Arequipa, or “La Ciudad Blanca” as it’s been nicknamed, is the third most visited destination in Peru and for good reason. Distinguished for its beautiful buildings, countless attractions, and volcano-ringed backdrop, there is plenty to see and do in Arequipa.
Here are four places you shouldn’t miss during your visit:
The Cathedral Basilica
Built in the 15th century from volcanic stone and brick, the Cathedral Basilica is a stunner. The Cathedral is considered the main sanctuary of the city, occupying the entire north edge of the Plaza de Armas. Make this your first stop when visiting Arequipa or plan to check it out around mealtime, as it’s also near many of the city’s best restaurants.
The Yanahuara Viewpoint
The Yanahuara viewpoint offers a spectacular panoramic view of the city and its surrounding volcanoes (Misit, Chachani, and Pichu Pichu). While there, be sure to also look for the famous engravings etched into the walls that surround the viewpoint. They were put there by two of Arequipa’s most famous homegrown wordsmiths, Mariano Melgar and Mario Vargas Llosa.
The Yura Hot Springs
Located 27 kilometers from the city, on the slopes of the Chachani volcano, the Yura Hot Springs are an excellent idea after a Colca Canyon or volcano trek. There are a total of 18 thermal baths, each said to have therapeutic properties. The Yura Hot Springs attract thousands of tourists each year. They’re a can’t-miss during your trip to Arequipa.
The Colca Canyon
The Colca Canyon is a dream for trekking enthusiasts. It’s the world’s second deepest canyon, which translates to day-long steep descents and equally long steady climbs, with a few flat stretches thrown into the mix. As a Colca Canyon trek is a popular activity for tourists in Arequipa, it’s a good idea to book your trek in advance of your arrival to Arequipa. You can book through a travel agency or visit explorandes.com and we can arrange all of the details for you. For a sample itinerary, click here.
Arequipa is a picturesque Peru destination with more than a few worthwhile tourist attractions to scope out, ranging from stunning colonial architecture to an assortment of trekking options. If you’d like to know more and learn prices for some of these attractions, please contact us.