This Day in History: Machu Picchu Is 'Discovered' July 24, 1911 Searching for the famous "lost" cities of the Inca empire in Peru, American archeologist Hiram Bingham and his team laid eyes upon the ancient settlement for the first time.
Guided by locals and an 11-year-old boy, the team scaled the mountain ridge of Machu Picchu ("Old Peak" in the Quechua language).
The multi-level site extends over five miles.
Thought to have been a summer retreat for Inca leaders, its many levels are connected by more than 3,000 stone steps.
Since its "discovery" by the American team, Machu Picchu has become one of the world's top tourist destinations.
More than 300,000 people travel to the ancient marvel every year.