|Address:||From Aeropuerto Internacional Chacalluta in Arica, Chile, downtown Arica is about 14 miles (22 km). However, I was coming from Tacna (Peru’s southernmost city), and so I took a colectivo. The fare was 20 soles (about U.S. $6). Had I taken the bus, it would have cost me 12 soles (U.S. $4). The colectivo dropped me off at Arica’s international bus terminal. The entire trip took about 90 minutes. It could have been shorter if I didn’t have to go through both Peruvian and Chilean immigration and customs.|
I arrived in Arica at about 4 p.m. I went directly to La Paskana where I stayed for a couple of nights. This place is inexpensive and the service is great! The receptionist (sorry I forgot his name) was extremely helpful. If I come back to Arica, I definitely will stay here again. La Paskana’s location is not at the heart of the city, but it is walking distance to the center of Arica. Because Arica is safe, I didn’t worry about walking with my camera even as it was getting dark.
This was the northern end of 21 de Mayo, Arica’s main shopping street.
What you see below is Catedral de San Marcos de Arica; it looks like a toy, but it is real. It was constructed in 1875 by Peruvian President José Balta when Arica was still part of Perú. It is considered Monumento Nacional de Chile (i.e., one of Chile’s national monuments). The earthquake of April 2014 caused significant damage to the structure; the Cathedral was closed to the public from August 2015. It was opened only in the middle of January 2017.
Here’s another picture I took in Plaza Colón.
I had heard about Morro de Arica. And I knew it was walking distance from 21 de Mayo. Unfortunately, when I got to the gate which marks the beginning of the ascent to the summit, the gate was locked. So I walked around the area, hoping I could find another entrance. This was my view of the city.
The next day I came back. I had to come back. Fortunately, this time the gate was open. And I happily started the walk to the very top.