The fascinating history of the Convent of Santa Catalina could have been written by Garcia Marquez or another great Latin American writer. Dark, secret, full of mysteries, the [poi = 107016] Arequipa [/ poi] Nunnery keeps in its heart the memory of women belonging to royal families or very wealthy families who lived life as saints or - in some cases - courtesans. The monastery looks like a fortress, is a beautiful maze of courtyards and alleys with small houses-come-cells, some of them equipped with kitchens, bathrooms, living rooms and chapels. The Convent of about 20,000 sq ms, is painted blue, ochre and white, and is furnished with period furniture and objects. Some of the spaces leave you speechless. Behind the walls, the nuns lived in great luxury surrounded by a retinue of slaves and servants.
Built entirely in ashlar, this Renaissance Cathedral contains some Gothic influence. Its facade is made up of seventy columns with Corinthian capitals, three portals and two lateral arches, all surmounted by two tall Renaissance towers. In the interior stands the altar made of Carrara marble. The pulpit of the central nave has a carving of Christ defeating a snake. It hosts one of the largest organs in America, which was built in Belgium. It was hard hit by the 2001 earthquake that seriously damaged its towers.
A couple of months ago I was lucky to make a trip we had planned for a long time. We visited Chile, Peru (Machu Pichu bound) and discovered one of the most beautiful cities. Arequipa, also called the White Town, is a major city that has preserved its magnificent colonial architecture. Highly recommended, allow several days to travel, the food is impressive in its small restaurants and colonial hotels. It is seen as very safe, and the people are extremely friendly. Enjoy it.
Yanahuara Arequipa is a district located approximately two miles from downtown. It is a set of 19th century ashlar arches in which the words of famous Arequipa are recorded. It has great views of the city and the Misti volcano in clear weather. The viewpoint is next to the main square of Yanahuara.
Arequipa is the second largest city in Peru, high in the Andes mountain range. One of the most interesting things I found in the city is the cultural heritage, the stories about the Misti volcano, similar to the stories of the volcanoes Iztacíhuatl and Popocatepetl, Mexico.
It is the town's only building that has been preserved like in colonial times. Built in 1660 as part of the monumental complex of the former convent of the Society of Jesus, this complex is made up of buildings constructed by the Jesuits for religious and living purposes. The Church of the Company, designed in 1573 by Gaspar Baez, was the most obvious, and was destroyed by an earthquake in 1584. The current structure dates from 1650. The cloisters are three consecutive buildings with high arches and richly decorated columns with gargoyles to drain the rain water. Today, after its last restoration, different craft shops, jewellery stores and offices are located in its arcades.
Teh Bolognesi Bridge is one of the three bridges over the River Chili Arequipa, also known as the "Old Bridge." Its construction began in 1577, designed by the by the architect Juan de Aldana and was not completed until 1608. Cross the river by the bridge and follow Bolognesi Street and you come to the main square, the sides of the road are different 'tambos' (group of houses) and also warehouses, particularly saddlery. From the bridge there is a beautiful view of Arequipa, the river, and of course, the Misti volcano.
The Iglesia de la Compania is one of the many churches located in the historical centre of Arequipa, is located between the Portal de la Municipad and Portal de Flores. Erected by the Society of Jesus in the Peruvian city of Arequipa, this is one of the most prominent examples of the so-called mestizo architecture. Inside, you can see wooden altarpieces covered with gold leaf.
The buildings and roofs were designed by renowned French engineer Gustave Eiffel, the creator of the famous Eiffel Tower in Paris. This market is one of his works in the city of Arequipa. It's one of the oldest markets in the city, having stood for over 130 years. You can enjoy fresh, homemade juice at many of the stalls.
The "Mirador" is in the village "Carmen Alto", 6 km from the centre of Arequipa. It is owned by Ms. Miriam Caceres, who has a small office offering natural and traditional juices. There's also a small barn where you can learn about the breeding of guinea pigs, llamas and alpacas. There are several snowcapped peaks, mountains and volcanoes. A haven of peace, close to the large and bustling Arequipa. As well as enjoying the spectacular views, you can enjoy wonderful natural juices, enriched by Miriam's explanations. Very easy to reach from the centre of Arequipa - every driver knows it.
In the Hotel Libertador Arequipa City (hotel-deliverer) there is a curious character, to get to breakfast we were asked if we had already met Juanita, they offered to accompany us to meet her, we went to the garden and there she was a huge tortoise from the Galapagos Islands that lives in the garden, they told us that they believed that he was about 150 years old, and it is always near the swings. Amazing sight as you do not get to see one everyday.
During my last trip to South America, I visited the south of Peru and the beautiful city of Arequipa. Legend has it that the Spanish conquistadors built this city for women who were waiting for the right husband to marry ... wandering through this alapaca museum, full of very resistant wool, was interesting. This wool is common in South America, specificaly the Andean areas, and seeing its production is really quiet special. There's a small store available, too. Highly recommended.
Arequipa is the largest city of the Arequipa region and home to Peru's Constitutional Court. As you'd expect, there are many things to see in Arequipa, also known as the "White City." Among the most important places to visit in Arequipa is the historic quarter. The architecture in the historic center is characterized by the prominence of "sillar," a white or pink soft weather resistant volcanic rock that emerged as a structural solution to earthquake risks. In fact, the city has suffered many earthquakes in its history, the result of which can still be seen in many of the most famous attractions in Arequipa.
Many of the top Arequipa attractions today are religious monuments such as chapels, monasteries and more than fourteen historic churches. Some of the other most popular things to do in Arequipa are found in the historic Yanahuara district, a National Heritage Site built in the Andalusian style.
One of the locals' favorite Arequipa activities is visiting the Sabandía, a valley on the outskirts of the city which is home to crystal-clear rivers and natural pools. Or, opt for a day-trip to the nearby village of Cayma, known for its taverns and a beautiful seventeenth century church.
For more on what to do in Arequipa, have a look through the tips and recommendations on minube and discover all the best stuff to do in Arequipa.