YOU CAN EDIT THIS PAGE! Just click any blue "Edit" link and start writing!


From Wikitravel
Jump to: navigation, search

Arequipa is a city in the Southern Coastal region of Peru just below the edge of the Altiplano, at 2380 meters above sea level and surrounded by three impressive volcanoes. It's Peru's second most important city (after Lima), and the second most popular among tourists (after Cuzco).


El Misti volcano, Arequipa

The city is part of the so called "Southern Peru Tourist Corridor", together with Nazca, Puno and Cusco. In contrast to these other cities, Arequipa is an example of the Spanish and mestizo culture developed in Peru. There are no Inca artifacts or ruins in the city.

In the winter it is drier than in the summer. It is nicknamed the 'white city' (la ciudad blanca, in Spanish), because many of the buildings in the area are built of sillar, a white stone. This rock was quarried from the many volcanoes that surround the city, including the towering El Misti. Another theory which is commonly believed by the local population, is that the name 'white city' came about because it was built by spanish immigrants from the Basque Country who had pale skin and blonde hair. New Urban and archeological discoveries have shown that the frontage of houses were painted in different colours. Remaining examples can be found in the 'Casa Tristan del Pozo', the town centre. Ask for local help to identify Misti, Chachani and PichuPichu, the three volcanoes surrounding the city.

Arequipa embodies a rich mix of the indigenous and Spanish colonial cultures. With 478 years of history since its founding, examples of Spanish colonial architecture can be found throughout the center of the city and several surrounding districts. UNESCO has declared it a Human Heritage site. Catholic churches are scattered throughout the center of the city. Some ancient houses have been refurbished by the local authorities and serve as living museums. An example of this are the so-called "Tambos" located at Puente Bolognesi street.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

By far the easiest way to get to Arequipa is by plane, landing in Rodríguez Ballón airport (IATA: AQP), 8km from the city. Latam (formerly LAN Peru) [10] flies from Lima and Cuzco. Avianca (formerly Taca) [11], Peruvian Airlines [12] and LC Peru [13] fly from their hubs in Lima. There are several connecting flights from Juliaca in Avianca and Latam. Peruvian Airlines also has non-daily flights to the coastal city of Tacna, in the border with Chile.

A taxi from the airport to the Plaza de Armas costs a flat-rate of S/20; go to the counter before leaving the baggage claim area to avoid hassle. Signs are posted with this rate, but depending on the size of the car, the size of your bags and your bartering skills you could pay less.

If you exit the airport on foot and follow the road for about 1.5km you will eventually come to a T-junction. Cross the road and you will find a bus stop. Combis (small buses) go from here via the plaza de armas. The journey takes about 20/30 minutes, depending on traffic, and costs 1 sol.

By bus[edit]

There are two terminals serving the city, Terminal Terrestre and Terminal Terrapuerto. They're next to each other, about 3km from the center. A taxi should cost around 10 soles but prices are fixed based on distance. You need a taxi to get to your hotel. Take taxis WITHIN the parking lot of the bus station. Those are registered official taxis. Express kidnappings have been reported with passengers taking taxis outside the bus stations. You can use buses/combis to get to/from the main bus terminal for 0.75 soles per person to Plaza de Armas; much cheaper than a taxi and still quite quick. Usually Hotels do not organize pickups from the bus station because buses delay and their time of arrival is not exact. But you can ask your hotel to call a taxi for you when you arrive at the bus station. It will take no more than 20 minutes of waiting.

From Lima (16-18 hours) it's advisable to take non-stop express buses — though more expensive, they tend to be safer. Cruz del Sur, Oltursa and Excluciva are reputable companies with special tourist services. They leave from dedicated VIP terminals in Lima. Most express buses leave starting at 5 pm in order to get to Arequipa early morning. Its a night trip and has no view attraction. A special service from Cruz del Sur leaves at 9 pm and let you enjoy watchig the beautiful coast of Arequipa during the trip. Regular or local services stop too many times on the way and your risk of losing your luggage is very high. Avoid them.

Peru Hop has buses to Arequipa, as well. Unlike other buses that provide a direct service, Peru Hop bus passes include stops where you can choose to hop off along the way to Arequipa. Their stops from Lima to Arequipa include Paracas, Huacachina and Nazca. Peru Hop offers free hotel and hostel pick-up and drop-off.

From Cusco an option is Cruz del Sur Cruzero service. It's expensive but a night non stop express service with comfortable buses. You arrive to Arequipa very early, at 6-7 am. Be aware some hotels will not give you a room that early.

If you take a Peru Hop bus From Cusco to Arequipa you can choose to stop and hop off in Puno .They offer free hotel and hostel pick-up and drop-off.

From Ica (12 hours). Cruz del Sur offers a night nonstop express service with comfortable seating. For Ica Andoriña bus was the cheapest (10 hours - 5 times a day) but it stopped too many times, the AC wasn't working and it was difficult to really sleep.

From Puno there are buses roughly hourly, taking about 6hours. Cruz del Sur daily service leaves at 3.30 pm. Some Expresso services are also available with 4M and Giardino Tours. If you are a group (4+) you can rent a charter. All the local companies providing regular cheap service have being reported as bad and unsafe for tourists. Julsa has been reported as the worst service available.

From Nazca, the cheapest bus option is Flores. From its office nearby the terminal in Nazca, there are buses leaving at 3.30pm and 10pm and costs S/. 50 (Nov 2015), and take anywhere between 8 to 10 hours. The bus originates in Lima so might not arrive on time in Nazca. There are numerous other bus companies (Civa, Cruz del Sur, Ormeño).

From Tacna or Chile the best option is Florez Hnos Super Dorado service leaving from Tacna National Bus Station. You better leave before night time. Its a 5 hour trip but because of customs procedures to avoid contraband, the bus can be delayed 1 to 3 hours.

La Paz Ormeños has direct buses leaving at 1AM every day, passing through Puno at 6AM and arriving in La Paz at 12 midday.

For information on bus services to and from national and international destinations, check AndesTransit.

By train[edit]

PeruRail runs the luxury train, Belmond Andean Explorer, to Juliaca and Puno one time per week.

Get around[edit]

The city has a central urban area that can be explored on foot. The historic center is a 5 block area around the main square and is relatively easy to navigate with one of the many maps available at hotels or any information office. Some ancient districts like Yanahuara and Cayma are also within walking distance. Walking is safe within reason even at nighttime. Follow your hotel recommendations on which places NOT to go.

The rural area is a whole attraction itself, with gorgeous terraces, Spanish mills, palaces and the ever-present view of the volcanoes from wherever you are.

Bus Tours[edit]

One option for visiting most of the main tourist sights from the rural and urban areas is to take a bus tour. Tour buses are available at the main square and you can book the tour at your hotel or directly with the bus driver. In two or four hours, according to the tour you book, you will visit most of the famous viewpoints of the city. It is a great experience (from 6 to 10 dollars).


For safety, use cabs from taxi dispatch companies. Your hotel or the restaurant can call it for you. Avoid taking taxis that have stopped, waiting for passengers. A tip for taking a taxi is to take the one that you see a passenger leaving from. Prices are per ride. A ride from the main square to any place in the central district will be 4 - 7 soles. A ride from the bus station to any hotel is 10 soles (as of july 2015). From the airport, the price varies between 20-30 soles. Some cab drivers try to rip you off by saying prices are per head but price is always per ride for all passengers. Allow for a minor extra charge for luggage (usually half a sol per major piece). There is also an option to rent a taxi per hour. Price:$6/hour. Please follow the advice of your hotel on reliable taxi companies.

Public Transportation[edit]

Most of the attractions are within walking distance from the historic center. You can use buses/combis to get to/from the main bus terminal for 1 soles per person (as of january 2019); much cheaper than a taxi and still quite quick. Always be aware of your personal belongings and don't leave valuables unattended. To catch a combi (minivan) from the main terminal, cross the brigde. Wait there for a minivan with a sign in the front saying different destinations, one of them Plaza de armas (eventually, the conducteur will say center). They will drop you at Av. La Marina, you have to go up to the bridge and walk for 3 cuatros to town. It will take around 15 minutes in total.

Car rental[edit]

Traffic in Arequipa is chaotic. It is not advisable to drive. If you drive to Arequipa, leave your vehicle in your hotel and enjoy the city on foot or using taxis.

From 'Hertz' you can rent a Toyota Hilux for $90/day. The 4x4 they give you will be 5 years old and have been driven over 50,000km. Do not expect the car to be clean inside (insist on a discount for this) and expect your collection to take a minimum of 45 minutes.

See[edit][add listing]

Plaza de Armas, Arequipa
  • The Plaza de Armas, the main square of Arequipa, surrounded by buildings made of sillar, a white volcanic stone.
  • Visit San Camilo Market, the oldest one, located in the centre of the city. It's three blocks away from the main square.
  • See the Juanita Mummy in the Museo Santuarios Andinos. From May to November the main exhibit is the Dama de Ampato, also known as Juanita. It is close to the main square.
Convento de Santa Catalina, Arequipa
  • Convento de Santa Catalina is the most visited building from the Spanish era of the city. Described as a city within a city, this beautiful place with its colors, flowers and little streets will make you feel like you have traveled back in time. Quite close to the Plaza de Armas.
  • One of the newest attractions is the Convento de Santa Teresa, a little off the usual tourist areas in downtown Arequipa. Not as interesting architecturally as the Convento de Santa Catalina, but some of the paintings and artifacts are stunning.
  • Many of the almost 250 colonial buildings entitled as Human Heritage by UNESCO, are close to the main square. Some have been turned into banks, stores, restaurants and departments. This method of preserving the city by finding a practical use for the historical buildings, provides a great experience to the visitor who feels like visiting a living museum.
  • Churches are among the most beautiful buildings preserved. They are all Catholic and you can visit them but be aware that they are used daily for worship so try not to be intrusive. La Compania, San Francisco, La Merced and the Cathedral are some of the most famous.
Molino de Sabandiá, Arequipa
  • Arequipa has beautiful bridges. Puente Bolognesi is the closest to the main square. Go there and visit the Tambos (ancient houses rebuilt by the city government and used as apartments). Great experience and good views of El Misti and Chachani
  • Puente Fierro is an iron bridge designed by Eiffel and still in service. A technological jewel located in Vallecito (10 blocks from main square) and a must for people who love trains and bridges. From the bridge, at golden time (4.00-5.00PM), you can get some of the best pictures from the volcanoes and the city. Worth the 15 minutes walk!
  • Nearby, in the old countryside, is the Molino de Sabandía (Sabandía Mill), a three centuries old water mill, set in the old Arequipa countryside.
  • Also to be found in the old countryside is the Mansión del Fundador, a renovated centuries old Spanish Colonial mansion. Admission 10 S/, 5 S/ for students.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Peruvian Cooking Experience. Hands on activity where you prepare Peruvian Food and enjoy eating after. A cultural souvenir from Peru. Several menus available. Daily except Sunday. A Pisco Sour Lecture and visit to the market are also optional with the activity  edit
  • Downhill volcano biking Offered in several levels of difficulty. Half day adventure managed by professional guides. S/70 to 80. They provide all the required equipment. Very safe. Great countryside views.
  • Volcano climbing Two volcanoes tower over the city: El Misti & Chachani. El Misti is the lower in elevation (5822m), but the harder climb. Trailhead is at 3,400m & the route up is very steep. No special equipment required, no snow or ice. It is possible to take a local bus towards Chiguata to the Asociación Irrigadora El Misti & walk the 6km to the trailhead from there - a 4WD is required to drive this track. Chachani is more difficult to reach, you need to rent a 4WD, but this will get you to 5,000m. There is ice on top, so crampons & an ice axe are advised. Altitude is usually the worst enemy for visitors. Chachani is over 6,000 meter in altitude, perhaps the easiest 6,000m peak in the world. Prices for guided tours are S/.200-300 for Misti & S/.350-450 for Chachani (january 2018).
  • Whitewater rafting Arequipa has some of the best rivers of the world. A typical half-day tour with some 90 min actual rafting will cost you about 70 S/.
  • Colca Canyon 3 hours bus drive away, is popular for seeing Andean Condors, hiking, and cultural activities. You can book a tour online, but if you book in central Arequipa it's 1/3 cheaper. All agents use the same few operators, so no need to shop around on anything other than price, but if you don't speak Spanish check that the guide will be presenting in English too; some present in Spanish and only speak English when asked a direct question. Think very carefully before visiting Colca Canyon in rainy season; unless you get a remarkably clear day the fog will take away 90% of the experience.


  • Spanish language Because of its weather, friendly people and budget prices (compared to Lima or Cusco), Arequipa is a great place to learn Spanish. Several schools are available. Most of them with excellent programs. Classes are usually offered in a per week basis, and with accommodation packages included.
  • EDEAQ - Legally established and recognised by the Peruvian Ministry of Education. City Centre Location. Swiss Management. Bildungsurlaub (Germany). – [14]
  • Cooking lessons This is an excellent opportunity to share with local cooks and work with them to prepare a delicious foods. The experience starts with selecting the products, then preparing and cooking them. After that, you are can serve and enjoy the outcome in the form of a good traditional meal.

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Arequipa is called the World´s capital of the Alpaca, a wool that comes from this Andean camels and considered very fine and valuable. Big factories have opened tourist outlet stores with zoos and cultural exhibits as attraction. Ask your hotel on how to get to some of the bigger ones, or visit Alpaca World, just off the corner of the Plaza de Armas.Good quality alpaca is recognized because the official label on the clothe. Prices for a sweater are between 70 to 180 soles. Cheap sweaters are usually made on faked yarn.

Sweaters, pashminas, blanquets and "ponchos" are very popular among tourists

  • Camera repairs. Upon coming to Arequipa it is common that tourists come with broken cameras because of the sand in Huacachina. Reliable and inexpensive place to have your camera fixed just for 50 soles is a photo center, located at Calle Jerusalem 107, where they also exchange money. Look for the green label above the entrance as there are many similar studios nearby

There are also and several boutiques in many locations within the historical center.

  • Chivay area provides colorful embroidery called "maquinaza style". You can find hats, purses and many handicrafts with this attractive and typical embroidery in most of the souvenir stores in the city.
  • "Mercado Artesanal" is usually a gallery where many little stores offer handicrafts. You can find several all over the historical center of the city. Compare prices before buying. Being original on design they usually do not have the quality some dedicated stores offer. You can find severa of these kinds of gallery all over the city.
  • Boutiques dedicated to handicrafts have appeared. Some offering their owners exclusive pieces or very high fashion products. A must visit to enjoy this art expression and maybe to take a piece home. You can find them on Santa Catalina street. La Compania Convent nex to the plaza hosts several of them within a beautiful environment. Patio del Ekeko is a building hosting boutiques, a jewellery and a great cafeteria.
  • Chocolate - La Iberica is a local brand producing great chocolate on different presentations. Its considered one of the best gourmet chocolate in Peru. You can find stores all over the city. Try bitter chocolate.
  • There is an international bookshop in Calle San Fransisco, the north bound street from the northeast corner of the Plaza de Armas, after approx. 100 meter on your left.

Eat[edit][add listing]

Local restaurants are called Picanterias. They are still very popular among locals. Some are within the urban area and some others on the outside of the city. There is a neighborhood called Arancota, where you can find many of this restaurants. Some of them are huge (600 tables or more) and they are usually full of locals. The main food attraction in this area is chicharron (fried pork with corn). Menu's are usually set, consisting of a hearty soup followed by a main dish. Drinks are often included. Prices are generally very cheap, varying from 5 S/ to 10 S/. Dishes at La Capitana range from 10 S/ (Almuerzo) to 31 S/ (Cuy, or guinea pig). Prices at La Palomina (and adjoining La Nueva Palomina) skyrockted as they have been included on guidebooks - do not expect a meal below 30 S/. The best time to eat at a Picanteria is between 12 pm and 3 pm. La Capitana is closed on Thursdays.

If you are looking for some good and cheap lunch, have a look at the tiny restaurants in Calle Puente Bolognesi (Plaza de Armas towards Puente Bolognesi bridge). Set lunch (soup, choice of 2-4 main dishes and sometimes a dessert and/or drink) costs between 3,50 and 5,50 soles.

As with all Peruvian food: local delicacies are heavy and sometimes very hot. Try them with care, especially since the height of the city (around 2,300 meters) makes digestion slow. Take a mate de coca, coca-leaf tea, after meals: it helps indigestion and makes the altitude more bearable.

Arequipa keeps one of the most varied and flavored cuisine cultures in the country. Robust, with long term cooking products and with soups as their main dish. Local food is usually served at lunch time but you can also find it in locals for tourists during dinner time.

Spicy food is very popular. Locals use rocoto (Capsicum pubescens) to provide the spicy taste to their foods. This flavour is different than the spicy flavour you find in Indian or Mexican food.

Try Rocoto relleno con pastel de papa, a stuffed, quite large pepper with potato pie. Ask beforehand if it has been made for "tourists" or if it is the original, quite hot, style; if the last one, be careful, it can be extremely hot.

Try Alpaca steaks. This meat very low in fat is juicy and very soft. Presented in all the variations that beef is presented regularly.

This city is the best place in Peru to eat river shrimps. They are presented in several ways, being the most popular Chupe de Camarones, a thick soup very flavored and presented with many shrimps in it. Beware, plates here are big.

Arequipa is only three hours away from the sea, so many fish restaurants are available. If you have not tried Ceviche in Peru yet, this is a great opportunity. There are also many other sea delicacies.

There are a dozen local vegetarian restaurants around town, serving a large set lunch for less then S./10.

  • Mercado San Camilo, Calle San Camilo (Walking distance from the Plaza de Armas towards the south.). Daytime. Inside the market there are plenty of popular restaurants frequented by the locals and with a large variety of local Arequipan cuisine. Dona Rosa's famous "queso helado" (an icecream-like desert made with condensed milk, shredded coconut and sprinkled with cinnamon) is also there and makes a great desert for only 2.5 S/. On the market level, there is a busy tamale stand near the fruit stands, served with a fresh tomato, cilantro and onion salsa for only 2 S/. A row of juice bars are on the ground level, with 2 glasses ranging from 5 to 10 S/, depending on the fruit you chose. 5 to 15 soles.  edit

  • Ary Quepay, Calle Jerusalén 502. Nice restaurant that serves local food.  edit
  • el buda profano, Calle Bolivar 425, [1]. Delicious vegan sushi at reasonable prices in a cool space. S/.10.  edit
  • Los Girasoles, Av. Lambramani, 112 (– Urb. Alvarez Thomas E-2. Arequipa), (+51) (5.4) .20.-5.523. Vegetarian Restaurant  edit
  • Indian Cuisine, Calle Bolivar 502. Range of tasty Indian dishes. S./25.  edit
  • Istanbul, Calle San Francisco 229. Decent middle-eastern food including vegetarian options. Turns into a cocktail lounge at night.
  • Picanteria La Capitana Old and the truly old cooking in Arequipa, is behind Saga Falabella, this picanteria keep the old traditions. Go early or you wont find the menu which is around 10 soles, other plates are also always available. Best time to go is between 12 and 3 pm. Closed Thursdays.
  • Picanteria La Lucila Sachaca, still run by Sra Lucila Salas de Ballon, it's a short taxi ride out of town. Old style kitchen with Cuy (Guinea Pigs) eating scraps in the corner, and Lucila still makes her sauces the old way as she keeps an eye on everything and everyone.

  • Lazos, San Francisco 315, 215729. Steakhouse  edit
  • Mandala, Calle Jerusalén 207, tél: 22 99 74, natural and tasty vegetarian food. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. At lunch time, the menú ejecutivo, including a small salad, a soup, a yoghurt, a main dish, a dessert and a drink costs only 8 soles. Dinner (soup, main dish and a drink) normally costs around 7 soles. Very friendly staff. Update dec 2013: Ok if your on a diet and prefer bland food. Tiny square of lasagne cooked with TVP (textured vege protein, ie: soya, which will be GM soya and contain msg. Its a cheap menu if your not fussy about taste, freshness or size. Soup was healthy but also bland.
  • Mandarian, Mercaderes 310. One of the better Chifa (Peruvian chinese) places in town. A wider range of options then the typical greasy fried rice you get elsewhere. Some decent vegetarian options as well. S./15.  edit
  • Maya, Calle Jerusalén (Almost on the corner of Ugarte). Breakfast, piglets, burgers and more. Their set lunch is somewhat expensive, but they do it better Set lunch 5,50 S/..  edit
  • Nitay Gouranga Vegetarian Restaurant, Calle Rivero (Rivero Street) 603 Cercado. You can get the menu of the day for just 4 S/ including soup and a main dish and a soft natural drink. Tasty vegetarian food. Also you can order and have different options.
  • Nostra Fusion - Calle Jerusalen 613, A bit more of a walk from the main plaza but worth it. Very tasty menu for 10 soles with garlic bread, drink and choices of mains like vege pizzas or freshly made spaghetti or lasagne. Decent potion for mains. Wine and coffee also available. Clean and fresh space with real photos of the food on the walls, the actual meals you get.
  • Salud Y Vida, Octavo Muñez Najar # 140 (4.5 blocks east of the Plaza de Armas). noon until 3pm.. Large and popular vegetarian restaurant serving a set lunch. S./7.  edit
  • Tacos y Tequilas, Calle Ugarte 112, +51 54 628653. A nice atmospheric Mexican restaurant. The Mexican menu' is delicious, with an excellent guacemole. Veggie tacos are excellent. Mexican Menu 10 S/.  edit
  • Zig Zag Restaurant (Alpandina Gastronomy), Zela 210 - Cercado (3 blocks north of Plaza de Armas, across from Plaza San Fransciso), 0051 54 206020, [2]. reservations recommended. High Class city dining across from the Plaza de San Francisco. Zigzag offers a diverse menu that boasts French, Italian and Andean-Peruvian influences (Chef/Owner Michel Hediger is actually Swiss). Several popular dishes are served sizzling on volcanic rock... you will be adorned with a paper bib. Good espresso properly served with sparkling water and a simple cookie. Pan de la casa (two types of house bread) are served with delicious garlic and black olive butters. Tasty "Velouté de espárragos con coulis de maiz" is the popular asparagus soup; slightly spicy. Delicious "El Trilogía" comes as 150, 200, or 300g of Pork, Beef and Alpaca Filet on an aforementioned sizzling volcanic rock slab. S/100.  edit
  • Zingaro, Calle San Fransisco 309, [3]. Typical food like "cuy" or "rocoto relleno".  edit
  • Caffetteria Guormet Italiano, Calle Jerusalen 307 a (Cercado), 215657. 07 30 - 22 30. Authentic Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria. Fresh pastas; Lasagne, Gnocchi, Spaghetti,Ravioli and Cannellonis. Everything homemade! Authentic Italian Pizza with a variety of combinations. Real Italian coffee. There is Breakfast, Lunch (Delicious 3 course menu for 15 soles) and Dinner (Pizza promotions with Bruscetta and Italian wine)  edit
  • vive mexico restaurante, calle jerusalem 307-D. tasty mexican food  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

The typical Peruvian drink is Pisco. Arequipa is the craddle for the Acholado type, a Pisco comming from a mixture of several grapes. Locals drink it pure, in little sips. Chilcano is another way to drink it, Pisco with white soda. And of course, the Pisco Sour, which is a must for any visitor.

The local booze is Anis Najar. Chicha and Pisco Sour is also drunk.

Many bars and clubs for tourists are on Calle San Fransisco, uphill from the main square. Many have happy hour specials until 10.00PM.

There is an area of the city called Calle Dolores, with discotheques, kareoke bars, and salsa ball rooms usually attended by locals but safe enough for travellers. The taxi is needed to get there.

  • Frogs Live, Calle Zela 216. Cover bands belt out rock tunes while the patrons chug huge mugs of Pilsen. Leave your guns and knives at home as you will get frisked at the door. S./10.  edit
  • Encomium Trova, Avenida Dolores 124. Live trova in an intimate atmosphere. Starts around midnight Thursday through Saturday. S./30.  edit
  • A good place to watch the sunset in Arequipa is in one of the third floor restaurants on the main square. Make sure you are a little in advance because there might be others as well. The view of the mountains and the main square is amazing.


  • Cafe Bar Senor Misti, Calle General Moran 118 - int. 13 (in the Claustros de la Compania), 054-214441, [4]. Cafe Bar Senor Misti is a very nice Cafe Bar within the wonderful Claustros de la Compania. Senor Misti offers very good cafe and one of the best Pisco Sour in town and offers free Wi-Fi. Nice place to enjoy the oldtown in a secure and calm way. Very nice outdoor-seats.  edit
  • Espressate, Av. Trinidad Morán G-22 (Urb. León XIII, Cayma), 054274607, [5]. Espressate is a small, comfy, and welcoming place to enjoy a good cup of coffee, some homemade desserts and Spanish tapas. This coffee house offers free wi-fi, has a books exchange corner (books in different languages) -- Edit: no books as of October 2012 -- and also sells special gifts (jewelry, ceramics, etc.). A nice little place to spend some time…  edit
  • Lucciano, Calle Mercederes (1/2 a block east of the Plaza de Armas). Cortado (coffee with a bit of milk) and a pastry costs S./7 at this local bakery.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]


  • Wild Rover [15] Located right in the heart of Arequipa, hostel provides the perfect base for exploring the city and surrounding area. There are fun daily activities organized by staff (sports, cultural activities, gastronomic events, etc.) as well as tours and excursions available to book right at the hostel. For sports lovers, Wild Rover is also the best spot to watch live sports on TV in Arequipa.
  • Sol de Oro Hostel [16] Cruz Verde 307 (01) This is a great spot to rest your head in Arequipa, located a four minute walk from the main plaza as well as close to central market. This relaxed, family run hostel offers private rooms (including twin share) or six-bed dormitories at 25 soles per night, including: hot-cooked breakfast, 24 hour reception security, hot showers and access to kitchen, lockers, billiards and games room.
  • Lula's B&B [17] is neither a hotel nor a hostel, but (as the Lonely Planet states) "a charming [family run] apartment-style B&B“. All the rooms are with private bathroom/shower-WC, international cable TV and WiFi (ADSL wireless). Owners speak (besides Spanish) English, German and French.
  • Koala Hostel [18] Puente Grau 108. ☎ +51 54 223622. In an old colonial building with a lovely courtyard. All types of rooms, arrange tours for you, and is very friendly and has no curfew. If using their bus ticket booking service check the price is comparable with other alternatives.
  • Buena Vista Hostal (Buena Vista Hostal), (20 min walk from the Plaza de Armas), (). Very basic hotel in one of the oldest and most pleasant suburbs. Breakfast may be of dubious quality. Keep your own record of expenses and incidental charges as they may get confused when it comes time for the final bill. From US$18/person.  edit
  • La Posada del Cacique, Jerusalen 404 (Cercado/Arequipa, near to the Plaza de Armas), +51 54 202170 (). Safe area, friendly and competent owner can give good assistance with tours such as hill climbing, colca canyon and similar. 25 soles/pp for a double with private bathroom.  edit
  • Hospedaje El Rosario del Solar, Pasaje del Solar No 124 (2.5 blocks from NW corner of Plaza de Armas), +51 54 222517. [] This quaint hospedaje in a quiet, safe, sillar-covered street in the Historical District is run by a friendly elderly woman very eager to help you acquire a tour of various parts of Arequipa which is comparable to what you'll find on Calle Jerusalen. One burner kitchen, WiFi, hot (sometimes) water showers, and laundry service for currently S/. 4 a kilo. From S/. 15 per person.  edit
  • Crismar Hotel, Calle Moral 107, [19] telephone: (+51) 54 215 290. Perfect location at only one and a half blocks from main plaza. This 3 star hotel offers single, double, twin, triple, quad rooms and suites. All the rooms are en-suite (shower or bath), have free Wi-Fi access and cable television.
  • Hotel Viza, calle Peru #202, [20]. Three blocks from the Plaza de Armas, $25 a nice room, includes breakfast and pick up from the airport.
  • Arequipa Youth Hostel, Calle Zela 313 (between Bolivar and 4th block of Santa Catalina). ☎ +51 959669253, ([email protected]). Singles, doubles, and dorms available from 20 soles/person. On a quiet street just 2 blocks from Plaza de Armas. Clean rooms. Patio area for socialising. Use of kitchen, no internet access. Friendly and helpful staff with tourist information.
  • Arequipay Backpackers at Urbanizacion Los Angeles de Cayma Mz. G1 (A few blocks from the main plaza). ☎ +51 54 275498. [21] ([email protected]),. Dorm bed 20 soles, including breakfast and hot showers.
  • Colonial House Inn, Calle Puente Grau 114. ("Arriba de la Plaza" to the taxi driver) A big old room facing the street for US$14, the rest are cheaper, good breakfast.
  • Bothy Hostel, [22] Calle Puente Grau 109. ☎ +51 54 282438. Sunny terrace, kitchen use, DVD room, hammocks and helpful staff. Lots of fun things going on- spanish lessons, bbqs, trips, tours, volunteering. 23 soles a night.
  • Home Sweet Home, Rivero 509. ☎ +51 54 405982. [23] Family run hostel, multilingual staff. Cosy bedrooms, wifi, terrace, laundry, travel agency. Great breakfast 5 soles. Dorm beds 25 soles.
  • Hostal Lluvia de Oro, Jerusalen 308. ( About three blocks from the main Plaza) ([email protected]). Friendly, in front of the tourist police station, nice patio, pick up from airport.
  • El Solar de la Macarena, Calle Jerusalen 531. ([email protected]). Opened in February 2008. Private bathrooms, nice shared kitchen, laundry, TV in every room, wifi. You can hang out on the roof or the 2nd floor terrace.
  • La Casona de Jerusalen, Jerusalen St #306-A (in front of the tourist police station), +51 54-205453 (, fax: ""checkin="24). Very friendly staff with great recommendations, Great location near everything, and quite enough to sleep like a baby, Clean rooms, Sunny terrace, free laptop use and free wifi, cableTV. Good thick towels and hot water. Very nice place to stay. US$9 (rooms with shared bathrooms)/$17 (rooms with en-suite bathrooms).  edit
  • El Albergue Espanol, Calle Peral 117. Relaxed place, authentic building, central located, rooftop terrace, free wifi (2 wifi networks for the whole building -> strong and fast!), nice staff, clean and very comfortable beds. Prices between 23 soles for a single with shared bathroom and 33 soles pp for a double with private bathroom and tv. No breakfast. Showers are solar powered, so not always really hot.  edit
  • La Reyna, Calle Zela 209 (On the corner of Zela and Santa Catalina, entrance is on Zela). Doubles (or matrimonials) with shared bathroom from 40 soles (including towels and breakfast) (todays is 29.11.2012). Clean basic rooms, nice terrace.  edit
  • Che Lagarto Hostels Arequipa, Ugarte 202, +51 (054) 226111, [6]. Online booking may be way cheaper than in-place booking (Dec 2014). Ask for wifi and use your device if you can.  edit
  • Los Andes Bed & Breakfast, La Merced 123 (30 mts. south from Plaza de Armas, on the west side), (01) 054 + 330015 (), [7]. checkout: 11.30am. Bright and clean, with an expansive and sunny terrace. Wifi, kitchen, hot water, breakfast (all-you-can-eat fresh breadrolls, jam and butter, tea, coffee, juice, fruit), even towels included. Rooms are cleaned every day. The shared bathrooms are separated by gender and definitely clean. S65 for a double with shared bathroom, Sept 2014.  edit
  • Peter's Hostel, San Juan de Dios 209 (located one block from Plaza de Armas, 3 minutes walk), +51 95 135 9601 (). checkin: 12.00pm; checkout: 10.00am. A new budget hostel adding a fresh vibe in Peru's white city. It occupies a rustic 3-storey building and have a very homey feeling. Rooms are very spacious and clean. Free and good wifi access throughout the hostel. It's got an extensive sun terrace where you can chillax. The hostel is pet friendly. This hostel hasn't have any name mentioned in the building yet but it's right across Tottus mega disco. Owned by Peruvian and Indonesian. Indonesian food are available upon request in advance. USD 5 for 6-beds dorm and USD 13 for double or twin room, (2017). All rooms are with shared bathroom.  edit


  • Hotel Scandinavia House [24] street Address:Calle Ugarte Santa Catalina Monastery. phone:51+54227542-cel:959693885.
  • Casablanca Hotel [25] Street Address: Puente Bolognesi 104. (10 steps from the Plaza de Armas of Arequipa) ☎ +51 54 221327. The entrance has the feeling of entering a neat wine cellar, but once you go up the stairs, there's a wonderful and large open room in the middle. The rooms are unusually large with high ceilings; street-facing rooms can be a bit noisy at night but have a pleasant balcony to sit on. Very clean and comfortable with friendly staff and good bread for breakfast (rare in Peru). Clean shower with moderately hot water. A twin was approximately US$45. Only extremely rudimentary English spoken. Stayed in and verified by User:Cluth; also listed in Lonely Planet.
  • Posada del Parque [26] Deán Valdivia 238-A. (5 minutes from Plaza de Armas). ☎ +51 54 21227. Located in an old colonial building with high ceilings. Budget dorms to semi-luxurious doubles. All rooms have speakers to plug in mp3/mp4/devices. Large rooftop area with tables and chairs is a great chill-out place. Free internet, a travel agency, kitchen, laundry, breakfast and drinks. Staff is friendly and helpful, some speak English. S/60.
  • Alwa Hotel [27] Address: Calle Malecón Chili # 9759 Chili Urb Los Pinos - Vallecito Arequipa - Peru Phone:5154284598 Alwa Hotel is in the residential area of Vallecito, five minutes from the main square. Vallecito is a place that is characterized by peace and quiet that allow guests to enjoy taking walks to witness the masterpiece of french architect Gustave Eiffel in his work embodied Iron Bridge which is located a few meters from our premises.
  • Hotel Maison d' Elise Arequipa [28] It will take 15 minutes to get from the local Alfredo Rodriguez Ballon airport and will cost approximately 15 to 17 nuevos soles on taxi.
  • La Casa de Melgar Arequipa Melgar 108 Cercado. (A few blocks away from the Plaza de Armas) [29]. ☎ +51 54 222459. Built into an old colonial house. Very atmospheric hotel with friendly staff.
  • Fundador Hotel Campo Redondo 109-111 San Lázaro, Cercado. [30]. ☎ +51 54 284848, telefax+51 54 286969. In the traditional district of San Lazaro, which is characterized by small alleys of sillar (volcanic stone blocks).
  • Los Tambos [31] Newly built and half block from Plaza de Armas. 2 night minimum stay, wifi throughout, à la carte breakfast and private transfers on arrival and departure.
  • Hotel Asturias [32]. Calle Ugarte 211. (A couple of blocks from the Plaza de Armas) Close to the Convento, good location. Rooms are small, but the hotel is recently refurbished, clean, and quiet. The staff is friendly and solicitous. There is internet, and breakfast is included. Travel agency on site. Double for US$45.
  • El Balcón. Calderón 202.([email protected]) ☎ +51 54 286998. Mansion decorated with a small number of rooms. Located on a small side street between the downtown and the river.
  • Hotel Queens Villa (15 blocks from the Plaza de Armas) [33] 3 stars with standard and deluxe rooms. Including breakfast, cafeteria and swimming Pool.


  • Le Foyer Arequipa (Hostal Le Foyer), Calle Ugarte 114 Cercado Arequipa (2 blocks north the main square through San Francisco Street), +51 54 286473 (), [8]. checkin: 12:00; checkout: 11:00. Great hostel with dorms and private rooms. We really enjoyed the breakfast on the rooftop and the views. We got a room with balcony which was great to enjoy the views from our room. Definitely a great choice! Privates from $21, breakfast included. (-16.396478,-71.535278) edit
  • Casa de Avila (Casa de Avila), Av. San Martin 116, Vallecito (4 blocks from main square), +51 959 556 335 (), [9]. Casa de Avila is a beautiful 1930s building refurbished as a hotel. The central courtyard is the main attraction of the place. Staff is friendly and helpful, and most speak English. A warm informal atmosphere to rest or work. WiFi, many Power Outlets, Ensuite rooms with energetic showers and comfortable beds. Spanish classes and cooking activities are available. Updated Tourist information. Great hub for travellers. From $38/room, buffet breakfast is included.  edit

Stay safe[edit]

All the usual advice given for Peru applies here as well. Arequipa feels like a somewhat safe city, and like in most of the other major Peruvian cities there is always a fairly large police presence. That said, don't unnecessarily flaunt your valuables or your money. Despite of this, there have been several robberies reported. DO NOT walk alone after 11.00PM in the downtown area!

In the downtown area, there is a fairly large presence of tourist police, wearing white shirts. Ask them for help.

The most common form is when a foreigner takes a no-name cab and some corners later other people are picked up to rob the tourist. To be safe, don't just hail any old cab that passes by. Always take branded taxis (of which you can see plenty). Several of these branded taxis are very careful about the owners/drivers they take on. Consequently, they are very reliable. The best of these is the "Turismo Arequipa" company with a green and white logo (watch out for fakes). "Taxitel" is also good.

The safest way to call a taxi is to ask your hotel or hostel to do it for you. Almost all hostels and hotels have a relationship with a taxi company whose drivers are known and trusted. This holds for the rest of Peru as well.

Do not forget, that UBER is operating in Arequipa, and that is also a very safe alternative.


Motorycle and Car parts and repair are generally concentrated along Puente Arnao. One inexpensive reapir option is Motocentro Arequipa at 337 Puente Arnao, but their customer service can be lacking at times and only comes in Spanish.

Get out[edit]

View of Chachani from El Misti
  • The Colca Canyon: It is possible to do it as a day trip that cost about US$20, the tour operator would pick you up from your hotel at 3:00 am to arrive at Chivay around 6:30 am, have a quick breakfast (included) and get to see the condors at the Colca Canyon at 8:00 am. Later, you'll take lunch (not incl.) at Chivay and stop at Patapampa viewpoint to take a few pictures.

The other alternative is to stay one night in Chivay to have a slight chance to see the birds early in the morning, tours pick you up at 9:00 am and in the night you get to see a folklore dance show. Besides that is mostly the same and prices start at US$25 depending on the accommodations.

  • Cuzco: There are many agencies offering bus trips from the main terminal to Cuzco. The price for the ~11h trip is 40 Pesos for a regular seat and 60 Pesos for a Cama bus (Sofa bed) (as of January 2019). If you leave around 8 pm, you will arrive in Cuzco around 7 am. It´s a very unpleasant trip the roads aren't in good conditions). Not all agencies have homepages, if you want to book your ticket in advance check the following: San Martin, Excluciva, Cromotex. There are many more, just ask around if you are at the terminal. If you arrive early, ask directly for more information, it´s busier in the afternoon.
  • There are many travel agencies, but only a few tour operators without commissions. The best operators are Andina (Jerusalen 402A), Peru Schweiz Explorer for Colca Canyon Tours (around 150 Soles for a 3D/2N trip) and Quechua Explorer (Jerusalen 508) for hill climbing. For guided and unguided trips you can also contact Rafael Llosa ([email protected])
  • allows travelers to connect directly with the best local tour and activity operators across South America. It’s an easy way to compare prices and itineraries of the best tours around Arequipa.
  • Chachani 6057 meters above sea level. Arrange transport with one of the adventure tour guides in town and be prepared for a 2-hour bumpy, swerving, scary drive around sharp curves up steep mountain roads. The base camp is over 5000 meters and the views are spectacular. If you are well-acclimated and have gear (ice axes and crampons) you should be able to summit from high camp in just over 8 hours. Otherwise just hike up the switchbacks to high camp (don´t stay there, you can´t sleep well at that altitude. Heed the mountaineer´s motto: "Hike high, Lie low") and then on to the col, from which you can see the beautiful view of Arequipa and surrounding mountains. The trek beyond can be dangerous if you´re not an experienced mountaineer. If you are, be prepared for a tough slog up dangerous scree and a treacherous traverse, and make sure you feel up to the return trip.
  • El Misti 5822 meters above sea level. Is a 2 day climb there are a lot of agencies in Arequipa offering the climb for around $50 US. First night camps at approx 4600m so it gets very cold. You wake up at 1 AM to make the summit for sunrise. Not at all a technical climb, you can pretty much walk to the top. It helps to be acclimatized as you can get pretty breathless up there.
  • Sogay Falls Located 20 km SE of Arequipa. Day tours cost around $25. As well as the waterfall (2 hours hike), you can see the Quequeña countryside and some stone glyphs.
  • Lake Salinas Located in the Salinas National Reserve, it's a major birdwatching location but you'll have to take a private tour. Right now its pretty easy to go there by yourself, take the bus from Av Sepulveda and it cost around 10S one way. <the bus leave pretty early around 6.30am and the journey takes about 3.5 hours. On the way back you can catch the bus from where you get off at around 4.30pm. No fees needed to enter the place.

Create category

This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!