The Band of Holes in Peru

The Band of Holes in Peru

They look like a giant honeycomb from above, but who made them and why? That has been the dilemma since the band of holes in Peru were discovered in the Pisco valley area.

This is somewhere on the Nazca plateau popularly known to the locals as Monte Sierpe. There are approximately 7,000 holes each measuring about 3 feet wide and 4-7 feet deep.

Many stories told of their origin are just speculations since there is no evidence of a known history explaining how they came to be.

Inca Civilization

Most studies connect this amazing phenomena to the Inca civilization although none of the arising hypotheses have been completely verified yet.

The band of holes became a hot topic for discussion in the early 1930’s when an aerial photograph of this man-made wonder was taken by a pilot and published in National Geographic.

Earlier speculations concluded that these holes were graves pre-dating the Incas and maybe going way back to the Chincha civilization.

More recent times, researchers and archaeologists think that the Incas used these holes to store food.

Supporters of the food storage theory also connect the holes to the ancient Inca taxation system – they believe that the holes were used to measure quantities of goods for barter trade since there was no money system.

The food store theory still holds as true to many because most people looking into the mystery failed to understand why the Incas would build graves to bury their kin in a standing position?


These mysterious holes were built using soil and stones collected from nearby areas since it would have been difficult to dig into the hard underlying rock considering the tech and tools they had back then.

The holes are arranged side by side measuring approximately 20m wide and about a mile long.

Further east of the band of holes are remains of what appears to have been an early settlement of a people long gone.

It’s funny that even the current inhabitants of this area do not have the slightest clue as to why their forefathers came up with this idea?

More Questions Than Answers

As things stand currently, we are left with more questions than answers…

  • Were these holes used for food storage?
  • Were they used to measure barter quantities?
  • Were they graves?
  • Was there a species of giant honey bees or hornets that we don’t know about?
  • Who built the holes and why?

As we continue to search for the truth, it is clear that the band of holes will remain a mystery for years to come.

Since the first ever recorded survey of the area by Victor Wolfgang Von Hagen up to date… nothing concrete has been agreed upon and the stories keep changing with different camps challenging each other as to whom is more closer to the truth.

The band of holes in Peru can be viewed from Google maps by anyone who wants to see the real thing.

Is the truth still out there? Will we ever know the true story behind this mystery?

If you have any thoughts or opinions on the subject we have covered here, please leave them in the comment section below.

4 comments on “The Band of Holes in Peru

  1. Oh this is cool, I have never even heard of the Band of Holes before. I like the idea that it was for food storage. I think often people get really fascinated by such things, they seem so enigmatic, but then it turns out their purpose is just very plain and pragmatic.

    Roughly how old is this site? Your article didn’t mention a date. When were the Incas in existence, 1500AD?

    1. I’m afraid I have no idea James – we wrote the article some time ago now! A simple Google search should give you that answer. I do know that the Inca state was known as the Kingdom of Cusco before 1438…so I think you’re in the right ball park there!

  2. I always loved learning about the Inca. Their achievements were amazing, especially in architecture. But I’d never heard of the Band of Holes until I read this.

    It’s unfortunate the Inca didn’t leave behind many written records. If they had, we might have known why they dug the holes (if they did dig them) but as things are, it might stay a mystery forever.

    Were there any other historical theories apart from the Inca or the Chincha having dug the holes?

    1. Hi Andrew,

      Not that we could find through our research for this article. It’s a good question actually to put to our readers – any of you out there know of historical theories linked to this mystery (that we have not covered in the article?).

      If so, please take the time to leave them in the comment section here!

      Cheers 🙂

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