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Revash - Ruin Yerbabuena - Peru

High up on a mountain, a group of white and red buildings cling to the cliff face. Some have likened them to the dwellings of the U.S. Southwest town of Pueblos. But these were no apartment houses for the living: they are chullpas (mausoleums), built by Chachapoya people during the Late Intermediate Period, probably in the 12th and 13th centuries. Constructed of stone, adobe mud and straw with a smooth plaster finish, some of the structures stand two-stories tall.

By the time French archaeologists Henri and Paule Reichlen excavated here in 1948, the tombs had already been looted, except one lower chamber. The Reichlens recovered the skeletons of one infant and 11 adults, along with a quantity of bone tools, pottery, musical instruments, combs and feather ornaments. One kilometer away (0.6 mi), they found a cave containing the remains of about 200 individuals, which was sealed due to an earthquake in the 1970s.

As you climb, you can see at least seven other chullpa groups on the surrounding cliffs. Soon you arrive at Revash, its buildings marred by graffiti and scattered with bones. It is now forbidden to enter the site itself.


On the road to Santo Tomás

Yerbabuena, Peru


Getting There

Take a combi or truck from Yerbabuena to the village of Santo Tomás. From there, it is approximately a three hour walk. Alternatively, a tour to Revash can be arranged in Chachapoyas.

Travel Tips:


Price Description:

Relative price: Free

Travel Skills: intermediate/somewhat difficult.

You Need to Bring:

Take plenty of water, sun block and hat, as there is no shade along the road or trail.

By Lorraine Caputo

Upon re-declaring her independence at age 29, Lorraine Caputo packed her trusty Rocinante (so her knapsack's called) and began...

27 Apr 2012

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