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Visit Tarma, the Pearl of the Andes

Tierras Vivas Travel > Visit Tarma, the Pearl of the Andes

Visit Tarma, the Pearl of the Andes

In the central highlands of Peru, surrounded by flowery fields, lies the peaceful city of Tarma, just 5 hours away from Lima. It is located in the department of Junín, between the Amazon and Andean zones. It is called “The Pearl of the Andes” because of the beautiful landscapes full of color that it gives to the most enthusiastic travelers on each visit (rainbows and nature will make you feel like in Narnia). 

Its air is one of the cleanest and purest that can be breathed on Peruvian soil, and its sky is clear in high definition, HD, 3D, 4K with large white clouds in which you can see fantasy shapes (a Cristiano Ronaldo or a Godzilla darting through the air, it depends on your imagination). 

And it is that Tarma is a beauty worthy of a contest (we love Tarma, we are not going to deny it). If you are a fan of landscaping or trekking, in Tarma you will find paradise, with angelic clouds and steep paths that are surrounded by the color of flowers. 

Yeah, yeah, a lot of flowers, I’m more interested in archeological sites… 

Don’t worry, nephew, there is something for everyone! 

In the Tarmeño territory inhabited the culture (you don’t know what it’s called) … Tarma. Or well, Taruma, it’s all a matter of taste. In both cases, Tarma or Taruma was the ancestral culture that bequeathed us architectural and archaeological remains, so great that you won’t think twice about putting on your Indiana Jones costume and venturing into its ruins. 

The Tarumas were a tribe dedicated mainly to agriculture (one of the activities in which Tarma stands out in our days) and livestock (in those days there were no cows or pigs, since these were introduced later by the Spanish, but they practiced a very different type of livestock of which there are few records). 

Unfortunately, the Tarumas (or Tarmas) disappeared after the Inca invasion led by the Inca Pachacutec (the imposing Inca who almost dominates the entire Andean world). But, come on, don’t be discouraged, the Taruma legacy survives spiritually in the customs, archaeological remains and the life of the city of Tarma and its flowery surroundings, in its houses that seem to combine antiquity with modern life and in its inhabitants with a cheerful smile. 

Tarma Tourism

The city of Tarma is located within the province of the same name, of which it is the capital. It is located in the Junín region. This city is known as “The Pearl of the Andes” because of its splendid climate. 

The city of Tarma, presents among its different tourist attractions, sites such as the Mirador de Carhuacatac; This viewpoint is located on the hill and offers a wonderful view of the city, as well as the beautiful valley that surrounds Tarma, and in which that same city sits. 

Other attractions of the city are its beautiful main square; Said scenario is a historical environment that is considered important, because it was in that one where the proclamation of the independence of this city took place. Around this square, there are important government and religious buildings, among the latter the Cathedral of Tarma stands out, which was created under the protection of Santa Ana. 

The Cathedral of Santa Ana, is located in one of the vertices of the main square of the city. Said building is a republican construction that was completed in 1954. The temple of Santa Ana dresses up for a party, especially during key dates such as Holy Week or the October celebrations. In both events, it is common to see the streets of the square, and surrounding areas, decorated with colorful floral carpets. 

Near the city, there is also an interesting town that is located within ruins. The town is known by the name of Tarmatambo, the same name of the ruins; This town is interesting for the traditional design of its houses made of rammed earth and adobe, and with gabled roofs; In this town, which is just fifteen minutes away by car from the city center, it is the scene in which important events are celebrated that recall the ancient rites of sun worship. 

It is recommended to visit the mentioned town, in addition, especially during October 31, date in which it is possible to observe the interesting rituals that the population has for their dead, whose crosses are carried, from the cemetery, to their old houses, so that they share (symbolically) the day with the family. 

How to get to Tarma?

In order to get to the city of Tarma, the visitor has to take a bus trip from the city of Lima. The distance that exists between both, merits the investment of a time of five hours on average, and there are several interprovincial transportation companies that reach the city.

What to visit in Tarma?

And the reasons you have for not missing out on Tarma are…

The Plaza de Armas of Tarma

this place is the center of tarmeña activity. From the square you can reach the main attractions within the city such as the cathedral or the Manuel A. Odría Museum. It is considered a historical place because it is the place where Tarma’s independence was proclaimed in 1820. The architecture of the square is between the colonial and the modern, which will make you feel in an environment lost between the ages, surrounded by its colorful nature under matchless sunset skies.

Santa Ana Cathedral (or Matriz Church)

It dates from the 50s, built where the Parish Church used to be. Its architecture recalls the baroque style of the great churches of the eighteenth century and its windows are decorated with stained glass windows of great beauty in which iconic biblical passages can be seen represented.

Sacsamarca countryside

If you wanted a pastoral country/outdoor/nature experience, come to me, because you will find it by going a little west of the city, in this splendid countryside full of flower crops and orchards of sweet fruit. You will not miss the smell of artificial perfumes when you pass through here, since the aroma of the carnations of the countryside will steal all your senses.

Sanctuary of the Lord of Muruhuay

This Sanctuary, 10 km. of the city, was built as a manifestation of faith in the Lord of Muruhuay. It is said that the image of a cross appeared on a rock on May 3, 1835 and that the image of a crucified Christ was painted on this cross. The cult of this miraculous image has spread throughout the territory of the province, and the festival of the Lord of Muruhuay is also celebrated in Tarma between the months of May and June. From the Sanctuary you can see the wide landscape of the Tarmeño valley. 

Huagapo Grotto

This place is a little further from the city than the previous ones, well, a little far, ok ok it’s far, to the north, about 33 km. of Tarma, in the district of Palcamayo. It is similar to the Cueva de las Lechuzas although it is considered one of the deepest caves in the world. If you go to Huagapo you will not need specialized equipment to feel like a speleologist (cave explorer).

San Pedro de Cajas

The city is famous all over the world for the art of weaving with natural landscapes and human movements (faces) made of wool, alpaca and plants. The tradition is transmitted from parents to children and there the validity of the art is transmitted. Artisans give visitors access to their workshops by showing them on the spot how to make yarn for export to world markets. The distance is 41 km from the city of Tarma.

Culture Museum

The first level features handicrafts and represents local culture and fairy tales. The second stage reveals the realities of the pre-Columbian era.


It is about 6 km from Tarma to the city center and it takes 15 minutes, but the parade is limited, so you have to be prepared. It has an altitude of 3,300 to 3,500 above sea level. Cross the Carretera Capac Ñan, which is under renovation, and you will find the museum if you have the opportunity to climb to the top. This ancient site has an approximately 21-acre fork between the main cashier era and the eucalyptus forest.

Huasahuasi District

Potato production center in the country with a beautiful lagoon rich in fish and mallards. 

Pampa Hermosa National Sanctuary 

The Pampa Hermosa sanctuary unites the provinces of Tarma and Chanchamayo in the Junín region. This nature reserve covers 11,543.74 hectares. Thus, this nature reserve was created in 2009 with the aim of preserving in this way an example of a tropical forest found in the middle of a forest, as well as some of the remaining forest products. It can ensure the protection of the diversity of wildlife in the area, the protection of the waters of the rivers that feed the local communities, and the stability of the land.

And the best time to get to know Tarma is…

During the months of March and April, in the middle of Holy Week. In these months the fields where the tarmeñas flowers are grown can be seen in their maximum splendor, covered in their entirety with the color and vitality of the floral diversity (nothing to envy to the Dutch tulip fields). The petals of these flowers are then used in the making of handmade rugs, used for the religious events of Holy Week (a visual luxury, not to be missed!). 

Whether you decided to travel for a weekend or to plan the next Easter vacation, in this Tarmian link you will find offers on tickets and new experiences (during Easter the best thing is that you can book in advance so as not to pay inflated prices).

Best Trekking and 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 Peru, 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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