WIKI QUOTE ALERT!
Nazca is a city and a system of valleys on the southern coast of Peru, and the name of the region's largest existing town in the Nazca Province. It is also the name applied to the Nazca culture that flourished in the area between 300 BC and AD 800. They were responsible for the Nazca Lines and the ceremonial city of Cahuachi; they also constructed an impressive system of underground aqueducts named Puquios, that still function today.
The city of Nazca is capital of the Nazca Province of the Ica region.
On 12 November 1996 at 11:59 a.m. local time (16:59 GMT time) a heavy earthquake of 6.4 (the center of the earthquake was 7.7 in the sea) destroyed the city of Nasca and its surroundings almost completely. Because it occurred during the day there were only 17 fatalities, but 1,500 people were injured and around 100,000 left homeless. Almost all old houses in bricks were destroyed, but within 12 years Nasca has been completely rebuilt in colored houses with columns, now often multi-stored houses, with a small boulevard in the center.
Since 1997, Nazca has been the location of a major Canadian gold mining operation. The people who were living on the land for the previous 2000 years did not have title to the land, so they were displaced without legal problems. Since then, there have been some attempts to legalize poor citizens' ownership of their land and their fixed property, in response to Hernando de Soto's research on the poor.
The climate of Nazca is just like the climate of Cusco. It is cold during the winter months starting in June and in the summer it is warmer.
Nazca has a small airport, the Maria Reiche Neuman Airport, used mainly for touristic flights over the Nazca lines.
And it was from the Maria Reiche Neuman airport that me, Flo, Rach, Marco, Tyson, Clange, Ryan and Jas, jumped aboard our breathtaking flights over the lines. Having heard mixed reviews from some folk I decided to make up my own mind and thanks to Mum who gifted the experience to me for Christmas I witnessed it first hand and loved every minute as did my fellow passengers. With a slightly dodgy safety record in previous years it was reassuring to find out strict regulations had been put in place to prevent further incidents. This did mean having to jump on scales and having my weight broadcast to all and sundry in the terminal although having gorged on red meat and carbs and binge drunk (dramatic effect mum honest) my way round South America up to this point the news wasn't as bad as I'd expected! After a little pep talk from our pilot and his co-pilot who would be doing the talking and pointing (tick - you just keep an eye on those dials Mr pilot) and pre flight safety checks (tick - no gauge tapping thank you) the pilot opened the throttle and we thundered off down the runway (well as thunderous as a little Cessna can be anyway) and were up in the air whipping round the lines doing 2 passes of each so both sides could see and get pics. So 20 to 30 minutes later having clocked the hummingbird, spider, monkey, fish and bizarrely a spaceman we were hurtling back down the runway safe and sound and full of beans. The following day on our way out of Nazca we stopped at the viewing tower for a slightly less impressive although strangely more vertigo inducing view of three more figures: the lizard, tree and hands (or frog, depending on your point of view).