Salt mines of Salinas
Maras Travel Blog› entry 10 of 26 › view all entries
We drove some more windy roads and saw locals out with their animals or tending their crops. In the rain. The salt mines of Salinas (or Salineras?) were not covered by the Cusco ticket but was only S/5. Our driver stopped at the top so we could get a nice overview. It was amazing. A warm spring comes out of the mountain and flows through little pools created on the hillside. Salt deposits on the edges of the pools when the water evaporates. There is the main overview from the hilltop drive and then a smaller look out point near the parking area. You can walk along a narrow ledge a ways into the salt mines, but there really isn't much for hiking here. You can see where the spring comes out of the hillside, but you can't get down to it, however you can walk right along the stream as if flows through the mines.
It was still raining but we walked along the little channel partway into the mines. It was very cool. We passed a couple of people and had to step off onto the narrow ledges between pools to pass. We got wet and muddy but that was part of the fun. I picked up a piece of salt and it just disintegrated in my hand. I guess that's why no one is mining the salt on a rainy day ;) The water from the spring really was warm, too. I bought a chunk of salt for S/2 (less than $1US) but it didn’t look like it even came from there. The salt mines were really cool but it was near meal time so we left.