Ok, we’ve been doing a lot of stuff and splitting blogs into two helps keep the ipad operational. We like to upload a lot of photos and sometimes too many photos equates to ipad crashing… Yeterday we went to Moray and the Salineras Salt Mines (started by Inca). These are all local activities in/around Urabamba so it was a good local day. We ended the day eating dinner in a great place (Kampu) that serves pizzas at night, but also he makes great local curries. We all had a great meal – which we ranked in one of our top 10 meals on our entire trip so far.
Moray was the Inca research labratory for foods to be grown in the region. The built these enormous circles that step down into the middle. If you notice the steps that you can climb up/down into the circles they are pretty smart – they are staggered so you walk in a straight line on each level – so stairs on the terrace. This place is high on the edge of the valley and surrounded by brilliant fields of wheat and Quinoa. It’s a pretty neat place to go see and visit. It’s remarkable how the Inca society was able to have all these things in the year 1400-1500’s. In this way they could feed the people, know what to grow on what levls and when to grow it. The interesting thing about the terraces is that the rocks heat up during the day, acting as a heater during the night when it is very cold in the valley – very smart. Each terrace that you see is built using four layers – at the bottom rocks, then gravel, then sand then finally soil on top. Sort of how you would make a planting box system today.
Salineras Salt Mine
This has to be one of the coolest things we have seen on our trip. A long time ago someone discovered that a small stream in this valley produced salt rich (60% salt) water. They built this huge area of terrace/pools and little water streams to fill the terraces with salt water. They then let the water evaporate and then you get left with salt. You may see “peruvian pink salt” in stores – this is where this comes from. We walked around for about an hour – the salt vapor is a bit intense and we smelled like salt later. This place is an unbelievable engineering feat.
Dinner – Kampu – Urabamba
So we met the owner of ampu in Urabamba (Eduardo) the other day and he invited us to his place. Cindy loves curries and he said his were the best – and they were. We were hungry and managed to find our way to his place for a late afternoon lunch/dinner. Thie food is excellent and he is a great guy. He even has a local cat – Nina – that took a liking to Cindy – which of course made us talk about Wilbur a great deal. If you are in Urabamba for even a night this is definately worth the effort and time for a great meal.