Located high in the Andes mountains, Huaraz is blessed with the most attractive surroundings in Peru and is a “must see” for anyone interested in the great outdoors. Its proximity to the Cordilleras Blanca and Huayhuash make it one of the premiere climbing and trekking destinations in the world. Huaraz boasts a wide variety of international restaurants, hip coffee houses and lively nightclubs, making it the ideal location to begin acclimatizing.
• Altitude: 3090 meters above sea level
• Political creation as a province: July 25, 1857
• Surface area of the province: 2,492.91 km2
• Population: 147,463 residents
ACCESS ROUTES TO HUARAZ:
• Lima Pativilca Huaraz: 400 km.
• Lima Casma Huaraz: 519 km.
• Trujillo Chimbote Huallanca Huaraz: 367 km.
By air: The Anta Airport
Daily flights from Lima – Huaraz – Lima with small chartered flights. For flight information call 44-3095 / 44-3174 (Airport ).
Our dry season, which is called here “Andean summer”, lasts from May to October with sunny days, cold nights and infrequent rains, perfect for any kind of outdoor activities. The wet season lasts from November to April. There can be days of rain followed by 2 or 3 days of good weather. During the year, temperatures may fluctuate from 20ºC to 2ºC.
The monthly average goes from 15.5º to 13.5º C.
Besides the main stores in town, there is a public market where you will find a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, meats and all kinds of groceries. People are very helpful and friendly.
The local taxi fare is 3 – 4 soles within the city. For outlying destinations, prices vary from 5 to 10 soles, depending on the distance. There is van (combi) service which goes along the Callejón de Huaylas, with prices varing from 1 to 6 soles. For transfer service to any of the starting points for trekking, you can ask at your hotel or any travel agency. Be sure to pay only 50% in advance and the rest at your final destination.
Banking hours: Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM, with the exception of the Banco de Nación, which is open Mon.-Fri. from 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM and Saturdays from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
Many shops around the city offer good-quality local handicrafts with prices varying according to quality. Most of the stores are open from 9 AM to 1 PM and 3 PM to 8 PM. The public market is open all day. We recommend a visit to the Last-minute gifts store, which has a wide variety of local handmade articles, such as ceramics, silver jewelry, textiles, alpaca garments and gifts. You will also find good-quality, hand-printed T-shirts with mountain and ethnic designs of the Andean Expressions brand.
Recordings: Because Peru is a multi-ethinic country, it also has a diversity of musical expressions. A few recommendations are: Black Peruvian music – Susana Baca, Eva Ayllon, Zambo Cavero; Andean music – Manuelcha Prado, Raúl García Zarate; Jazz fusion – Hijos del Sol, Wayruro, Manuel Miranda, Miky Gonzale (Inka Terra).
Service charges are generally included in restaurant bills. Additional tips are not required, but we suggest a 10% tip, depending on quality of service.
CULTURAL EVENTS AND ADVENTURE ACTIVITIES:
Without having fixed schedules to provide you, we suggest that you check with the National Institute of Culture (INC) and the Centro Cultural de Huaraz for current and upcoming cultural events. Some bars and restaurants also offer shows with Andean music.
Mondays and Thursdays are special market days which attract a multitude of local people selling and buying typical products.
Festival del Andinismo – Cordillera Blanca 2016 – Cordillera Blanca, runs between the end of june through the first days of july. People will take part in various adventures including: mountain biking, paraglading, rafting, running, rock climbing and finishing with a blow out rock concert on the final day.
Jose Olaya: This typical street was one of the few to survive the 1970 earthquake and still has its classic architecture. Every Sunday there is an outdoor typical food festival, a good chance to try homemade food. It is easy to get here by walking or 3 soles taxi.
Señor de La Soledad Church has the most sacred and old images which were brought from Spain, including the image of Jesus Christ which is considered the patron saint of Huaraz. On May 2 you can also see dancers from all over the country.
Easter is of the most important religious celebration in Huaraz. There are processions throughout the week with the largest on Good Friday. It is a representation of the passion of Christ with carved wood images. It is an amazing celebration where almost everyone participates. For more information about out more about this celebration look for the documentary Los Soldados de Pilatos produced by Red Condor Films.
Arthquakes and Avalanches
This region has suffered several devastating disasters. In 1941, a flood originating from Lake Palcacocha in the Cojup Valley destroyed the northern half of the city of Huaraz, killing 5,000 people. Since then, the government has worked to control the water level in all lakes that pose a threat of bursting. In 1962, the town of Ranrahirca was completely washed away by an ice and rrock avalanche that fell from Huascarán ((4,000 died). The most tragic earthquake in the history of the Western Hemisphere occurred May 31, 1970. Measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, this earthquake destroyed most of the city of Huaraz and severely damaged other cities of the Callejón de Huaylas, the Conchucos and the coast of Ancash, causing a total of 70,000 deaths and 250,000 casualties. The earthquake dislodged an enormous block of ice from the north peak of Huascarán, producing a huge avalanche of mud and stones that completely buried the city of Yungay in a matter of minutes. An estimated 18,000 people perished and the only survivors were those who fled to the highest part of the local cemetery.