Pigeons and people populate the late afternoon square in front of the cathedral
Like the Santa Catalina Convent, Arequipa’s main square (Plaza de Armas) is part of the city’s world heritage-listed historic centre.
Surrounded by the Basilica Cathedral of Arequipa to the north and portals to the east, south and west, the plaza is a wonderful place to relax, watch the world go by and politely decline unsolicited offers.
A giant ribbon in national colours on the eastern portal (Portal de los Flores) prior to Peru’s independence day (28 July); Mt Misti is in the background
The best plaza views:
- During the day: Katari Hotel’s rooftop restaurant on top of the southern portal (Portal de la Municipalidad). The three surrounding volcanoes, Chachani, Misti and Pichu Pichu, are all visible from here as viewed in this post’s feature image.
- At sunset: Restaurant at the Top at the northernmost end of the eastern portal (Portal de las Flores); Rocío and I used to enjoy passion fruit sours here while watching the sun go down. Sometimes, if the sunset looked promising, we would run across town to make the rooftop in time.
The Misti Volcano behind the nexus of the cathedral and eastern portal (Portal de las Flores); photo taken from Katari Hotel’s rooftop restaurant
The cathedral at sunset from Restaurant at the Top
A pelargonium at Restaurant at the Top silhouetted against the setting sun
The sun setting west of the plaza as viewed from Restaurant at the Top
The square at dusk from Restaurant at the Top
The cathedral and portals are all constructed out of sillar, a volcanic stone synonymous with Arequipa.
The sun setting through the southern portal (Portal de la Municipalidad).
The southern portal (Portal de la Municipalidad) featuring Arequipa’s official dark red colour in the city’s flags and bunting
The central plaza fountain features at the top a sculpture of a pixie, Tuturutu
People taking a selfie in front of the central fountain