We had the opportunity to take a wonderful half-day tour to the Maras salt mines in Peru, and I must say, seeing salt being harvested by local workers was something my husband and I will remember for a long time. You wouldn’t think that a tour of salt production would be anything to write home about, but the combination of the mountains and patchwork look of the salt ponds was really unique. Plus, the bus ride down was the most terrifying 30 minutes of my life so there’s that. Let’s just say I’m glad I waited to google “Peru bus crashes” until after we had arrived back at the hotel, safe and sound.
Salt water springs feed the pools and during the tour, our guide kept telling us to dip our hands into the narrow, rushing rivers. He explained that the water should taste sweet like ice cream, but it was basically potent salt water. Being that I love to douse all of my food in salt — glorious salt! — I could have submerged my entire face and stayed there for a while, but that’s probably weird. We actually saw a little Peruvian girl dip her entire Coke bottle into the spring and fill it up to the brim, so hopefully she didn’t get too dehydrated later on…
After wandering around the area and taking plenty of photos of the Peruvian salt, it started to rain and our thoughts automatically shifted to the bus ride back to the top of the mountains. When all of the roads consist of dirt and gravel and are as narrow as a small vehicle, an old bus taking a sharp turn during a downpour should seriously be illegal. Luckily the rain tapered off while we were purchasing bags of flour salt and pink salt (flour salt floats on top of the ponds and rose salt is underneath), then we snacked on massive kernels of corn, covered in salt, of course. And survived the ride back up.
As you’ve probably realized from this post, I’m deathly afraid of heights, but I’m also a firm believer that you should step out of your comfort zone when you travel. Yes, I wanted to cry and scream and punch Brandon in the face while I was a passenger on that death trap (dramatic much?), but terrifying bus rides are basically inevitable no matter where you go. I rode up to Hitler’s Eagle Nest on a bus that enjoyed playing chicken with the edge of the summit, Brandon and I booked a horribly scary bus tour up to Delphi, Greece, and Machu Picchu required a bus ride, too. So. Many.
Are you afraid of anything when you travel?
Filed Under: Peru, Travel