Arequipa is famous for its delicious cuisine, distinct colonial charm, and beautiful buildings made of white volcanic stone.
Arequipa was founded in 1540 by a handful of conquistadores.
The ‘White City’ of Arequipa, at more than 7,500 feet (2,300 meters), is often regarded as Peru’s most beautiful city. Set against a backdrop of snow-capped mountains, the city center is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The historic center of Arequipa retains a colonial atmosphere, with churches, mansions, convents, and squares of great architectural interest. There is also a thriving gastronomic scene here to rival the capital city. The rural part of Arequipa is home to beautiful terraces, Spanish mills, palaces, and unobstructed views of the volcanoes
We thoroughly recommend a tour of the Santa Catalina convent to explore the alleys, streets, and cloisters of this walled retreat within the city, which, at its height was home to around 150 nuns and some 300 servants, some of whom were slaves.
Arequipa is also often a stopping-off point for those looking to visit the Colca Canyon (Cañon del Colca), which is about a four hour’s drive from the city.
The region has a semi-arid and temperate climate. The rainy season begins in January and ends in March, but Arequipa has an average of 300 days sunshine a year!