Impressed on the Pampas de Jumana, between the towns of Nazca and Palpa, are the remarkable and mystifying Nazca Lines. Some 300 ancient geoglyphs, which date between 400 and 650 AD, depict various figures, with five being the most prominent; the hummingbird, the monkey, the spider, the hands and the astronaut. Created by the Nazca people, no one truly knows why the geoglyphs were made. While some believe they are related to astronomy, others say they were created as a way for the tribe to connect with their gods in the sky. Needless to say, the Nazca Lines have kept archaeologists guessing for decades and along with the region’s immense culture and history, there is so much left to learn.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, described as ‘the most outstanding group of geoglyphs anywhere in the world’, the Nazca Lines cover a staggering 1 000 square kilometres (386 square miles). More than 800 straight lines, 300 geometric shapes and 70 animal, plant and human designs were drawn into Nazca’s chalk over a 1 000-year period. Impressively, many of the figured drawings stretch up to 365 m (1 200 ft) in length with the best way to view and appreciate the sheer scale of the Nazca Lines is from above on a scenic flight.