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About Arequipa City

The white city

Convento La RecoletaCatedral de ArequipaMonasterio de Santa Catalina Arequipa is a large city in southern Peru and the nation's second most important city. It is also the capital of the Arequipa Province. The city lies in the highlands on 2'300 m at the foot of the world famous volcanoes Misti, Chachani and Pichu Pichu. Arequipa has more than 900'000 inhabitants and is also closed to Cotahuasi and Colca Canyon, two of the deepest canyons in the world.

Arequipa is also called "the white city", since a lot of buildings were built of sillar, a pearly white volcanic rock. The town gives its visitor a multifaceted architecture, for example churches, convents and a lot more that are all worth it to visit.

Arequipa was founded on the 15th August 1540 by Manuel García de Carbajal. The name comes from the quechua phrase "Arequipai" which means "Stay here", and the name is appropriate as it seems that the streets, the sillar (white volcanic rock) walls and the friendliness of the people, emit a strange force, an unusual impulse compelling you to stay in the city.


In general terms, the climate in Arequipa is mild, with a temperature varying between 24 and 10 degrees centigrade.

A good time to visit Arequipa is the month of August. On the 15th August the city turns into a huge celebration, marking the anniversary of its Spanish foundation, which took place in 1540. There are markets, fireworks and bullfights.

During the winter months (June-August) the climate is a bit cold at night and at dawn, but in the mornings and afternoons, the sunshine warms the atmosphere.

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