The city of Arequipa itself, Peru’s second most populous city, is a UNESCO heritage site, due to the imposing white Spanish colonial buildings throughout the city. It is a fun city, with excellent restaurants, but the reason to go to Arequipa is for the landscape of the surrounding environs. At nearly 8,000 feet, wedged between the coast and the Andes Mountains, the region is one of the highest altitude deserts, dotted with a series of volcanoes. It is magnificent.
From Arequipa, we took an overnight trip to Chivay, notably in order to visit the Colca Canyon and watch the flight of the condors.