The cities of Puno and Arequipa
18.01.2012 - 27.01.2012 20 °C
We traveled from Cusco to the city of Puno, beside Lake Titicaca. The area lies 12500 feet above sea level, the largest lake in South America and the highest navigable lake in the world, and is unique for the multiple native cultures which reside around the lake and on the islands within the lake.
The land is arid and dry, but the views are amazing.
Following Puno, we traveled to Arequipa the second largest city in Peru and 4000 feet lower than Puno.
This colonial city is famous for its buildings made from a pearly white volcanic rock called sillar.
The city is ringed by three active volcanoes, all around 20,000 feet high, which provide a unique backdrop to the antique churches and scattered palm trees.
We decided to visit the Santa Catalina Monastary, a convent which was founded in 1580. It wasn't open to the public until 1979, at which point the treasure trove of hundreds-of-year-old china, statues, paintings, and architecture was able to be admired by all.
The nuns were well known for their baking, including pastries, muffins, and other sweet goodies. Kevin went looking for some.
Dirty habits were washed in large ceramic jugs by the numerous servants.
A dry wishing well in the kitchen!
Despite numerous earthquakes the convent has been restored beautifully and provided amazing views of the city and sunset.
Arequipa has provided us good food (Morrocan, Mexican, Italian, and French), great live rock music, and much needed rest and relaxation!