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Arequipa & Colca Canyon
It may not have the global appeal of Cuzco or Machu Picchu, but Arequipa more than deserves its spot on the extraordinary show reel of Peru. And if the city’s residents cast envious eyes to Cuzco, it certainly doesn’t show. And why would it? Arequipa has an astonishing amount going for it.
For the visitor, there are four particular points of interest. The first is the gorgeous city centre, a UNESCO World Heritage site, with its lovely colonial buildings and colossal cathedral, which when set against the city’s dramatic volcanic backdrop creates a seriously Instagramable scene!
Three mighty volcanoes, including the towering El Misti, fringe the city and the area is popular for all kinds of adventure sports from volcano trekking and climbing to whitewater rafting. It takes around eight hours to hike to the summit of El Misti and the views are magnificent. We recommend a soak in the famous hot springs afterwards!
Back in the city, be sure to make time to sample the city’s emerging gastro scene, which has powered an unlikely global renaissance for Peruvian cuisine, from New York to London, before heading out to see the magnificent Colca Canyon. This epic gorge – twice as deep as the Grand Canyon – is just two hours or so from Arequipa and remains as standout natural attraction even by Peru’s standards.Read more...
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