Maras, Moray, Salineras Tour
This full day tour will give you the opportunity to explore the less visited colonial town of Maras, Inca ruins of Moray, and unique Pre-Inca salt mines of Salineras. Maras and Moray are areas where the Incas cultivated different products, such as potatoes and corn, and you will also see evidence of coca leaf horticulture. These sites are well worth visiting as you will experience first-hand the remarkable Incan engineering and their unique agricultural techniques, such as drainage systems that continue to function to this day. The salt mines or “Salineras” was a very important place for Peru´s ancestors and remains a significant locale for surrounding communities. The salt pools have been passed down from generation to generation and are still to this day maintained by a community, who cultivate the salt and prepare it for purchase. In addition, on this tour you will see fascinating views of local agricultural terrain and the Andes across the valley.
In this lovely one day tour we visit Moray, perhaps the most unusual of the Inca ruins and then descend to Sacred Valley of the Incas, via the salt mines at Salineras. (Departure time from Cusco 9am)
We will pass along Chinchero & continue on to the village of Maras and then to Moray. A pre-Inca site, though used by the Incas, Moray is a series of agricultural terraces which were believed to be an experimental agricultural station for different crop strains.
We spend about one hour exploring these huge ampitheatres before heading back cross country on foot or bike through traditional farmland to the charming village of Maras. Walking along the cusp of the Sacred Valley we are rewarded with views of the opposite snowcapped mountains. We lunch en route.
We visit sleepy, charming Maras before heading downhill to Salineras, sometimes meeting large numbers of donkey trains carrying the salt uphill. Salineras is a collection of watered terraces that take salt from an underground salty stream, which is collected by locals through a fascinating process of evaporation. The pools and salt embankments are an incredible sight against the stunning mountain backdrop.
From Salineras our private transport collects us and returns us to Cusco, via Urubamba (about 2 hours drive).