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Arequipa is a region in southwestern Perumarker. It is bordered by the Icamarker, Ayacucho, Apurímac and Cusco regions on the north; the Puno Region on the east; the Moquegua Region on the south; and the Pacific Oceanmarker on the west. Its capital, also called Arequipamarker, is Peru's second-largest city.


This region has a rough topography which is characterized by heavy layers of volcanic lava covering large areas of its inter-Andean sector. It has deep canyons like the ones formed by the Ocoña and Majes rivers as opposed to medium-altitude plateaus such as La Joya, and high-altitude ones such the Arrieros Pampa and those located in the zones of Chivay, Huambo and Pichucolla. Volcanic cones are seen in this area emerging above the plateaus and forming snowfalls, such as Mistimarker, Chachanimarker, Ampatomarker, Mismimarker, Solimana and Coropuna. In contrast with these heights, there are deep and impressing canyons, including Majes, Colcamarker, Sihuas and Ocoña where important aspects of the ecological evolution of this zone can be clearly observed.

In the Coast, small plateaus and dunes represent characteristics of the desert of Arequipa, like the ones located in the Majes, Sihuas and La Joya pampas which are particularly beautiful and developed.

From a hydrographic point of view, the rivers draining its territory belong mainly to the Pacific watershed but there are also some rivers belonging to the Amazon hydrographic system. Some of the region's main rivers are: Ocoña, Yauca, Camana and Quilca. The starting point of the Amazon River, the longest river on Earth, is located in the Arequipa region.

Points of interest

There are numerous points of interest in the Arequipa region. The three coastal provinces, Caraveli, Camana and Islay all have popular beaches. Various ports can also be found along the coastline, the two most important being Mollendomarker and Matarani, both in the province of Islay.

The Colca Canyonmarker, twice as deep as the Grand Canyonmarker, is in the province of Caylloma and the Cotahuasi Canyon is in the province of La Union. Colca Valley provides incredible close-up views of majestic Andean condors soaring in their natural habitat. Cotahuasi, at 3535 meters, is presently thought to be the deepest canyon in the world. Both canyons offer spectacular scenery and villages as yet unaffected by the modern world.

In the province of Castilla, by the town of Corire is Toro Muerto where one can see more than 3,000 petroglyphs. Further to the north, near the town of Andaguas, lies the Valley of Volcanoes where almost 100 cones of various sizes dominate the lava-hardened landscape.

Political division

An Andean condor soars over the Colca Canyon.
Provinces of the Arequipa region

The region is divided into eight provinces (provincias, singular: provincia), which are composed of 109 districts (distritos, singular: distrito). The provinces, with their capitals in parenthesis, are:
  1. Arequipa (Arequipamarker)
  2. Camaná (Camanámarker)
  3. Caravelí (Caravelímarker)
  4. Castilla (Aplaomarker)
  5. Caylloma (Chivaymarker)
  6. Condesuyos (Chuquibambamarker)
  7. Islay (Mollendomarker)
  8. La Unión (Cotahuasi)

See also

External links

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