A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America
Exploring Peru's Cliff Cemeteries
The Chachapoya people of northern Peru, who flourished in the tropical highland Andes from about 500 to 1500 A.D., created cliffside cemeteries to house their dead. With the support of local communities and landowners, University of Central Florida bioarchaeologist J. Marla Toyne has led a team that explored two of these sites, La Petaca and Diablo Wasi. To reach these cemeteries, the archaeologists worked with Asociación Ukhupacha, a Spanish spelunking group, to rappel down 300-foot cliffs. These images of the fieldwork are courtesy of J. Marla Toyne and were taken by Esteve Ribera.