Arequipa, Peru
The perfect 5 days itinerary

Arequipa, known as the 'White City' due to its many buildings made from sillar, a white volcanic stone, is Peru's second-largest city. Nestled at the foot of the Misti volcano, it offers a unique blend of natural beauty, historical architecture, and vibrant cultural life. The city is famous for its stunning colonial-era buildings, such as the Santa Catalina Monastery and the Arequipa Cathedral. Arequipa is also the gateway to the Colca Canyon, one of the world's deepest canyons, offering breathtaking views and opportunities for adventure tourism.

What to do in Arequipa?

This 5 days itinerary is the perfect guide to the best things to see in Arequipa. It includes day-by-day activities, travel tips, and the top places to visit.

Day 1: Exploring Arequipa's Historical Center

Morning

Start your day with a visit to the Santa Catalina Monastery, a sprawling religious complex that's like a city within a city. Wander through its colorful streets and courtyards, and learn about the lives of the nuns who have lived there since the 16th century.

Afternoon

Head to the Arequipa Cathedral, a stunning example of neo-Gothic architecture. Climb up to the cathedral's rooftop for a panoramic view of the city and the surrounding volcanoes. Explore the Plaza de Armas, the city's main square, surrounded by colonial buildings and cafes.

Evening

Enjoy dinner at a local picantería, where you can try traditional Arequipan dishes like rocoto relleno (stuffed spicy peppers) and chupe de camarones (shrimp soup).


Day 2: Natural Wonders and Local Markets

Morning

Visit the Yanahuara Viewpoint for a breathtaking view of the Misti volcano and the city below. Stroll through the Yanahuara district, known for its sillar stone arches and quaint streets.

Afternoon

Explore the San Camilo Market, the oldest market in Arequipa. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere and try some local fruits, cheeses, and other delicacies.

Evening

Relax at a café in the San Lázaro district, a charming area with narrow alleys and white sillar stone buildings. Enjoy a cup of Peruvian coffee or a pisco sour, the national cocktail.


Day 3: Adventure in the Colca Canyon

Full Day

Embark on a day trip to the Colca Canyon, one of the deepest canyons in the world. Enjoy the stunning landscapes, visit traditional villages, and spot the majestic Andean condors soaring above the canyon. Options for trekking, hot springs, and observing local wildlife are available. Return to Arequipa in the evening.


Day 4: Cultural Immersion and Relaxation

Morning

Visit the Museum of Andean Sanctuaries to see the preserved Ice Maiden, Juanita, an Inca girl sacrificed over 500 years ago. Learn about the Inca culture and the significance of such sacrifices.

Afternoon

Spend the afternoon at the Mundo Alpaca, where you can learn about the process of making alpaca wool products, from shearing the animals to weaving the final product. Interact with the alpacas and purchase some high-quality souvenirs.

Evening

Attend a traditional Peruvian cooking class. Learn how to prepare classic dishes and enjoy the fruits of your labor for dinner.


Day 5: Leisure and Departure

Morning

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast at a café overlooking the Plaza de Armas. Take a final stroll through the city, visiting any shops or sites you may have missed.

Afternoon

Prepare for your departure. Reflect on the memories made and the beauty of Arequipa as you head to the airport.


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