Inca Terraced Ruins of Moray (Peru)

Inca Terraced Ruins of Moray (Peru)

Tue, 09/17/2019 - 17:24
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Moray is an archaeological site in Peru, northwest of Cuzco on a high plateau at about 11,500 ft and just west of the village of Maras. The site contains unusual Inca ruins, mostly consisting of several terraced circular depressions that suggest it was an agricultural laboratory.

Moray is an archaeological site in Peru, approximately 50 km (31 mi) northwest of Cuzco on a high plateau at about 3,500 m (11,500 ft) and just west of the village of Maras.

The site contains unusual Inca ruins — mostly consisting of several terraced circular depressions — the largest of which is approximately 30 m (98 ft) deep. As with many other Inca sites, there is also an irrigation system.

The concentric terraces are split by multiple staircases that provide the ability to physically walk from the top to the bottom of the bowl. Six more terraces, in connected ellipses, surround the concentric heart of Moray. Eight terraced steps that cover only a fraction of the perimeter overlook the site.

The purpose of these bowl-shaped depressions is uncertain but their depth, design, and orientation with respect to wind and sun creates a temperature difference of as much as 15 °C (27 °F) between the top and the bottom. These resulting "microclimates" fuel speculation that the rings were used as test beds for growing crops.

It's possible this complex was used for farming, or as an agricultural laboratory and research station used by the Incas but the full purpose behind these concentric terraces isn't fully known. Soil samples have shown that soils were brought in from different regions to be used in helping grow crops at the different levels of the terraces.