Picture of a
Catholic Church that was built right on top of an ancient Inca Ruin in the
village of Chinchero near Cusco in Peru. The Catholic church dates back to
1572, when the Viceroy Toledo started the "Doctrine of Our Lady of Monserrat of
Chinchero" and subsequently started the construction of the Catholic Church.
The church was finished in 1607, and that is the date that can be found in the
main arch inside of the church. In the 1960s, shortly before this photograph was
taken, it was discovered that the church was built on top of an important Inca
palace. The Inca palace is thought to have been very important because its
location on top of a hill facing other ancient Inca ruins and various shrines.
Two of these shrines ("wakas" in Quechua) are carved out of natural limestone
formations and are called "Chinkana" and "Titiqaqa." Another shrine to the west
is called "Pumaqaqa" which is a rock sculptures of two pumas. To the west
of the church one can explore these shrines and various ancient inca farming
terraces. Currently, there is a small museum near the Church in which
there are some interesting and very large Inca pottery pieces.