The Andean Culture- Part 4


Another beautiful backdrop for a family picture as we continued our touring around Cusco.


In a little town called, Chincheros, we relaxed as we watched a knitting demonstration.


At one point these three women, dressed in native Andean clothing, sang us a song in Quechuan.

They use native plants, seeds, purple corn (which is also made into a drink), berries, etc. to make natural dyes for their alpaca wool.


After the demonstration we bought some of their handmade items for sale and then they dressed us up for a picture.


After we waved farewell, we drove quite a ways to our next stop.


The Maras salt mines, also called, Las Salinas de Maras, were amazing to see up close. We were now 29 miles outside of Cusco, within the Sacred Valley.


Would you believe there are at least 3000 man-made salt wells or pools?


This warm and salty little stream flows directly into the pools.


So the salt comes from a subterranean stream named, Qoripujio, which as been around forever it seems. The sun evaporates the water leaving salt crystals behind which are then harvested by local farmers.


Notice how the pools are terraced. They are not very deep. It was so much fun to walk around the edge and take it all in.


Our final stop of the day was Moray. This is believed to have once been an Inca agricultural center.


The Incas were terrace farmers as I’ve probably mentioned already. Apparently they had a very practical irrigation system in place here once upon a time.


The mysterious thing about these circular terraced ruins is that the temperature becomes quite a bit warmer at the bottom than it is from the top. Marissa and Marcus ventured down, with our tour guide, to experience this for themselves.


Both Marissa and Marcus said it was indeed much warmer at the bottom.


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