Arequipa’s “Old Bridge” began life on the 11th of June in 1577, but it took until 1608 to be completed at a cost of 150,000 silver pesos. The city was in need of a way across the river Chili from the city’s center, and Spanish architect Juan de Aldaná oversaw the project during all this time.
Category: "Arequipa Guide"
As the Inca Mayta Capac passed with his soldiers through the valley in which modern Arequipa sits, some asked to stay behind. “Ari quepay”, he said. Yes, stay.
The Spanish, when they arrived in these lands, often pronounced local words badly and named their new city the Villa Hermosa de la Asunción del Valle de Arequipa. Only Arequipa stuck.
The small town of Maca also tries to make the most of tourists and their cameras. I had no problems handing over 1 sol for these pictures of an eagle and this little girl.
The Cabanas and Collaguas are, or rather were, two distinct ethnic groups in the Colca area. Before Spanish conquest and intervention it was not permitted for the two groups to intermarry. The two groups distinguished themselves by creating different head deformations, one group had tall and thin skulls and one had fat and long skulls. They did this by tying two pieces of wood to the babies head until the affects were irreversible.
Yanque is a small town that many tour operators in the area exploit for free entertainment for their clients, while the townsfolk exploit the flood of passing tourists by providing entertainment and photo opportunities in the hope of getting tips.
We passed through this town twice a few hours apart – and the people were still dancing. I hope the tips contribute to an energy-rich diet – but I doubt it.
We left Arequipa in the early morning to head to Chivay, a town in the mountainous north of the department of Arequipa and one that is close to the Colca Canyon.
The journey was made interesting by the regular sightings of Vicuñas, Alpacas and Llamas.
Arequipa takes on a very Parisian feel at night, with its grand arches and cathedral lit up in a very tasteful way (quite uncommon for South America).
These photos show what I mean.
There are a few places with good views of the city – we visited two of them and took these photos.
The main attraction of Arequipa is the beautifully preserved Monastery of Santa Catalina.
This is a walled-off convent where 20 nuns still live, separate from the parts open to the public. It was built in the 15th century, founded by a rich window called Maria del Guzman…
We were awoken at 6am the next day by the bus making a turn – a 180º turn that is. We were told by service provider Flaco (no-one did bother to learn his actual name) that a significant part of the Panamericana highway and all the road to Arequipa would be closed for a few hours. Peru´s international car race, known as Caminos del Inca, was taking place and we had to wait for the 20 cars to pass.