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10 Things to Do in Arequipa – The Ultimate Guide

Plaza de Armas, Arequipa.
Plaza de Armas, Arequipa.

There are some places that you simply can’t miss in Arequipa. If you’re a religious person, you should definitely visit the cathedral and the 16th-century Jesuit church. These two historic buildings are located in the same square, but they are significantly smaller. You must also visit Santa Catalina Monastery, which is considered one of the best places to see in Arequipa.

1. Plaza de Armas

If you are in search of a cultural experience in Arequipa, you should begin your tour in the historic center, Plaza de Armas. This grand plaza is lined with white buildings, arched colonnades, and an imposing cathedral. Whether you’re planning a solo or group tour, the Plaza de Armas will satisfy your sense of culture and heritage. The architecture of this square is a mix of neoclassical, renaissance, and gothic styles.

Don’t miss the Santa Catalina Convent, which is located near the Plaza de Armas. This convent was built at the end of the 16th century and housed nuns from Europe and indigenous tribes. Because of its high altitude, the building stayed remarkably intact. Its huge stone walls protect it from the elements and have a total area of 20,000 square meters.

While you’re in the Plaza de Armas, don’t miss the Basilica Cathedral, built of white volcanic stones. You’ll be in awe of this beautiful cathedral, which has a magnificent pulpit and a renowned Belgian pipe organ. To enter, visitors must keep their shoulders and knees covered, so make sure to wear long pants and a jumper. If you’re planning to buy souvenirs, you can also go to the market to buy some locally made crafts.

2. La Mansion del Fundador

Visit La Mansion del Fundador in Arequipa, Peru, a colonial estate that was once the home of the city’s colonial founder. The mansion has been meticulously restored and retains many of the features that make it a beautiful place to visit. Among these are the beautiful rooms, paintings, and gardens. It is well worth the price of admission to tour its elegant interior and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.

If you’re a history buff, La Mansion del Fundador is an excellent choice for you. The colonial mansion is part of a guided tour of the countryside surrounding Arequipa. Open daily from 9 am to 5 pm, this historic site offers an informative and entertaining tour for any age group. The museum features many artifacts and displays, including ancient relics and sculptures.

3. Mercado San Camilo

If you’re looking for souvenirs, a quick lunch, or a few groceries, Mercado San Camilo is a great option. The 100-square-meter market is known for its delicious food, artisanal crafts, natural medicines, and more. You’ll also find plenty of colorful produce and a wide variety of fruit. If you’re a vegetarian, make sure to avoid the meat section, though.

Mercado San Camilo.
Mercado San Camilo.

Arequipa’s Mercado San Camilo is one of the city’s largest markets, and the bustling activity there gives visitors a true, authentic Peruvian experience. From artisanal cheeses to locally grown produce, the Mercado is a vibrant, heady place to explore. A visit to this lively market is the perfect opportunity to buy souvenirs and learn a little bit about the local lifestyle.

4. Santa Catalina Monastery

The Santa Catalina Monastery in Peru is a Dominican monastery and one of the most beautiful in the world. It is home to the Dominican Second Order and is located in Arequipa, Peru. The monastery is open to the public, and tours can be arranged by prior arrangement. However, you must make sure that you book your tour in advance to avoid disappointment.

The Santa Catalina Monastery in the Peruvian city of Arequipa is one of the best tourist attractions in the world. It was founded in 1579 and is located near the town’s main square. The convent originally housed more than 300 nuns. Most of the women were from upper-class families. During its busiest periods, the convent was home to as many as 450 residents. At that time, about one-third were nuns and the rest were servants.

5. Mundo Alpaca

The Petting Zoo at Mundo Alpaca in Arequipa is a must-visit if you’re in Arequipa. You’ll get to see a variety of alpacas and llamas up close. There are also textile exhibits and a wool boutique. The entire experience is sure to leave you feeling relaxed, content, and inspired! This Arequipa attraction is a great way to spend a day or even an entire week!

A cute Alpaca.
A cute Alpaca.

The museum is located in the historic center of Arequipa, near the city’s main plaza. The facility’s educational programs and tours include feeding alpacas, hands-on alpaca experience, and a certified store for baby alpaca products. It’s also located in a beautiful 435-year-old monastery. Visitors will learn about the history and culture of alpaca farming, as well as the unique products and techniques used to create them.

6. Casa Museo Mario Vargas Llosa

If you’re looking for a place to visit in Arequipa, then the Casa Museo Mario Vargas Llosa is a must-see. This Nobel Prize-winning writer’s house is only open to 48 people per day. It is an ideal way to get to know the author and his works. You’ll be glad you did! There are plenty of other reasons to go to Arequipa.

If you’re interested in reading a novel by a famous Peruvian author, you should visit Casa Museo Mario Vargas Llosa in Arequipa. This museum is filled with works by this famous writer. You’ll find an extensive library of the writer’s work, including over 24,000 books. During the tour, you’ll have the chance to interact with holograms and watch videos of him.

The museum is located about a kilometer from the Plaza de Armas. It is easily accessible on foot or by taxi. Taxis cost around 5 Peruvian soles. You’ll find free self-parking at the museum. This museum is an excellent choice for families with children. It also has a library and luggage storage facilities. There’s also free WiFi, and the museum can provide a free shuttle service to and from the airport.

7. La Recoleta is a 17th-century convent

If you want to learn about Arequipa’s history and culture, a 17th-century convent in Arepilca is a must-see. The convent’s museum contains more than 300 works of art, and you can learn about the history of the city by taking a guided tour. The gardens of the convent are particularly impressive. The convent’s store has rose-scented soap and fresh bread.

The Museum-Friary of La Recoleta is a wonderful place to take a break. Located off the beaten path, this convent is well worth a visit. The library is stocked with a collection of books, including some from the early seventeenth century. You can even visit the Ice Maiden exhibit across the river. The museum features three collections and is free to visit.

If you want to see more of the convent, take a guided tour, which is available in English and other languages. This tour is S/20, and the tour will allow you to see the convent before the crowds arrive. Also, consider visiting the convent at night, when the wood fires are lit and the candles are flickering. Allow at least two hours for your visit.

8. El Mercado San Camilo is a popular market

Located a few blocks south of the Plaza de Armas, the main market in Arequipa is a must-visit. Here you will find all sorts of goods, including fresh produce, meats, cheeses, organic vegetables and herbs, clothing, and even dried plants. Many of these products have medicinal properties and are sold in the market. You can also stop by to eat and chat with locals while enjoying some of the local specialties.

The main market in Arequipa is the Mercado San Camilo. The market was designed by Gustave Eiffel, the same man responsible for the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Originally, this market was not in use, but it was re-opened in 1938. The food and produce are delicious and you’ll learn a lot about the city’s rich culture while browsing the market.

9. Visiting the frozen body of a girl is one of the most popular attractions in Arequipa

Among the most popular attractions in Arequipa is the ice mummy of Juanita, a 12-year-old Inca girl who was sacrificed to the Ampato volcano. During the Inca Empire, the body of Juanita was believed to have been frozen in a volcano to prevent famine and drought. However, the body was discovered in 1995 and is now housed in a museum that features artifacts from the expedition.

If you’re interested in culture, then the Cathedral of Arequipa is a must-see. The city center was listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The cathedral is one of the oldest churches in Peru, and the main square is still the city’s territory. Street photographers will find this city’s streets to be a paradise for street photographers. Be sure to ask for permission before taking any photos, though.

10. San Lazaro neighbourhood

If you’re visiting Arequipa, one of the most important neighborhoods is San Lazaro, which dates back to 1540. The area’s narrow streets, white washed houses, and colorful murals depict ancient Peruvian life are sure to inspire you. You can stroll around the area and enjoy the sun-drenched sunsets. Alternatively, visit the city’s main square to see its iconic soaring cathedral.

Ocopa, a tradicional dish of Arequipa.
Ocopa, a tradicional dish of Arequipa.

After walking around the historic district, don’t miss the Mercado San Camilo, a traditional market in Arequipa’s San Lazaró neighbourhood. Here, you can sample the city’s cuisine and souvenirs at affordable prices. A swarm of colourful stalls is the perfect place to stock up on souvenirs. It’s also the perfect place to stop for a refreshing smoothie.

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