Chinchero, Maras & Moray (optional hike)
Enjoy a fascinating private guided tour to the local village of Chinchero renowned for its archaeological site and colorful market (best on Sunday), the Inca terraces of Moray and the astounding salt pans of Maras.
Start the day by visiting the unique Incan terraces of Moray, where well preserved circular terraces are built in descending layers down into natural valleys. Historians believe that these terraces were likely used as a location for experimentation with farming and altitude, moving plants from terrace to terrace so that they acclimatise to either increased or decreased elevations. Walk along the very terraces where the Incans once flourished before heading to Chinchero.
The town of Chinchero is small in scale but big on charm! Explore the well preserved Incan terraces that can be found here along with the town's colonial era adobe church. Chinchero is also known for it's colorful market and the use of traditional weaving techniques that are used to produce textiles for sale. Learn about the natural sources of different pigments and how alpaca wool is dyed and woven into textiles in a demonstration led by the women of Chinchero.
Lastly, you'll visit the amazing salt pans of Maras. Centuries ago, Incan people discovered salt water naturally seeping from the mountain side near Maras, and began to create man-made salt pans, allowing the water to evaporate and the salt to be harvested. Now, salt pans spread as far as the eye can see! See first hand how salt is harvested and collected for everyday use. During dry season (May-September) the salt pans turn bright white and glitter with layers of salt accumulating in the pans - it is truly stunning!
This area can also be explored by mountain bike. It’s an incredibly scenic ride with the Andes for background of this fascinating towns.