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Overview

On a fertile oasis in the desert of southern Peru, Arequipa - the White City - squats at the foot of craggy volcanoes and shimmers in the constant sunlight. The pearl coloured mansions and churches, shady arches, spires and unreconstructed grid of gabled colonial houses have a middle-eastern flavour. The small shops and cafés and flowery plazas make it a great place to relax, and to get accustomed to the altitude (2,335m) if heading into the Andes.

From here a lonely road heads 83km up through a wind-sculpted wilderness to plunge into the cavernous Colca Canyon, in the shelter of which pre-Inca communities built astounding amphitheatres of agricultural terracing which survive to this day.

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Things to do

Look into things to do in Arequipa and the Colca Canyon in southern Peru. Book your tour of Peru with Journey Latin America now.

Where to go when - our guide to Arequipa and Colca Canyon

Colca Canyon

The weather in Arequipa and Colca Canyon is wide and varied

Arequipa enjoys pleasant weather for most of the year, with some 360 days of sunshine. Temperatures are pleasant, warm enough to wear a shirt during the day and perhaps a light jumper at night. The higher altitudes of the Colca Canyon region make for much colder nights, particularly in the driest months of June to September. Rain is most likely between November and March. The condors are considered to be at their most active from late March to June.

View our Arequipa and Colca Canyon weather guide

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Your edit for Latin American inspiration

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Real Latin America Experts

  • Hannah Waterhouse
    Hannah Waterhouse - Travel Expert

    Hannah had an early introduction to Latin America when her family moved to Ecuador and she returned to study in Buenos Aires for a year before backpacking across the continent.

  • Carrie Gallagher
    Carrie Gallagher - Travel Expert

    A former JLA tour leader, Carrie brings a wealth of on-the-ground experience to our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours department.

  • Millie Davies
    Millie Davies - Travel Expert

    Having caught the travel bug as a child, Millie has travelled all over Latin America before making her home in Buenos Aires for 3 years.

  • Mary Anne Nelson
    Mary Anne Nelson - Travel Expert

    Born in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, Mary’s insider knowledge and dry sense of humour make her a highly valued member of the Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tour sales team.

  • Charlotte in Bolivia
    Charlotte Daubeney - Travel Expert

    Charlotte's fascination with Latin America began with a family holiday to Belize. She went on to study Spanish in school and at university before spending a year living in Santiago, Chile.

  • Sophie Barber
    Sophie Barber - Travel Expert

    Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia and beyond to Antarctica.

Meet the team