Arequipa is one of the most beautiful cities in Peru. Embark on a history-filled excursion with our guide around the main square and use the city as a base to embark on adventure tours from Arequipa to the Colca Canyon.
Volcanoes are in sight!
Your visit to Arequipa will be filled with Peruvian cuisine, views of volcanoes and white stone colonial buildings, and in-depth exploration of culture and history through its picturesque streets.
Currently a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the Plaza de Armas, you will see European architectural styles, such as baroque and neoclassical, all with a touch of Andean culture. The best restaurants overlook the Basilica Cathedral, where you’re likely to hear live Peruvian music and have the best views in the city.
El Misti, is a cone-shaped volcano that stands tall and proud in the background of the city of Arequipa. At 19,098 feet (5,822 m) above sea level, it’s impossible not to get a good look at El Misti during your stay in Arequipa. We suggest, a private tour of the city of Arequipa will include a visit to the Yanahuara neighborhood to get the best views of the city of Arequipa framed by its three volcanoes: El Misti, Pichu Pichu, and Chachani.
One of the most important reserves in the country, the Salinas Aguada Blanca National Reserve is a protected park on the route to Arequipa and the Colca Canyon. Here you will find lagoons, wetlands, birds, wild vicuñas, volcanoes, and more throughout the scenic landscapes.
The Santa Catalina Monastery in Arequipa is over 20,000 square miles and is very much a mini-city within a city. In 1579, when it was originally built, it was intended as a monastery for Dominican nuns who built everything they needed within its walls and never left the property.
Juanita’s reputation is due to being one of the best-preserved mummies in the Andes. You can visit his remains at the Museo Santuarios Andinos in Arequipa and learn about his history, his death in the 1400s, and his discovery in 1995 in the snowy mountains of the Andes.
Colca Canyon draws us lush green fields and terraced mountain lodges into the depths of the second deepest canyon in the world. Soak in its natural hot springs, rest in one of the picturesquely landscaped hotels, and watch Andean condors soar through Andean skies.
Chivay is a small town that is considered the gateway to the Colca Canyon. Chivay has an 8th-century Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción located in the main square where you can find villagers in traditional dress and small shops to buy Andean souvenirs.
The cuisine of Arequipa is a delight that cannot be missed on your visit. While all of Peru has delicious food, Arequipa’s secret ingredient is spice. The restaurants where you can try these spicy versions of Peruvian food are known as “picanterías”.
The impressive walls formed with volcanic material are one of the less crowded places to visit in Arequipa, but more impressive. On this tour, you will be able to see the active quarries of Añashuayco and learn how an entire city was built with this material. That is why Arequipa is known as “The White City”.
Located in the department of Arequipa in southern Peru, sharing borders with the departments of Ica, Cusco, Apurímac, Puno, and Moquegua. Its longest border is with the Pacific Ocean.
Tour the city don’t miss the historic Santa Catalina Monastery, spend time in the beautiful central plaza, and learn about Juanita, the Inca Ice Maiden, at the Museo Santuarios Andinos. For lunch, don’t miss the opportunity to try what many consider to be the best local dishes in all of Peru at one of the best restaurants in Arequipa.
Two or three days should be enough to cover the highlights including the Colca Canyon, but you could easily spend a week or more here visiting museums, eating great food, and venturing out into the countryside.
Arequipa sits at 7,660 feet (2,335 m) above sea level and few travelers experience altitude sickness here. However, the road between Arequipa and the Colca Canyon reaches altitudes of 13,100 feet (4,000 m). You’ll notice the difference if you get out of the car and try any strenuous activity, like climbing or running. Stick to the comfort of your car, bus, or van, and you shouldn’t have a problem.
The bus tickets to Arequipa are:
Bus from Lima to Arequipa: 16 to 18 hours in total
Bus from Cusco to Arequipa: 10 hours in total
The following are popular departing bus routes from Arequipa
Bus from Arequipa to Puno (Lake Titicaca): 6.5 hours in total
Bus from Arequipa to Chivay (Colca Canyon): 3 hours in total
From May to November the weather is warm during the day and cold at night, this time is considered a high season full of visitors. Be sure to make accommodation reservations in advance. The end of the rainy season (April and May) is also a good time to visit as the lands will be a brilliant green.
Many towns in the Colca Canyon are higher in elevation than Arequipa (2,335m 7,661ft) and about the same as Cusco (3,400m 11,150ft). Stay hydrated, avoid heavy meals or alcohol on your first few days at altitude, and drink the local remedy coca leaf tea. Give yourself a few days to acclimatize before attempting any strenuous activity.
To get a taste of high-altitude Andean trails, many travelers choose a Colca Canyon trek as a less expensive and less crowded alternative to the Inca Trail. The most popular route starts from Cabanaconde and descends to the oasis of the tourist town of Sangalle.
The average distance from the mountain peaks to the river below is 10,200 feet (3,109 meters). This distance makes Colca one of the deepest canyons in the world. The nearby Cotahuasi Canyon is a few hundred meters deeper.
first of all machu picchu was amazing,but only can re-entry twice! wayna picchu was amazing too but there were only 2 slot of time 200 people can get inside each time, need to book the ticket before. My slot was 10-11 entry time, so we thought we could spend more time in machu picchu so we reached the entry gate at 11.
I recently visited Peru for a wedding in Lima…I took it upon myself to extend my trip by visiting Cusco so I could do some sightseeing and hiking. I researched and found Peru Wayna Picchu…reached out to them, told them when I would be there and what I wanted to do. They in return sent me a whole itinerary detailing each day. The trips were absolutely amazing, the tour guides were extremely knowledgeable, personable and fun.
I have known and worked with Karen Lizbeth Espinoza Ovalle for over ten years on numerous travel plans. I have currently made sixteen trips to Cusco and she has been involved in every trip I have made. She is very professional and extremely courteous to work with. I would recommend using Karen for any travel plans! Not only that; but she is such a wonderful person to know.
What else to say about this beautiful, historic and amazing place. We hiked up the Wayna piccu to get an overlook on the maccu piccu and where lucky. It was absolutely breathtaking!
It was an incredible experience, the quality of service was exceptional, I loved it, I recommend it!!
It was an incredible experience!! I really enjoyed this trip, getting to know the wonder of the world, thanks to the guides, the logistics, the whole team in general, really exceptional!!
You’ll need to plan this at least 6 months in advance. I suggest the early time slot if you can. If you’ve acclimated in Cusco or the Inca trail this will be easier for you. Plan on a very steep and hard trek to the top. This is not for children. If you expect a nice path with easy stairs like you’ll find in Machu Picchu don’t waste your money. When you make it to the top, wow….
Our trip in May was my second to Cusco and the first one for my friend. I already had in mind to visit WaynaPicchu since I couldn’t do it in my first trip (my kids were too small for such a hike) and it was more than I expected. Maybe it was the anticipation, or maybe it was the hour hike it took to get there…
It was an awesome climb! And it was Not near as physically challenging as the four day Inca Trail. Looks intimidating but it was fairly safe for a 60+ year old (that is in good physical shape). It took my wife & I about 30 to 40 minutes to climb. It had steel cable handrails along the mountain side for many parts of the climb. You should be acclimated to the elevation prior to climbing. And train on hikes and/or stair master. Spectacular views. Worth the climb and price.