In 1600 a missionary reported seeing a large "city of gold" in the region where Paititi is believed to have been built, according to archival records discovered by an Italian archaeologist in 2001.
However, the location of the newfound site falls counter to where historical records indicate Paititi should be, Solís said.
Officials were nonetheless intrigued by the possibilities, he added.
The first task will be to determine if the newfound ruins are the work of the Inca or pre-Inca ethnic groups, Solís said.
(Read related story: "80 Ancient 'Cloud Warrior' Skeletons Found in Peru Fort" [September 26, 2007].)
Gregory Deyermenjian, a U.S.-based psychologist and explorer who has led many expeditions to investigate the Paititi legend, said many people in the tourism-rich region of Cusco have embraced the legend as a business promotion.
But he said the claims could have merit, as there are still many important sites to be found.
"It is a bit off the beaten path but still within the Inca's reach," Deyermenjian said. "I'm very interested to know more."
Daniel Gade, professor emeritus in geography at the University of Vermont, cautioned about jumping to conclusions.
"Paititi is frequently the first thing people mention when something like this is found," Gade said, adding that there are many ruins in the jungle regions of the area.
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