Tourism entrepreneur wants Chavín to become eighth wonder of the world

Family-owned tour operator Jamanca Tours presented a resolution that has the objective to include the archaeological site of Chavín de Huantar to the list of Seven Classic Wonders of the Ancient World and to bring the Raimondi Stela back to the site. Jamanca truly believes that Chavín has what it takes to be added to a list that includes the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, the Colossus of Rhodes and the Lighthouse of Alexandria. On Saturday the 11th of July, Jamanca invited local press, many local mayors of Ancash, and people worried about the culture and identity of Ancash on a tour that showed the worrying state of the archaeological site. Unfortunately not many of the invitees took the invitation seriously as only a small group of 20 people went to the site located in the Conchucos Valley in Ancash.

Chavín de Huantar contains ruins and artifacts constructed in 1200 BC and occupied by later cultures until around 400-500 BC by the Chavín, a major pre-Inca culture. However, to be included in the list lots of work needs to be done. The circular plaza is in good condition and appears to have been a sacred and ritually important open-air space within a ceremonial centre, but the old and new temple are completely covered with dirt because of the 1970 earthquake in Peru. The site holds a large amount of geographical and religious significance, which may be one of the reasons why the location was used as a large ceremonial centre and a centre of power for the Chavín culture. John Rick of Stanford University has studied the site with laser scanning in an attempt to determine whether it was planned by the elite or had resulted from some grassroots religious fervor. There are still many undiscovered secrets at Chavín de Huantar but only investment from the local or national government and donations can make Chavín a true tourist attraction. Highlight and main attraction of the site is still the Lanzón Stela, which is assumed to be a supreme deity. Another sacred object that belongs to Chavín culture is to be found in the Museo Nacional de Arqueología Antropología e Historia del Perú in Lima nowadays. The broken Raimondi Stela is a sacred object and a major piece of art of the Chavín culture and the Jamanca family said that they will do everything to bring the Stela Raimondi masterpiece back to where it belongs.

Sadly, people working at the site told The Huaraz Telegraph that tourist numbers are falling rapidly and that money is needed to keep the site open to tourists, much more money is needed to cover the temples and protect them from the rain and sun. Almost 95% of the site is exposed to sun and rain and due to the lack of maintenance and money Mother Nature is claiming the site and without the help and interest from local authorities, Chavín de Huantar might soon belong to Peru´s ancient history in terms of something that once was. Chavín de Huántar has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and making it the eighth wonder of the world might be a bridge to far at the moment but in terms of history, culture, religion and art it´s definitely worth a shot and would certainly see visitor´s numbers raise again. Chavín de Huantar is containing ruins and artifacts constructed beginning at least by 1200 BC and occupied by later cultures until around 400-500 BC by the Chavín, a major pre-Inca culture and is thus much older than the Hanging Gardens of Babylon or the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus. However to be included to the list lots of work needs to be done. The Circular Plaza is in good condition and seems appears to have been a sacred and ritually important open-air space within a ceremonial centre but the old and new temple are completely covered with dirt because of the 1970 earthquake in Peru. The site holds a large amount of geographical and religious significance which may be one of the reasons why the location was used as a large ceremonial centre and a centre of power for the Chavín culture. John Rick of the Stanford University has studied the site with laser scanning in an attempt to determine whether it was planned by elite or had resulted from some grassroots religious fervor. There are still many undiscovered secrets at Chavín de Huantar but only investment of the local or national government and donations can make Chavín a true tourist attraction. Highlight and main attraction of the site is still the Lanzón Stela which is assumed to be a supreme deity. Unfortunately another sacred object that belongs to Chavín culture is to be found in the Museo Nacional de Arqueología Antropología e Historia del Perú in Lima nowadays. The (broken) Raimondi Stela is a sacred object and a major piece of art of the Chavín culture and the Jamanca family said that they will do everything to bring the Stela Raimondi masterpiece back to where it belongs.

Sadly, people working at the site told The Huaraz Telegraph that tourist numbers are falling rapidly and that money is needed to keep the site open to tourists, much more money is needed to cover the temples and protect them from the rain and sun. Almost 95% of the site is exposed to sun and rain and due to the lack of maintenance and money, Mother Nature is reclaiming the site and without the help but mostly interest of local authorities, Chavín de Huantar might soon belong to Peru´s ancient history in terms of something that once was. Chavín de Huántar has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and making it the eighth wonder of the world might be a bridge to far at the moment but in terms of history, culture, religion and art it´s definitely worth a shot and would certainly see visitor´s numbers raise again.

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