Tiwanaku

Historic Megalithic Site

One of the largest cultural and archaeological sites in South America was once a resilient powerful pre-Hispanic empire which today remains shrouded in mysteries.

Tiwanaku is a pre-Columbian archaeological site with extensive monumental stone architecture, distinctive iconographic styles in stone and ceramic art. Tiwanaku is located on the south shores of Lake Titicaca in present day Bolivia, about 60 km west of Peru.

Prior to the Inca Empire, Tiwanaku was one of the most advanced and the most significant Andean civilizations. Between AD 600 and 800, Tiwanaku grew from a small agricultural settlement into a thriving administrative capital of a major political state, with remarkable agricultural techniques. At its peak, some 70,000 inhabitants lived in Tiwanaku, which also had dominated and influenced large portions of southern Bolivia, northwestern Argentina, northern Chile, and southern Peru.

Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000, Tiwanaku unique construction methods and stone creations defy explanation. Its monumental structures and megalithic blocks, included: the Sun Gate, Sunken Temple, the Pyramid of Akapana, Kalasasaya walls, carvings and statues of exotic faces, animals and geometric shapes.

Around 1000 A.D. Tiwanaku empire suddenly collapsed, and by 1150, Tiwanaku had completely disappeared. Historians believe it was due to a severe and prolonged drought that ravaged the region. As the Tiwanaku had no written language, archeologists have made various assumptions. Nevertheless, Tiwanaku was once the capital of one of the greatest and most enduring of ancient civilizations.

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Locationsouthwest of Lake Titicaca
Altiplano region
Tiwanaku




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