lunes, 19 de febrero de 2018

Misti Volcano and surroundings of Arequipa

In our previous post Meeting The White City of Arequipa, we wrote a list of the main religious buildings, museums and colonial mansions of the city of Arequipa, which were located around the Historic Center, declared a World Heritage Site since 2000.

However, very close to the city, we can find some other places of interest that will not require more than a day for your visit (except the Misti, which will take us a little more effort).

Misti Volcano

At 20 Km to the northwest of Arequipa (one hour in a 4x4 vehicle) we can reach the slopes of the Misti volcano (5,825 meters above sea level) which is undoubtedly the symbol that presides over the landscape of the White City of Arequipa.

The good weather of the area allows a climb without too many difficulties, giving visitors the opportunity to do a climbing session to crown the summit and observe a panoramic view of the city and other smaller volcanoes: Chachani and Picchu Picchu.

It is necessary to have good physical conditions and no asthma problems, because the expedition lasts 2 days, with an average of 12 hours of walking to the summit, spending the night at 4,610 meters above sea level. The descent will be faster, taking about 4 hours. The best time for this hike is between July and November, when the temperatures are higher.

Viewpoint of Yanahuara

At 2 km from the Historic Center of Arequipa (about ten minutes on foot) is located this great arches viewpoint, built in white ashlar in which verses of local poets were engraved in bas-relief and from where you can observe the volcanoes Misti, Chachani and Pichu Pichu.

The district of Yanahuara where the viewpoint is located is characterized by its narrow and intricate streets, houses with orchards and the church San Juan de Yanahuara, baroque style dating from 1750, which is located in the main square.

The weather from the viewpoint -like the city- is mild, with an average of 15ºC (with maximums of 22ºC and minimums of 5.5ºC). Between January and March there are some rainy days, but the sun is present during 330 days of the year. The opening hours are from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm.


Sabandía is a beautiful and traditional village located only 8 km from Arequipa (20 minutes by car) is surrounded by the three volcanoes of the city: Misti, Chachani and Pichu Pichu. In its narrow streets we can still find houses of colonial or republican style; in addition, its two swimming pools stand out, which were filled with cold water from the springs of the area. The price for these pools is S/ 2 for adults and S/ 1 for children.

Another possibility is to take a horseback ride through the countryside for about S/5.

Sumbay Caves

These caves are located 85 km north of Arequipa following the road to Caylloma (1 hour and 45 minutes by bus) and are within the limits of the National Reserve of Salinas and Aguada Blanca, behind the Misti Volcano.

It is one of the most important manifestations of rock art in the country, with more than 500 figures between 6,000 and 8,000 years old. His pictography, which is in a good state of conservation, represents camelids of the area, human figures, pumas, foxes and the extinct suri - species of rhea.

The scenes show the daily life of the hunters of the place attacking the animals while they seem to flee. In addition to these paintings, stone instruments such as spearheads and arrowheads were found in the caves and adjacent areas. Also disc knives for cutting meat and bone used for cleaning skins, hard tissue and even for sewing.

Bike Rental

One fun and affordable option we can recommend is bike rental. Practically every travel agency will give you that alternative for about 100 S/ 100 per day, including gloves, helmet, and map of the area. These companies organize mountain bike volcano descents in the Chachani and Misti and can adjust to the times of the groups.

After these tours to the outskirts of the city of Arequipa we are surely looking forward to a good place to sleep and eat a good plate of traditional food. Continue reading our blog to learn more about where to sleep in Arequipa and where to eat in Arequipa.

Esteban García, Peru Travels Blog
February 2018

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