Remains of Incas, Chincha and Paracas Culture: A Bone Yard of the Ancients

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In my wildest dreams would I have never thought walking through a sandy plane scattered with ancient human remains was even possible. I never thought there could be a place like this left on the planet. We visited a cemetery with researcher Brien Foerster  on our recent trip to southern Peru.

We stumbled across the remains of the Incas, Chincha and even those of the once thriving Paracas culture. This once burial site of the ancients is now a bone junk yard, only needing to dig into the shallow sandy dunes to uncover layer upon layer of grave sites. One culture upon another honored their dead by placing them in the ground, often with offerings of corn, cotton and pottery. The style of pottery remnants changed identifying the individual culture as the human remains eternally rest without protest.  And this is the very site where many of the engimatic elongated skulls of Paracas were uncovered as well.

Some of the remains found at this site date back over 2,000 years. When we handled the remains with much honor and respect. I actually talked to all of the remains I picked up and thanked them. That was the only way it was ok for me. Then I placed them back where I found them.

Imagine jumping over two ravines, drudging up sandy dunes and navigating the corners of private properties. You’ll never find this cemetery on a map or a tourist guide, yet thousands of souls have found their way to external rest here in the sandy dunes. The exploration of the grounds proved to be one of those opportunities of a lifetime (and worth the two sprained ankles that resulted from this adventure.) Would I do it again? Oh yes!

We hope you enjoy this photo essay  of our adventure.



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