Temple of the Sun

Machu Picchu, Temple of the Sun


The Temple of the Sun is one of the most recognized ruins of Machu Picchu. This construction is shaped like a semi-circle and built on solid rock, an existing granite block shaped to blend with the natural curves, with a diameter of 10.50 meters. It is composed of highly polished polyhedrons.

There are two trapezoidal windows in this building with protruding knobs at every comer, and on the north side there is a carefully-sculpted door with bored holes in the doorjamb, very similar to the Qoricancha temple in Cusco. The Spanish historians relate there were once gold and precious jewels encrusted in the door. To the West of the temple there is a rectangular patio with nine ceremonial doorways alternating with prism-shaped studs.

The entrance to the Sun Temple was a magnificent double wooden door, which on the inside had a locking system consisting of stone rings. Two wooden bars must have been hung from the doorhead and tied into the small stone compartments carved in the inside jambs.

The temple of the sun is located in the heart of the Eastern Sector and was a highly protected place where only the Incas and priests had access, normal people made their ceremonies in public places like Machu Picchu or Cuzco.

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