Moray and Maras in the Sacred Valley, Peru are further off the beaten track for sure. If you have a couple of hours to spare and are up for adventure, I think these places are definitely worth a visit for something different.
Mysterious Moray… While the purpose of these circular terraces is not confirmed, it’s suggested that this site was an ‘agricultural laboratory’ of the Incas. Each ring has its own microclimate (there’s supposedly a 15 degree difference in temperature between the top and bottom rings), and archaeologists have found evidence of soils from different areas of the Inca empire.
Las Salineras just outside of Maras is composed of thousands of salt ponds, cradled in a valley between the impressive mountains of the Andes. Even from the mirador (viewpoint), they’re already impressive. Walking amongst them though is another thing entirely. If you’re lucky enough, you might even be able to spot some of the locals harvesting the salt – you can even buy some from the many stores at the entrance.
If you’re looking to spend a day in the Sacred Valley doing something a little unusual, Maras + Moray is the perfect combination. I took a colectivo from Urubamba, asking to get off at the road to Maras. Here, there were taxis waiting to take me to these two places. (I believe you can also take a colectivo to this same turnoff straight from Cusco.) It’s worth the effort to get there, I guarantee!