Pukara (Aymara and Quechuan "fortress", hispanicized spellings pucara, pucará) is a ruin of the fortifications made by the natives of the central Andean cultures (that is to say: from Ecuador to Central Chile and the Argentine Northwest) and particularly to those of the Inca Empire. The Spanish also referred to Mapuche earthen forts in the Arauco War by this term.
Furthermore, one of the most refined branches of the Chavín culture is sometimes referred to as "Pukara culture" or "Pukara style". It seems to have been a foundation of the later Wari Empire and Tiwanaku culture.
Today, the term is commonly found in toponyms of the Andes region, like for the pukaras of Andalicán, Pucará de Angol, Camiña, Cañete[verification needed], Nama, Quiapo, Tilcara, Turi, Pucara del Cerro La Muralla, Pukara of La Compañía, Pukara de Lasana, Pukará de Quitor and Puka Pukara.