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Hatun Machay Bosque de Piedras

Geology & archeology

Hatun Machay Bosque de Piedras

A full two hour drive south from Huaraz, this archeological site is called a “bosque de piedras” or forest of stones. The geological formations are reason enough to spend the day there, though the cryptic petroglyphs also attract visitors.

Bosque de Piedras Petroglyph

The pre-Inca carvings include geometric shapes as well as animal and human figures. There are also a few pictographs, painted with red pigment that has survived centuries. In several cases, the petroglyphs retain paint, like the one below.

Bosque de Piedras Entrance Sign

The area is not frequently visited, so chances are you’ll have the whole place to yourself. If you don’t have a car, it may take some time to find a taxi driver in Huaraz who will agree to take you. Expect to pay for a full day of the driver’s time.

Getting there

The site is on the west side of route 3N, the same road that runs through the Callejon de Huaylas past Carhuaz, Huaraz and Recuay. While only two hours from Huaraz, it’s a five and a half hour drive north of Lima.

>1200: Pre-Inca Times


Huaraz & The Central Sierra

Text © Heather Jasper

Images by Lisa Sims