Inca Arquitecture

Inca architecture was characterized by its symmetry, simplicity and above all monumentality, the Incas assimilated experiences from other cultures such as the Tiahuanaco and Huari.

Characteristics of Inca Architecture

Some studies have tried to give us simple explanations, for example about the transfer of large stones, these were really blocks that detached and moved down ramps that should have a slope of no more than 10 degrees with the use of logs and pulled by the Men, there are even schemes on how this work could be where the ramps were extended to the place where you wanted to build.

These cyclopean walls have a trapezoidal profile, now we know that the Inca architecture had an anti-seismic system because they have a wider base and as the wall goes up, it becomes thinner.

Inca architecture has formidable examples such as the imposing Sacsayhuamán that dominates Cusco and whose specific function is still an enigma and in relation to the universal architectural wonders we cannot fail to mention Machu Picchu.

Inca Buildings

In the so-called navel of the world, buildings were built with elaborately carved stone, clearly standing out among them:

Inca Trail

Despite the difficult geography of Tahuantinsuyo, it was interconnected by a splendid network of roads that was accompanied by bridges, dairy farms and deposits.

On the subject of roads, it is ancient, it has its origins in the Chavín, Moche, Nazca and Recuay cultures, what the Incas did was clean the roads and rehabilitate them again.

The Incas did not invent this path, it was a way of organizing the territorial space of the old Tahuantinsuyo of the Huari culture that was much smaller and that little by little was consolidating with the capacity of the sum of efforts of the entire Andean population.

There are Inca roads from Ecuador to Argentina of different types and forms, the work of the Inca empire was to organize and manage it politically in such a way that Cusco was the center of a distribution system where the tambos housed the Inca, his army, to its officials and to the chasquis that it was the visible face of an efficient post office network that carried state information to all corners of the empire.

Camino del Inca – Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu Inca Architecture

Most likely it was a political and religious administrative center, the Spanish chroniclers do not mention it, this is because it was only known by the Inca rulers and by the panaca of Pachacutec, a panaca was a royal family, the extended family of the dead monarch.

It is also said that it was a place of refuge and defense in case of an invasion and this is feasible because it is located in a high and rugged area where it is reached by secret roads, it has terraces, platforms, irrigation systems, warehouses, artisan workshops and more.

Ollantaytambo Fortress

The archaeological complex of Ollantaytambo is located 80 km from the city of Cusco in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, it is an immense place that was an Inca religious, agricultural and military center.

It has vestiges of temples and platforms and is confused with the town of the same name that today exists in the lower part, really an extraordinary example of an Inca town center that continues to this day and this is due, among other factors, to the fact that many channels of Inca times are today fully operational. Ollantaytambo is a remarkable example of military architecture for its walls built with huge blocks.

Fortaleza de Ollantaytambo

Coricancha or Koricancha

The coricancha, the temple of the sun was the religious center of the entire empire in this system that was organized also had a system of imaginary lines that are the axes that organized the coricancha as a central point and started radially aligning the huacas in a religious system such as part of their worldview of the world.


Almost all the things that the Incas built are in some way a continuation of what already existed in the Huari Era, so separating the Huari culture from the Incas is becoming increasingly difficult, outside of what we previously knew to be Basically ceramics and textiles, but now the use of quipus, drainage systems are added, the hydraulic system of Huari is very similar to that of the Incas.