Would you like to know the reason behind the ‘White City’ name? Here we’ll tell you all about the emblematic volcanic stone that forged the authentic colonial structures within the Historical City Center of Arequipa. The Sillar Route will take you through a natural wonder that took millions of years to create, a natural scenery like no other!
Right at the outskirts of the city lies the volcanic quarries of Añashuayco, from where white ashlar is extracted. This volcanic material was used for the construction of almost every structure in Arequipa’s old town.
If you’ve been following our Arequipa Travel Guide, you must already know about the main attractions in the colonial center, where towering religious buildings rise from the heart of the city, characterized for their particular whitish coloration.
Among the perfect examples of colonial architecture are: The Santa Catalina Monastery, the Cathedral of Arequipa and the Yanahuara Viewpoint. However, there are so many more Sillar Blanco attractions to visit that you must take a day off your trip itinerary to explore the city at its fullest.
If you’re eager to know this volcanic paradise, then you must take the Ruta del Sillar with us! Find out everything about it while you’re here.
1. Cantera de Añashuayco
The Cantera de Añashuayco is located at the foothills of the Chachani Volcano, an ancient guardian in Arequipa that has remained inactive for centuries though millions of years ago managed to create a special quarry thanks to its eruptions along with the other volcanoes in the area.
Ruta del Sillar looks to promote the importance of this volcanic material, as well as its use and preservation. Although the quarries are still worked by stonemasons, this group of craftsmen have artistically adapted the place for tourism.
Here you’ll get to know even more about Sillar Blanco, going beyond the geologic history behind this natural wonder, to a more architectural and artistic purpose.
The Añashuayco Quarries offer an otherworldly scenery with 30-meter walls, narrow halls, beautiful sculptures and carvings that will surely be the highlight of your trip.
2. Quebrada de Culebrillas
To complement the tour, we have added another attraction to visit, a quarry that has remained nearly intact since pre-Columbian times but also holds a part of our ancestor’s history.
Quebrada de Culebrillas is a National Heritage Site that guards a series of petroglyphs that were traced back to the Wari culture. The route will take you through an unspoiled scenery, where only nature and ancient communities have marked these lands.
07:30h - 08:00h | Pick up from the hotel
Our team will pick you up at your accommodation. It will take between 45-60 minutes to get to the quarries from Arequipa.
09:00h - 10:00h | Canteras de Sillar Tour
Here you’ll get to explore the Canteras de Añashuayco, while also getting to know the extraction process and all the things that can be built with this volcanic rock. Finishing the tour, we’ll continue on a 45-minute ride to the Quebrada de Culebrillas.
10:45h - 11:15h | Walk through Quebrada de Culebrillas
On this occasion, you’ll walk to very narrow halls, surrounded by 20-meter walls where we’ll be able to spot the different petroglyphs carved in the stones.
11:15h - 12:00h | Arrival to Arequipa
Once we are done with the excursion, our team will take you back to Arequipa so you can continue exploring its beautiful streets and extensive history.
Important Note: If you prefer to take a private tour through the Sillar Route, we have the perfect option for you! Get in touch with our team and start planning your dream vacation.
If you wish to experience this tour at its fullest, we have the perfect adventure for you. Keep in mind that you can organize your trip according to your interests, we are here to help you with any inquiry you may have, including assistance during your travel planning process.
To book the Ruta del Sillar Tour, you just need to contact our travel specialists. Our local expert team will make sure to optimize your time and adventure with a tailored-made travel itinerary for you.
Likewise, we care to provide the best experience to each and every one of our passengers, which is why we count with certified drivers, professional guides, and an all-time monitored car fleet with GPS tracking.
- Duration: 04 hours approx.
- Entrance: Already included in the travel package.
- Included: Transport, entrance ticket, english speaking guide, pick up at the hotel.
Arequipa is a region full of natural wonders, history and culture, which is why we'd love to show you everything about it. If you would like to know more about the famous White City, here you have a blog about the top things to do in Arequipa.
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