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Vilcabamba where the Inca of Tupac, Lives On

Updated on October 30, 2011
The Conquistadors
The Conquistadors
The Final Assault
The Final Assault
Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu


The last known leader of the Inca was Tupac Amaru.

Tupac, after the deaths of his two older siblings, was the third son to rule the city, known only as Vilcabamba, where his father Manco retreated to, from the Conquistadores in 1536.

From their Citadel, deep in the Vilcabamba valley, the family of rulers had been fighting a resistance war against the Spanish since 1536.

In 1572, a new Viceroy to Peru ordered a final assault on Vilcabamba. This military action was a success and Tupac was taken to Cuzco, where he was beheaded.

No maps were drawn, or at least none have been found, showing the exact location of Vilcabamba.

The Citadel, as the last retreat of the Inca, is said to have a vast collection of Gold but has never been found again.

When in 1911, Hiram Bingham found Machu Picchu, he at first thought it to be Vilcabamba. This however, has later been shown, not necessarily the case, as it differed from the written reports the Conquistadors had made.

Since 1911, five other cities have been rediscovered.

In one instance, a Peruvian army Brigade on sighting a group of imposing ruins was forbidden access by some hostile Paucapuris Indians.

The Paucapuris Tribe claim to be the legitimate heirs of the Incas and guardians of Vilcabamba. They also claim, all the riches now lay at the bottom of a lake, that they alone are allowed access to.

The Peruvian Government, rightly, have refused to announce which set of ruins, if any, are Vilcabamba. They say they can not do this until all the cities have been properly excavated and studied.

Has the last Inca secret been found or does their soul still “live on” in still another city not yet found?


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    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      A very interesting period.

    • profile image

      gogogo 6 years ago

      Excellent article, I have always enjoyed history and stories of the past. Thanks for sharing