Southern Peru is home to an area called the Arequipa Region which has a large population of just under one million and has the second largest city in Peru, Arequipa located within its boundaries. Arequipa is the capital of this region that is located in the Andes mountains with the city approximately 2,400 meters above sea level. Even at this high elevation the city of Arequipa is overlooked by the snow capped volcano El Misti. This volcano stands just over 5,900 meters above sea level and provides a beautiful backdrop to this region.
The city of Arequipa has a long history with Spanish influences which are still evident through the many buildings that have been preserved throughout the city. The city is also known locally as the white city due to the number of buildings that were constructed using the locally mined pearl white volcanic rock which was in abundance in this area. The buildings that have been around since the Spanish settled in this area have also been protected under a World Heritage listing in recognition mostly for the local architecture.
The city of Arequipa has also been influenced many other countries as this city was and still is a hub for transport and imports of goods to southern Peru. Arequipa trades mostly with the countries that are directly around the south of Peru including Brazil and Chile.
Travellers to Arequipa will be greeted by a vibrant city with much to see and do. The city area is easy to get around on foot with most of the historic buildings located within the city with an easy short walk between them. Many tourist come the Arequipa to check out the architecture such as the Plaza de Armas in the middle of town which is surrounded by white buildings all made from the local white volcanic stone. While visiting Arequipa it is worth a trip to the Museum which showcases the history of the area and has some interesting displays which includes frozen sacrificial victims found by locals on the neighbouring volcanoes. Visitors to this area of Peru can also shop at the local markets for a wide range of goods from fresh fruit and vegetables to the perfect souvenir for your trip to Peru.
Other things to consider when visiting Arequipa is that accommodation is available for all budgets and if you are interested in the history and the architecture of this city then plan to give yourself a few days in this location so that you don’t have to miss out on anything that Arequipa has to offer.