Travelers heading to Peru’s spectacular Colca Canyon will almost certainly spend some time in the town of Chivay, 100 miles (60 kilometers) outside of Arequipa. As the first main tourist town in the valley, Chivay has many hotels, hostels, restaurants and shops selling high-quality Alpaca wool handicrafts. At the center of the city sits Plaza de Armas, a charming little plaza housing Our Lady of Assumption church and a market at its corner selling a little bit of everything (including lots of cheap and tasty eats).
A few minutes outside of Arequipa, the Termas La Calera (La Calera Hot Springs) have a series of indoor and outdoor heated pools perfect for a soak after a day of sightseeing, as well as lockers and showers for post-soak refreshment.
Getting to the Colca Valley takes about 3.5 hours by public bus.