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MARAS SALT MINES

100% natural salt with a high mineral content 

URUBAMBA - CUSCO

In the province of Urubamba – Cusco, a mountain is cut into thousands of declining white terraces that seen from above and according to the luminosity at every hour of the day, makeup textures and surprising shades. They are the Salt Mines of Maras from the Community of Maras, located on a hillside of the Qaqawiñay mountain in the middle of the Sacred Valley of the Incas.

Located in the northeast of Maras, “a small town 40 km from Cusco, the Maras Salt Mines are one of the most incredible places in Andean South America, the scene of a pre-Hispanic economic activity that has supported generations of people from native cultures including the Incas“.

Maras Salt Mines are conformed by 4,200 pools, each pool of a few square meters where the saltwater that emanates from a stream that flows from the middle of the mountain and by the effect of the sun crystallizes creating a wonder of nature, the Maras Pink Salt.

Maras Salt Mines are considered as true salt mines. For hundreds of years and we are sure that for hundreds of years more, in this place, a 100% natural salt is produced. The work and care that communities carry out in maintaining artisanal production until today has been fundamental. This has allowed the production of Maras Pink Salt to be economic sustenance for the population of Maras for centuries.

WHY PERUVIAN PINK SALT?

Enter in the debate on what type of salt is better to consume, if Peruvian Pink Salt or regular cooking salt, or if Peruvian Pink Salt and sea salt, even if it is better than Himalayan Salt.

Peruvian Pink Salt, unlike common salt, is a natural salt, with high mineral content and a unique flavor contribution.

Common salt or regular cooking salt is a chemically produced salt, where color, drying, and granulometry is produced, hence the name of Refined Salt.

Sea salt comes from contaminated oceans, without any mineral input.

In the case of Himalayan Salt, its positive points are being a 100% natural salt with a high mineral content, coming from a place with an ancestral history. On the contrary, being a rock salt, it has a hardness that prevents easy digestion, which can even bring kidney problems; the taste is a negative point also knowing that it is the same as common salt.

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HOW IS PERUVIAN PINK SALT EXTRACTED?

Maras – which is 50 kilometers from Cusco and 4,000 meters high – found its good fortune in salt. But how do they produce it? They say that since time immemorial the area has had a spring, which comes out of the middle of the mountain, bringing saltwater. “Water is taken to the pools through channels that run all over the place.” By a process of crystallization through the sun, this water is evaporated giving rise to a unique product, the Peruvian Pink Salt.

The salt cannot be harvested year round. Work can only start once the rainy season is over, which makes the demand for Peruvian Pink Salt even greater.

LEGEND OF THE MARAS SALT MINES

There is a legend that tells that the salty spring that flows from the Mountain are the tears of Ayar Kachi according to Inca mythology, who was one of the 4 brothers who founded the great Inca Empire.

The God Wiraqocha made the 4 brothers come out of a cave to found a great empire; Ayar Kachi threw a stone at the Mountain and his brothers, fearful of his strength and power, tricked him into the cave, preventing him from being the founder of the empire. Ayar Kachi’s tears created the beautiful salt place that covers the mountainside, creating the Maras Salt Mines.

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