The Peruvian coastal plain in South America is home to a wonder of archaeology. The ground is scarred by images, or geoglyphs, known as the Nazca lines, thought to have been constructed by the people of Nazca between 500 BCE and 500 CE.
The ancient artworks – most easily viewed from the air – were created by methodically removing dark-coloured gravel from the surface to reveal lighter material below. The plains’ unique climate has preserved the lines for thousands of years. Each year, the region receives just 20 minutes of rainfall on average, and the ground is mostly stone and gravel, which prevents the striking images from eroding in the wind.
Going on a Nazca safari…
Dog – This 51m (167ft) canine is thought to be an image of an ancestor of the hairless Peruvian dog. This was kept by the Nazca people as a pet and used as a watchdog.
Spider – An impressive 45m (150ft) in length, this Nazca arachnid was one of the very first figures to be studied in the region by scientists back in the Thirties.
Hummingbird – The Nazca hummingbird measures 97m (318ft) from beak to tail and was carved on a raised plateau, making it one of the most prominent of the animals.