Brad and I thought that it would be fun to have a post about the places we will see each Saturday. Since we are in school on the weekdays we do not get around to see the city. So we have set Saturdays aside for all sight-seeing. We will also try a new restaurant and write a little review.
Today we walked to Plaza de Armas and the surrounding area called "The Center."
Here is Tyler in his "sun gear." The sun in Peru is very strong. I have heard that they have numerous cases of skin cancer. We are trying to stay well covered with clothing or sunblock. Tyler does not like the sunblock nor the hat as you can tell from his face.
This cathedral was originally constructed in 1656 but was gutted by fire in 1844 and destroyed in the earthquake of 1868. The cathedral was rebuilt and still stands today. Another earthquake hit Arequipa in 2001, which brought down one of the towers but did not cause major damage.
This is a beautiful fountain in Plaza de Armas. I was amazed at the number of pigeons that were around this area. It was disgusting really. The water looks better from a distance!
This is a view of the Plaza from the restaurant.
This is another part of the cathedral.
We walked down many of the side streets and were able to find the Santa Catalina Monastery and various museums. The one museum we were looking for is called Museo Santuarios Andinos and houses the famous mummy, Juanita. And true to our luck, Juanita is off of display until May. We decided to skip this museum and come back in May.
Plan B was to view the monastery after eating lunch. But once again we missed the last entrance time by several minutes. We concluded that this Saturday was actually just a scouting day and the actual sight-seeing would begin next week!
We would like to add a section titled Cultural Lessons Learned:
In our scouting efforts Brad was able to get his shoes shined and had what we will call a "cultural oops." The man advertised a shoe shin for 1 sole and after completing one shoe gave Brad the price list and pointed out that it actually cost 32 soles as he added polish. So Brad could either pay the 32 and have the other shoe match or...we weren't sure. It ended up that we paid 20 soles and Brad had matching shoes. The lesson learned: always agree on cost before service. Side note: 20 soles equals $6.25 in U.S. dollars so it wasn't too bad!
We chose to eat at a restaurant on the top of a building. Brad estimates that it was around 80 feet tall. It was a great way to see Plaza de Armas. It had very good service and the prices we figured were about average ($6 to $10 USD a plate) for a nice restaurant in Peru. The menu was extensive and was written in Spanish and English which we appreciate greatly.
Tyler gave it "thumbs up" but then he only had bites of my potato chips and some guacamole.
Brad gave it "thumbs up" and he had Alpaca steak with potatoes with mint whipped topping. He really liked the steak as it was very tender and had a gamey flavor. He did not care for the mint flavored whipped topping on his potatoes.
Michelle gave it "thumbs down" and didn't bother taking a picture of the chicken, guacamole and mozzarella sandwich as it was rather pathetic. I guess I should try something a little more adventurous next time.
So the restaurant(we forgot to get its name) received 2 out of 3 thumbs from the Hunt Family.
This concludes our first Saturday Peru Review. Stay tuned for next week's adventure!