Juanita Mummy Arequipa: The Incan Ice Maiden

Juanita Mummy Arequipa: The Incan Ice Maiden

A visit to see the Juanita mummy Arequipa, at the Andean Sanctuaries Museum, is a must while exploring Arequipa, Peru’s second largest city. At this small museum, you get to see Incan history eerily up-close as you meet face-to-face with the macabre Ice Maiden Juanita. This offers an unforgettable, vivid understanding of Incan human sacrifice. Aracari arranges private, guided tours of Arequipa, including the Andean Sanctuaries Museum, as part of any tailormade trip to Peru. Meeting the Juanita Mummy Arequipa Juanita, the 500-year old Ica Maiden Located only about a block…

Natural Hot Springs Colca

Natural Hot Springs Colca

Thanks to the seismic activity of the region, the Colca Canyon and Valley are sprinkled with natural hot springs, or thermal baths, where locals and tourists alike can relax in the warm embrace of Mother Nature. The hot springs vary in temperature, and are rich in sulfur, lithium, or iron, and thought to have medicinal healing properties. Colca is home to public baths (for which a small entrance fee is required) and private thermal hot springs at some of the best properties in Colca. The Best Natural Hot Springs…

Colca Canyon Condors

Colca Canyon Condors

Native to the mountains of South America that give the bird its name, the Andean condor can be spotted across the continent but arguably the best place to see these strikingly large animals is in the Colca Canyon of Peru. Located in the south of the country about a 4-hour drive from Arequipa, the Colca region is known for its dramatic landscapes, history, vibrant rural culture, and native condors. Aracari arranges private, tailormade trips to Arequipa and Colca where you can spot the majestic Colca Canyon condors! The best place to see Colca Canyon Condors…

Santa Teresa Monastery with Director Franz Grupp

Santa Teresa Monastery with Director Franz Grupp

Arequipa is easily one of the most charming cities in all of Peru, home to gleaming-white historic buildings made from volcanic ash, sillar, grand religious monasteries, and a rich cultural scene – hosting the annual literary Hay Festival. One of the city’s key attractions is Santa Teresa Monastery, a living-museum where cloistered nuns still reside to this day. Far less visited than nearby Santa Catalina Monastery, another major attraction and landmark in Arequipa, I had the opportunity to visit with one of Aracari’s specialist guides, Franz Grupp, the Monastery’s Director. Santa Teresa…

The Best Restaurants Arequipa

The Best Restaurants Arequipa

Peru is the food mecca of South America, proudly laying claim to a selection of the best restaurants in the world and the #1 restaurant in Latin America. Although the gastronomic publicity tends to focus on the capital, Lima, culinary adventures await the traveler wherever they go in this country. Each region has its own specialties and while you can find them elsewhere in the country there’s nothing like trying a dish in the place that gave birth to it. At Aracari, we have explored the vast culinary offerings in Arequipa…

Santa Catalina Monastery, Arequipa

Santa Catalina Monastery, Arequipa

The highlight of a visit to Arequipa is the Santa Catalina Monastery, one of the most impressive colonial religious buildings in Peru. The large convent is a ‘city within a city,’ covering over 20,246 square meters (218,000 square feet) and preserving the characteristics of 16th and 18th centuries, with narrow twisting streets, tidy plazas, colorful courtyards, and simple living quarters with Spanish names like Córdova, Sevilla, and Toledo. The delicate pastel colors of the buildings contrast with bright flowers, period furnishings, and religious art making it the picture-perfect place to explore some…

Community Based Tourism Colca

Community Based Tourism Colca

The Colca Valley is dotted with charming villages where the locals preserve the ethnic richness of their past more than any other region of Peru. Among the people there is deep rooted tradition and cultural pride that manifests in everything they do from their daily tasks to their unique clothing and hats. One of the best ways to understand the culture and immerse yourself into the everyday life of the people is to partake in community based tourism Colca. Aracari can arrange an experience with a local family in the village of Coporaque…

Visiting Uyo Uyo Ruins in Colca

Visiting Uyo Uyo Ruins in Colca

The history rich Colca Valley is scattered with ancient ruins. One of these sites, Uyo Uyo, is an especially great place to explore the ancient cultures of the region and Peru. Reachable either on foot or horseback, a visit to Uyo Uyo ruins is the ideal way to acclimatize to the high altitude of the region, while absorbing some of its cultural significance. Uyo Uyo Ruins Sitting on the right bank above the Colca River is the archaeological site of Uyo Uyo. A pre-Inca village attributed to the Collagua culture of the region that was…

Hay Festival Arequipa

Hay Festival Arequipa

Described by former U.S. President Bill Clinton as “Woodstock of the mind,” the international Hay Festival is an illuminative gathering of thinkers from around the world. For the first time in 2015, and bi- annually moving forward, a Hay Festival sister celebration took place in Arequipa, Peru congregating some of the intellectual minds of South America. The most recent Hay Festival Arequipa was in November of 2017, and the next is due to take place in 2019. If you are interested in traveling to Peru for one of its many festivals, contact us. Hay Festival…

Colca Canyon Churches

Colca Canyon Churches

Among the highlights of visiting the Colca Canyon in southern Peru are majestic condors, adventure activities like trekking, pre-Inca archaeology and terracing, and Colca Canyon churches from the colonial era. For the cultural connoisseur the quaint villages and period buildings are destinations in their own right, and for the outdoor enthusiast they make for delightful stops to the starting point of hikes or horseback rides. Whichever kind of traveler you are, Aracari can arrange the perfect tailormade trip to Peru for you to visit the Colca Canyon churches. Colca Canyon Churches A result…