WGBH Openvault

NOVA; Ghosts of Machu Picchu

Green Label

License Clip

More material is available from this program at the WGBH Archive. If you are a researcher interested in accessing the collection at WGBH, please email archive_requests@wgbh.org.

Undigitized item: Request Digitization

Untranscribed item: Request Transcription

Ghosts of Machu Picchu
Program Number


Series Description

Premiered March 1974 NOVA is a general-interest documentary series that addresses a single science issue each week. Billed as "science adventures for curious grown-ups" when it first aired in March, 1974, NOVA continues to offer an informative and entertaining approach to a challenging subject. 1996 marked NOVA's 23rd season, which makes it the longest-running science program on national television. It is also one of television's most acclaimed series, having won every major television award, most of them many times over. Series release date: 3/3/1974

Program Description

Perched atop a mountain crest, mysteriously abandoned more than four centuries ago, Machu Picchu is the most famous archeological ruin in the Western hemisphere and an iconic symbol of the power and engineering prowess of the Inca. In the years since Machu Picchu was discovered by Hiram Bingham in 1911, there have been countless theories about this "Lost City of the Incas," yet it remains an enigma. Why did the Incas build it on such an inaccessible site, clinging to the steep face of a mountain? Who lived among its stone buildings, farmed its emerald green terraces, and drank from its sophisticated aqueduct system? NOVA joins a new generation of archeologists as they probe areas of Machu Picchu that haven't been touched since the time of the Incas and unearth burials of the people who built the sacred site. "Ghosts of Machu Picchu" explores the trail of clues that began on that fateful day in 1911 and continues to the present.

A Production of NOVA and National Geographic Television © 2009 NGHT, Inc. and WGBH Educational Foundation.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Chicago: “NOVA; Ghosts of Machu Picchu,” WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 19, 2018, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_5BDB88EA0BE14B0A9048B3D4C4C1ECA0.
MLA: “NOVA; Ghosts of Machu Picchu.” WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 19, 2018. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_5BDB88EA0BE14B0A9048B3D4C4C1ECA0>.
APA: NOVA; Ghosts of Machu Picchu. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_5BDB88EA0BE14B0A9048B3D4C4C1ECA0
If you have more information about this item, we want to know! Please contact us, including the URL.