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The San Camilo market in Arequipa

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The San Camilo market in Arequipa

Many times we focus so much on the historical and cultural attractions of Arequipa that we forget that the most "human" side of every Peruvian city is in its central market, in this case the Mercado San Camilo de Arequipa. 

The traditional San Camilo market is the main market in the city of Arequipa. Unmissable during your visit to Arequipa, since it has the famous juices prepared at the moment with natural fruits from the hands of our famous Arequipa juicers. 

History of the San Camilo Market

Mercado San Camilo was designed by the famous French architect Gustave Eiffel. (The same one that built the famous Eifel Tower in Paris, France). The market was built on the land of what was a church and cloisters of the order of the Camilos parents that began to be built in 1905. The San Camilo Market is considered a Monumental Historical Heritage Representative of Public Civil Architecture. It is one of the oldest markets in the city with an age of 130 years.

Since the city of Arequipa was founded, it did not have a large supply center, but market purchases were made in the Pulperías (today similar to a warehouse) and on Sundays in the Plaza Mayor, where awnings were seen of the sales stalls of the peddlers (street vendors) that sold staple foods, in the background the portals of the municipality whose heights were closed arches with windows, which were used as offices of the notaries (today's notaries), and on top on top The dome and tower of the Church of the Company The church and cloisters occupied by the order of the Camillian fathers could not be restored after the earthquake of 1868, and everything had to collapse to build the Market of supplies of the city between 1905 and 1910, which remains today with the name Mercado de San Camilo. 

What to see and do in the San Camilo Market?

Something curious about this market is that despite being one of the most visited tourist attractions in Arequipa, there is no tour that takes you to see it, so pay attention so as not to miss the most important activities: 

  • Drink a fresh fruit juice: Nothing richer, healthier and more nutritious than including a fruit juice in your breakfast that has been prepared before your eyes.
  • Eat the traditional stuffed hot pepper: It is true that you can try it in any Arequipa spicy restaurant, but in the San Camilo Market you will find the stuffed hot pepper with a homemade flavor and at a low price.
  • Buy artisan cheeses: In the market you will find cheese molds from different regions of Peru made in an artisanal way, they are too rich to describe!
  • Acquire a sample of Arequipa handicrafts: As a tourist place cannot miss, in this market you will find a variety of souvenirs that you can take to give to your relatives or for yourself. For example you will find: dolls, ceramics, key chains, hats, etc.
  • Get lost in the streets of the market: There are passageways after passageways that you have to walk in the San Camilo market in its more than 100 m², where food, fruits, dairy products, medicinal herbs, holistic products, dried herbs and offerings to Pachamama stand out.
  • Attend the Procession of the Lord of Forgiveness: Patron saint of the market, it is taken out in procession on Saturdays of the Passion of Holy Week. 

Important information to visit the San Camilo Market

Take note of the following summary so that you can get to know the San Camilo Market on your own. 

Schedule

The San Camilo Market is open from Monday to Saturday from 6:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and on Sundays it operates from 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. 

Price

Admission to the market is free, with regard to food prices, these range between S/ 5 to S/ 15. 

Location

The San Camilo Market is located between Alto de la Luna, Peru, San Camilo and Piérola Streets in the Historic Center of Arequipa (see map below). 

How to get to San Camilo Market?

You can walk to the San Camilo Market from the Plaza de Armas in Arequipa, the approximate distance is 600 meters. 

Another alternative is to take a taxi, in which case the cost is around S/ 5 each way.

Best Tours in Peru

Many are the routes that take you to Machu Picchu, but none is like the Inca Trail Tours, the most famous pedestrian path in the Americas. After flying from the capital of Perú, Lima, you will arrive in Cusco to walk for four days along a path through forests and dense fog, millenary stone steps and discovering the ruins of ancient fortifications and Inca cities, and all the time enjoying majestic views. 

If you want to visit Machu Picchu, we recommend you to book your Machu Picchu Ticket in advance, so you will enjoy your Vacation in Machu Picchu without any problem. 

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