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Maras Salt

Ancient Salt Mines of Maras, Peru

The salt mines of Maras are a remnant of the Inca period. They have been operated since at least 1450 ad.

About ten million years ago, an inland sea covered much of the Andes of Peru and Bolivia. Plate tectonics has changed the scene. The water went down to swell the oceans. The evidence from this period are Lake Titicaca and the Salt mines of Maras.

In the Valley of Urubamba, the salt mines of Maras cover more than three miles on a small catchment area of approximately 700m long and 150m wide suspended terraces on the flanks of the mountain. Still used today, salt mining continues in the traditional way.

The salt mines of Maras are now being operated by an association of 300 families. Each has between 3 and 10 pools.


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