vast site is home to numerous ancient pyramids, temples, palaces, and numerous other artifacts that demonstrate the lifestyle of cultures. Despite its great age, most of its structures and constructions can still be distinguished in very good condition. Today the Pachacamac site could be considered one of the most important tourist sites in Peru. If you plan to spend a few days in Lima, then for nothing in the world you can miss this tour at such a short distance.


pachacamac history

Before the arrival of the Spanish conquerors, the Pachacamac site was considered a great ceremonial and religious center where large ceremonial pyramids, houses, and other constructions decorated the surroundings. The constructions were carried out by different cultures that inhabited the site. The site was first established in 200 AD. by the culture of Lima and flourished for more than a thousand years until the arrival of the Spanish conquerors. The ceremonial site was taken over by the Huari culture between 600 AD. to 1100 AD, who rebuilt the city to establish it as an administrative center. It was during this period that the site reached its peak and became a religious pilgrimage destination. After 1100 A.D. the Ychma culture took control of Pachacamac so that later in 1470 AD could be invaded by the Incas. The site came to an end when the Spanish conquerors arrived to desecrate and demolish certain constructions. It was only in the 1890s that archaeologists began to discover this incredible historical site. Today you may be able to appreciate its constructions in the many tours in Peru. Don’t miss out on this incredible site!


pachacamac purpose

The word Pachacamac can be translated in various ways, among its meanings are “soul of the Earth, the one that makes the world happy”, “The one who animated the world” or “The one who created the earth and time”. Pachacamac was one of the most important deities for pre-Hispanic cultures, which is why the site was considered a place of worship. It is believed that its purpose was specifically religious and ceremonial, as there is evidence of different cultures in coastal regions pilgrimage to the site. Although certain pieces of evidence suggest that some constructions were also used as royal palaces for some important rulers of the time. Today, the site is considered one of the best day trips from Lima, since it is located just a few kilometers from the capital.


pachacamac what to see

The Pachacamac site can be divided into two main sections. The first area is considered the sacred section and within it, you can find temples of great religious importance, a large cemetery, and the three main pyramids of the site. While within the second region you can find numerous constructions without ceremonial purposes, including some adobe pyramids. As if that were not enough, near the site you can also enjoy the Pachacamac Museum, where different artifacts and historical objects found in the area are gathered. Without a doubt, the Pachacamac site is one of the best attractions to experience after knowing all the things to see in Lima.


how to get to pachacamac

The Pachacamac ruins are located only about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from Lima, so getting there is not complicated at all. You can enjoy these ancient ruins in a half or full-day tour if you prefer, everything will depend on your interest in the site. If you want to make the most of your tour, it is best to be next to a certified guide who can explain the different constructions. You can even choose to get to Pachacamac after a tour of the city knowing the different attractions, such as the Huaca Pucllana in Lima. You will have numerous alternatives to enjoy this incredible historical site.


Peru boasts many attractive archaeological sites throughout the country, some of them within easy reach of just a bus ride away. We hope together with the experts of Machu Travel Peru to have been of help. If you want more information about this incredible destination, you can consult our advisers for free. Make sure to add Pachacamac to your travel list, you won’t regret it!

Peru has so much to offer, it can be hard to know where to start. With many years of experience in the tourism sector, Machu Travel Peru is happy to help with anything regarding your trip to Machu Picchu and any tours around it. Make your Machu Picchu experience an unforgettable one!