When Hiram Bingham slashed his way through the jungle to this place on July 24, 1911, he found two local families still living in the city. They were growing food in the terraces. As is the way of most “discovered by European stories,” he did not truly find Machu Picchu. He merely exposed it to the world. The locals knew, and kept the secret from the Spaniards for 500 years.
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In Qorikancha, a temple/museum/cathedral, I learn that the Spanish built the Church of Santo Domingo over-top the Incan Temple. Two earthquakes brought part of the church down. The masonry stone and arches crumbled. In the aftermath of the quake, the foundations of the Incan temple stood prominent and proud among the rubble.