Huaca Pucllana is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Lima. It is located in the tourist district of Miraflores. It was an urban center from the Lima culture, which occupied the place between 200 AD and 700 AD It was also occupied by other contemporary cultures such as the ‘Huari’ and ‘Ychma’. In addition to the archaeological site, it offers a site museum with the discoveries found in the place. They also offer night tours that are liked by national and foreign public.
All about the huaca Pucllana
Huaca Pucllana is an archaeological site from the Lima culture, the first inhabitants of the city whose occupation dates from 200 AD to 700 AD
It was an urban and, above all, ceremonial center with squares, patios, stairs and platforms made mainly of adobe. It is the best-researched archaeological site in the city. It is in charge of the Ministry of Culture of Peru and the Municipality of Miraflores.
Its high (25 meters) and well-preserved main pyramid stands out where religious ceremonies were held. This pyramid belongs to the heyday of the Lima culture. A few centuries later, between AD 800 and AD 900, the site was used as a cemetery by the Wari culture.
Finally, the place was occupied by the Ychma culture who used the huaca Pucllana as a village. Its name was taken from historical documents that mention that the curaca Pedro Chumbi Charna was the owner of said lands called ‘Pullana or Puliana’.
Huaca Pucllana covers an area of approximately 5 hectares. Previously it occupied a larger space, however, the growth of the city meant that some modern buildings were built on these spaces.
Due to its value and modern museum and facilities, Huaca Pucllana has become one of the best archaeological sites in the city of Lima. It receives thousands of tourists every year. There are different services including tourist guides in English, French, Japanese and Spanish.
Huaca Pucllana is located in the heart of the Miraflores, the space more touristic of the city of Lima.
His exact address is Calle General Borgoño, table 8, Miraflores – Lima.
How to get there from Miraflores?
From the central park of Miraflores (Kennedy Park) you can reach Huaca Pucllana on foot or by taxi service (cost of 3 dollars approximately).
From the center of Lima you can reach the district of Miraflores through a taxi or with a public transport service (the famous blue corridor) for a cost of 1 sol 50 cents. That’s less than $ 1.
History of the huaca Pucllana
The main temples and squares of the Huaca Pucllana were built by the Lima culture that inhabited the Lurín and Chancay valley between 200 AD and 700 AD The constructions of the main structures date from the heyday of this culture, approximately between 500 AD and 700 AD
Later, the huaca Pucllana was occupied by the Huari civilization, which occupied the Rímac valley between 800 AD and 1,000 AD This empire encompassed much of the Peruvian coast and the southern highlands. It even reached regions of the jungle. Its capital was in Ayacucho.
Huaca Pucllana was abandoned and later besieged by the Huari who built cemeteries for the elite there. These tombs were individual or collective. They were accompanied by offerings of ceramics, textiles, and more. There is even evidence of human offerings for the tombs of the Huari aristocracy.
After the mysterious fall of the Wari empire, Huaca Pucllana was inhabited by fishermen and farmers belonging to the Ychma culture (1000 AD – 1400 AD) who had the sanctuary of Pachacamac as their main ceremonial center . The Ychma tried to recover part of the old structures of the place. However, its buildings were precarious. Vessels and even a cemetery have been found from this period.
The research works in the huaca Pucllana were carried out mainly after the second half of the 20th century. In 1981, an ambitious research, conservation and enhancement project began, led by Dr. Isabel Flores. The Huaca Pucllana site museum was founded in 1984. In 1987 the huaca was declared an ‘Intangible archaeological zone’.
In 2017, Huaca Pucllana was declared a National Cultural Heritage. Currently the site is a modern cultural space that has all the necessary services for an educational and enjoyable visit. It is one of the best tourist attractions in the city of Lima.
The great pyramid of Huaca Pucllana
The route through the huaca Pucllana follows a set of squares, walls and passageways in the center of which the great pyramid stands out. This building, undoubtedly the most important of the archaeological site, is made up of seven levels made of adobe and stone.
The first level shows a large square. The second shows a patio with sidewalks, altars and a set of holes where offerings were deposited. The third level shows a platform with a ramp system. The fourth level also shows a patio with sidewalks and a set of yellow stairs that lead to the fifth level. This also has a patio with sidewalks separated by a wall. The following levels are partially excavated as they are in poor condition as a result of the passage of the Wari culture.
The site museum
Huaca Pucllana has a modern and well-conditioned on-site museum. It shows a collection of 76 archaeological objects found during investigations at the site. They are distributed chronologically to explain didactically the evolution of the inhabitants of Lima and, particularly, the Huaca Pucllana.
Likewise, the museum has didactic material (panels, maps, photographs) that give an account of the activities of the Lima, Wari and Ychma cultures that inhabited the place.
The tour of the museum precedes the circuit through the archaeological site. Huaca Pucllana also has models that graphically explain the dimensions of the place during the occupation of the Lima culture.
Services and other activities
The native flora and fauna park – This area shows how the products that were cultivated and worked during the Lima culture continue to be used by the people of Lima today. This includes a sample of flora and fauna such as: the prickly pear, the corn, the pacae, the llama, the vicuña, the guinea pig and even the Peruvian dog.
Handicraft store – The site includes a handicraft store where ceramics, textiles and even metallurgical objects are sold with details similar to those found in Huaca Pucllana.
Huaca Pucllana Restaurant – The restaurant on site offers a cozy atmosphere that harmonizes with the archaeological site. The dishes are prepared by professional chefs and include the best of Peruvian cuisine, one of the best on the planet.
How much does it cost to go?
These are the entrance prices to Huaca Pucllana:
- Adults in general: 15 Peruvian soles.
- Children from 5 to 12 years old: 7.50 Peruvian soles.
- Secondary education students: 7.50 Peruvian soles.
- University students: 7.50 Peruvian soles.
- Children under 5 years old: free admission.
The opening hours are Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 9 in the morning until 3.30 in the afternoon.
More information about the huaca Pucllana
At the entrance to the museum there are tourist guides who offer their services for an additional cost. There are even guide services in different languages such as: English, French, Japanese and more. Likewise, all visitors must wait for some time at the door since every 30 minutes the obligatory route begins with a guide.
Huaca Pucllana was one of the most important religious sites in Lima in ancient Peru. The most important temple, without a doubt, was the religious sanctuary of Pachacamac, located in the Lurín valley.
Most of the ‘City Tour Lima’ services include a visit to Huaca Pucllana. They also include a visit to the main historical attractions of the city such as: the Cathedral, the main square de Lima and more.
Since 2016 Huaca Pucllana receives special night visits. These special circuits are made thanks to an important set of lights that fill the place with beauty.
The authorities of the huaca also implemented workshops for the little ones, such as: the ‘little archaeologists’ workshop, the ‘storyteller’ workshop, the ‘adobitos’ workshop and more.