Exploring Arequipa

We are starting to have our little routines in cities/towns in South America. For me I like to get my legs waxed at least once on the trip – a lot cheaper than NZ and fun to search out. I had two women – mas rapido – much faster – was the reason and they did a good job. We also find the closest bakery and local store and, when not eating out, we eat lotsa bread buns with cheese, tomato etc and fruit/yoghurt mixes. We also like to find and hang out in the main Plaza and people watch and we love wandering through the locals market amongst the stacks of cheese, past the meat stalls and the walls of fruit and vegetables.

After our initial poke around we visited The Monastario de Catelina which is a cloistered convent dating back to 1579, not long after the Spanish arrived. There are still twenty nuns living there but they are not living in the historic section where all the tourists wander. It is considered the most impressive colonial structure in Arequipa taking up a large city block and made from local white volcanic block and sections are painted in red or blue from natural pigments. As we saw it, looking around, it looked like a nice place to hang out if you wanted to escape from the outside world and men. Though there were some boxes that apparently contained the hearts and a tongue of some bishops who were close to the nuns – bizarre.

The Plaza de Armas in Arequipa
Yum, cheese, my favourite
The vege section
Potatoes for all occasions
Never walk past the juice bar
Message on the monastery entrance arch
And I thought rubber plants grew in a pot
The nuns cells were generous in size, often including a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom/prayer room and for some a sitting room


For my sewing friends a special looking sewing machine
And the blue section of the monastery.
the monastery was like a small neighbourhood with streets
Looking into the street from one of the ‘cells’
Calle Toledo, the narrowest street
The laundry area, anti gravity fed large tubs for the laundry girls to work at.
Even nuns get the calling…
The well inside the communal kitchen
the nutritious guinea pig used to be on the menu, hopefully these cuties were just to show what the area was used for.
Nice view from the church roof
And another lovely sunset from our rooftop, with volcan Misti
Only 5.30pm…going to be some long nights ahead