Arequipa sights

Old Sep 19th, 2009, 12:56 PM
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Arequipa sights

We're leaving for Peru in a couple of days and will be starting with several days in Arequipa to acclimate before going higher.

This is a low key portion of the trip, and we do already plan to see the Santa Catalina Monastery and perhaps one or two churches and the well known old mansions.

I'm just wondering if anyone has some interesting other suggestions for things to see and do in or near the city? Not looking for the very long day trip or overnight trips like Colca Canyon but interesting nearby villages, for a relaxed morning out, would be of interest to us.

Thanks!
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Old Sep 19th, 2009, 04:24 PM
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Make sure you have the Museo Santuarios Andinos on your list, where you can see the famous "Juanita, La Niña de los Hielos", the ice maiden.
Arequipa has some nice shopping. Not just crafts but very good quality alpaca products, some of the best in Perú. Well worth looking at. Ibérica chocolates have been around for a long time and they are excellent.
You could organise a tour of some of the surrounding suburbs and villages: Yanahuara, Sabandía, Sogay and Characato.
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Old Sep 19th, 2009, 07:11 PM
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Huentetu,

Thanks for the ideas. I've been doing some reading and a couple of your suggestions, the one's I could find some info on in Google, sound like they'd fit our needs just fine. The Museo, Yanahuara and Sabandia at the least should suit us. I read there was an old mill at Sabandia? That sounds nice enough to walk around.

Wondering if a tour is the only way to go, or could a small family get out and back by taxi in Arequipa? We're staying at a small but well recommended hotel just on the other side of the Selva Alegre from the center. Seems like they could probably arrange a taxi for us, but I'm not sure if it's the kind of place where it's normal for drivers to wait, as we've done in some other places (and if not, what the likelihood of getting hold of another taxi to bring us back from Sabandia. Just thinking aloud, getting a feel for the place).

Shopping options sound great, just that the timing isn't the best. Hopefully we won't get too tempted by all the nice things, as we're moving countries as soon as we get back. Packing for that is already just too much fun...

Thanks for the help!
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Old Sep 19th, 2009, 11:47 PM
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Any kind of hotel has some sort of driver and car they use for guests. There are buses to Sabandia (yes, there is an old mill)but it will be a lot easier not to rely on them. I think picking up a taxi to come back would be difficult but I am not sure. Drivers are used to waiting. Ask in your hotel what the protocol is about lunch for a driver.
There are 2 day overnight trips to the Colca Canyon which make the journey easier than a fast day tour. I didn't go, so maybe check what altitude you might get to on that trip. I find that up to high altitude and back in the day very tiring. I am sure someone on here has gone. Have a look through trip reports.
An alpaca pullover or scarf packs very small! Trust me, this is some of the best. Unless you are moving to the tropics, of course!
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Old Sep 20th, 2009, 08:29 PM
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Appreciate you not minding my followup stuff. Who knows, we may end up poking around from some alpaca things after all. We're heading for Australia, but it has been known to get a little chilly there around August.

I think we're in the same boat on the canyon and thinking we're probably not going. It seems to get pretty high along the way, and we're in Arequipa to acclimate, so that might be counterproductive. We need to be a little careful with one of the family. But we're looking forward to Arequipa all the same. It seems like a beautiful city and a good first taste of Peru.

We'll check into the driver and waiting for the day trips. Glad that that's normal - it's one of those things you never know. Some places, that's perfectly normal to have a driver wait around or work with you for the day. Others, the look you'd get if you asked a cab to wait... would be withering. Always good to know which type of place you're dealing with!

thanks
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