Four hour’s drive away from Arequipa, this spectacular valley hosts the archaeological legacy of ancient inhabitants of the region named the Collagua people. The canyon is also home to the famous Andean Condor and ancient terraced hillsides which were built by the Incas for agricultural purposes. A great place for walking, horse riding, hot springs or generally relaxing in the warm sunshine.
It is one of the deepest canyons on earth reaching a depth of 3,400 metres at the lowest point. This is thought to be twice as deep as the Grand Canyon in the USA! However unlike most of the Grand Canyon, portions of the Colca Canyon are still habitable with pre Colombian terraced fields still supporting agriculture and human life.
The area possesses a great diversity of flora and fauna. Among the most representative species are the condor, kestrel, peregrine falcon and the Andean Tinamou. Most famous for condor spotting, the Colca Canyon offers the chance to see them at fairly close range as they float on the rising thermals and scan for carrion far below them.
Chivay is the small time located at the beginning of the Colca Canyon and here you will find a couple of accommodation and restaurant options. Between Callali, at the high end of the Colca Canyon, and Tapay, at one of the furthest points, there are a few accommodation options spread out making the most of the views.
Colca Canyon can be visited at any time of year, but it is most beautiful outside the rainy season (December – April). Be prepared for cool nights in June, July and August
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