Colonial charm in Maras, in Peru’s Urubamba Valley


Small town life
The village of Maras must be traveled by foot. With each step, we come across astounding stone arches in the middle of the dusty streets that recount tales of glory of the inhabitants during Colonial times.

On Jerusalem street, which takes you to the main square, what stands out most are the facades with elaborate beams and sills with coats of arms with the symbols of their former owners.

The peaceful rhythm of this small town allows you to take the time to calmly observe the Yucay valley and the landscape that surrounds it.

If you earn the inhabitant’s trust, you will be able to get to see the other unknown charms of their musicians and artists.

Recently, the name Maras has begun to have more presence due to the lodges that the community of Misminay has managed to successfully install. They offer participatory tourism (in coordination with the Condor Travel agency) where visitors can participate in weaving workshops and agricultural work.

Another novelty that this route offers is that the famous salt mines of Maras now offer the chance to accompany the locals in their daily salt collecting tasks.

Near Maras, you will also find the Moray terraces which are considered to be prehispanic labs where the Inca crops were studied. So if you’re in the area, make sure to take the time to make a stop in Maras to admire a place that hides and authentic beauty that goes back to its ancient origins amongst its rows of white houses with tiled roofs and a unique view of the valley and the Andes.

http://filer.livinginperu.com/travel/travel-cusco-peru9.jpg540360Colonial charm in Maras, in Peru's Urubamba Valley
Next to Maras are the famous salt mines. (Carsten Korch photo) click to enlarge
http://filer.livinginperu.com/travel/cusco-travel-peru2.jpg1200656Colonial charm in Maras, in Peru's Urubamba Valley
The Moray terraces. (Photo: Robert Kittilson, unpavedsouthamerica.com) click to enlarge

Getting there

Maras is 2 kilometers from the Cusco Urubamba highway.

Lodging: There are no big hotels in Maras. Visitors generally stay the night in Urubamba. However, there are lodges in Misminay (between Maras and Moray) organized by Condor Travel. (condortravel.com)