All about the Yanahuara lookout point
The Yanahuara lookout point is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Arequipa. It was built in the 19th century in the neighborhood of the same name. It is made up of several arches made of ashlar, a volcanic stone abundant in the region. On its facade are registered thoughts of some of the most illustrious characters of the city. From there you have a view of the city as well as the most famous snowy trains in the region: the Chachani, the Pichu Picchu and the Misti.
The lookout point is located in the Yanahuara neighborhood, 2 kilometers from the Main Square in Arequipa.
How to get there?
Starting from the Main Square, you must cross the Chili River and follow the path that leads to Avenida El Ejército. Then, it continues through narrow and picturesque streets until arriving at the Yanahuara lookout point. Although it is possible to get there on foot, some people prefer to take a taxi.
Yanahuara refers to the 'Yanaguara' culture who inhabited the eastern banks of the Santo Tomás River in Arequipa before the arrival of the Incas. These first inhabitants of the 'White City' were expert farmers and herders of llamas and alpacas. With the arrival of the Spanish they were displaced. The Yanahuara neighborhood became a reduction of Indians. Today, it is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Arequipa.
The lookout point
The Yanahuara lookout point was built in the 19th century during a process of beautification of the place. It is located right in front of a park and next to a church of colonial origin called 'San Juan Bautista'. Its streets are narrow and have an Andalusian style that give it a magical atmosphere. The lookout point is made of ashlar found at the foot of the Chachani, Pichu Picchu and Misti mountains (the most famous volcano in the city). The lookout point has inscriptions on its facade with popular quotes from Arequipa as well as quotes from important Arequipa thinkers. Nearby is the sale of different types of crafts as well as different tourist services such as: restaurants, cafes, hotels and more.
The volcanoes of Arequipa
The Chachani – It is located 55 kilometers from the city. It is situated at 6,057 meters above sea level. It is relatively easy to climb. Its snows have decreased due to the affect of global warming.
The Pichu Picchu – It is located 32 kilometers in a straight line from the city of Arequipa. It is made up of several peaks. The highest, the 'Coronado' reaches 5,665 meters above sea level. In this snowy mummies of Inca human sacrifices were found.
The Misti – The Misti volcano is one of the symbols of Arequipa. It is located 23 kilometers from the 'White City'. Its summit rises to 5,820 meters above sea level. Various studies show that the Misti erupted on several occasions, the last and with the greatest force was in Inca times. There, human sacrifices of six Inca skeletons were found.
Ashlar is a stone of volcanic origin that was taken as the basis for the construction of the main temples, palaces, streets and facades of the city of Arequipa until the 19th century. This material arose due to the eruptions of the Chachani volcano 13 and 2 million years ago, respectively. In the 19th century, ashlar was used to build the Yanahuara lookout point.
The use of ashlar in Arequipa dates from pre-Inca times (such as the Wari buildings in Uchumayo). During the colony, this material was used for various buildings such as: the Bolognesi bridge, the churches of La Merced, Santo Domingo, La Compañía de Jesús, the Monastery of Santa Catalina and more. Currently, there is a tour called 'La ruta del sillar'.
How much does it cost to go?
The visit to the Yanahuara lookout point is free for all people.
The visit to Yanahuara is included in some services of 'City Tour Arequipa', which cost approximately 60 US dollars.
What else to see?
Yanahuara Church – The San Juan Bautista de Yanahuara church is a baroque temple with an admirable façade. It was built in the 18th century. It is made up of a single nave on which a barrel vault stands out. On the outside there is a beautiful decoration where the image of San Juan Bautista, the patron saint of the church, also stands.
Yanahuara Square – The small Yanahuara square stands out for its cozy atmosphere with green areas, swimming pool and dozens of tourist services such as handicraft shops, lodgings and restaurants. It borders on one side with the colonial church and, on the other, with the Yanahuara lookout point.
Crystal lookout point in Yanahuara – The Yanahuara square stands out for the presence of a lookout point made of glass that, raised 50 meters by a crane, offers one of the best views of the city of Arequipa. This alternative is recommended for people who are not afraid of heights. Security is guaranteed.
Throughout its history, Arequipa suffered several earthquakes. The earthquakes of the last decades occurred in 1942, 1979 and 2001. The Yanahuara lookout point has withstood these earthquakes of strong proportions.
The Yanahuara lookout point is one of the most photographed places by tourists visiting Arequipa. The place is safe as there is police surveillance throughout the day.
During your visit, do not forget to bring light clothing accompanied by a jacket as the climate is mild. Wear some comfortable running shoes to get you around the streets. Finally, do not forget to bring a good camera to capture the famous lookout point of Yanahuara.
Yanahuara is not the only traditional neighborhood in the city of Arequipa. During your visit, do not forget to walk the streets of the neighborhoods of San Lázaro, Cayma, Sabandía and others. There you can enjoy delicious Arequipa food. Don't forget to try the adobo or the stuffed hot pepper.