Museums in Arequipa: Discover Arequipa’s Rich Culture

Arequipa is rich with culture and history, which can be seen throughout the numerous museums in the city. These museums in Arequipa range from churches to exhibition areas to a memorial for an Inca girl that has been preserved for over 500 years. These museums allow the visitor to feel as though they’ve been transported back in time and provide fantastic insights into the lives of the people who inhabited Arequipa hundreds of years ago.

Museo de Arte Virreinal Santa Teresa
This is a 17th century carmelite convent that is open to the public. The convent is filled with beautiful metalwork, colonial-era paintings and other historical artifacts.In the convent, there are 13 exhibition halls, a candy store and a souvenir shop. Fresh pastries baked by the nuns and soap made from the roses of the convent’s garden are among the products available for purchase in the convent. The tour is given by a student tour guide who speaks a variety of languages. The cost of admission tickets ranges from 5 – 20 soles and the convent is open from 9-5, Monday – Saturday.
(Address: Melgar 303, Arequipa, Peru)

Basilica Cathedral of Arequipa
The construction of the first church in the main square began in 1544 and the architect was Pedro Godinez. In 1940, the cathedral was elevated to the category of a minor basilica by Pope Pius XII. Inside the Basilica Cathedral of Arequipa, there are many valuable objects that present a history of over 400 years. Since the beginning of its construction in 1544, the Basilica Cathedral of Arequipa has been reduced to rubble on numerous occasions by earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Constant restoration has been required to keep the cathedral standing throughout the years.
(Address: Plaza De Armas, Arequipa, Peru)

Museo Santuarios Andinos
This is a museum dedicated to the preserved, frozen body of a young Inca girl. The girl on-show in the museum was sacrificed to the gods in the 1450s and is known as ‘Juanita’. The guided tour is compulsory and while it is free, a tip is expected. During the tour, you will be brought through a series of dimly-lit rooms, housing artifacts from the expedition which led to the discovery of Juanita. Alongside these artifacts, there is also a short 20 minute video, detailing how Juanita was found. The tour lasts for about 1 hour and is offered in Spanish, English and French. While she is the main attraction of the museum, from January to April, Juanita is swapped for another ‘mummy’.
(Address: Calle la Merced 110, Arequipa)

With as many museums as Arequipa has, it is no wonder that travellers flock from all corners of the globe to delve into this region’s rich culture and history. If you would like to learn more about The White City in a unique way, I’d recommend booking a free walking tour through, a safe and reliable trip comparison site operating in South America.
Have a great trip and stay safe!

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You must see:

Arequipa Volcano