Thursday, July 30, 2009


Of the 261 finalists and the top 77 finalists shown on July 05 2009; the panel of experts of New7Wonders chose the 28 official finalists 4 days after (marked with red) in which strangely to shock the world do not appear:

Mount Everest the highest of the world with 8.848 m and the Colca Canyon the deepest of the world, with 4.160m.

Saturday, June 27, 2009



In 1981 the first Polish expedition, based on topographic maps of low accuracy, considered that the Colca Canyon reached a depth of 3250m. This information was used for many years.

But in 2005, an expedition led by Polish researcher Andrew Pietowski performed several measurements using modern high-precision devices, including a "Global Positioning System” (GPS), obtaining accurate data on the height of this natural wonder.

And it was on the 24th of August, 2005, in the city of Arequipa, during a press conference, that they revealed that in the territory of Canco of the district of Huambo the profundity of the Colca Canyon reached 4160m on the north side and 3600 m on the south side.

The conquest of rio colca -

Deepest Part of the Colca Canyon - Canco 4160m.
From "The Conquest of Rio Colca, The Worlds Deepest Canyon" by Jerzy "Yurek" Majcherczyk

This makes the Colca Canyon the deepest Canyon of America and approximately more than twice as deep as the Grand Canyon.



Friday, June 26, 2009


1. Click On The Following Link
2. Put all your personal details and make your choices for the seven wonders of nature (INCLUDING THE COLCA CANYON).
3. Don’t forget to confirm your choice through the message that will be found in your unwanted mailbox or drafts.
4. Please support this campaign that is so important for the development of Arequipa and Peru.

Ranking ©


The Colca Canyon is an amazing geological formation created by erosion from the Colca River over thousands of years in which the abrasive affect of the water that flows through the mountains carved the rock and gradually turned into one of the deepest natural canyons on the planet.

The Colca Canyon is located in the north-eastern side of Arequipa, about 4 hours north of the city of Arequipa. This canyon reaches depths of 4160 meters and is more than 120 kilometers long.

In 2005 an expedition led by the Polish researcher Andrew Pietowski performed several measurements using modern high-precision devices, including a "Global Positioning System” (GPS), obtaining accurate data on the height of this natural wonder. And it was on the 24th of August, 2005, in the city of Arequipa, during a press conference, that they revealed that in the district of Huambo the profundity of the Colca Canyon reached 4160m on the north side and 3600 m on the south side. This makes the Colca Canyon the deepest Canyon in the world and approximately twice as deep as the Grand Canyon.

The conquest of rio colca -
Deepest Part of The Canyon - Canco at 4160m.
Photo from "The Conquest of Rio Colca, The Worlds Deepest Canyon" by Jerzy "Yurek" Majcherczyk.

Known popularly as "The Kingdom of the Condor" and designated as the "Valley of Marvels" by the Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa, this natural tourist attraction was recognized as one of the seven wonders of Peru, through a nationwide internet vote organized by the Peruvian newspaper “El Comercio” in 2008 and is currently applying to be chosen as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. The stunning scenery, history, biodiversity and culture that surrounds the valley of the Colca Canyon makes it a major tourist resort.

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The Colca River originates in the Andes, in the high Condorama Cruise and descends to the town of Chivay located at 3600m where the famous canyon starts. Passing through the old river town of Maca, the flow of the river increases dramatically and spills into the depth of the valley. It is here that the Colca Canyon actually starts, reaching a greater depth at the Cruz del Condor viewpoint. It then flows down about 40 km and converges with the river Andamayo, marking the end of the canyon and the beginning of the Majes valley before flowing into the Pacific Ocean it becomes the river Camana. Thus the river is given three different names as it passes through these different territories, Colca, in the hills; Majes in the middle, and Camana in the coastal desert.

This canyon is part of the Volcanic chain of the western Andes, where there are spectacular views of the combination of mountains and volcanoes, such as Hualca Hualca, Ampato and Sabancaya that is still active.

Ampato and Sabancaya

Volcan Ampato
Ampato and Sabancaya

The valley that goes by the same name as the canyon begins in the surroundings of Chivay, the main town of the area, continuing in a north-westerly direction for more than 60km to the area known as La Cruz del Condor in the town of Cabanaconde.

This valley is an area with a large diversity of flora and fauna and one of the most amazing cultural landscapes of America due to the presence of terraced fields. Throughout the valley you can see interesting landscapes and animals native to the area such as condors, llamas, alpacas, guanacos, vicunas and chinchillas.

Colca Canyon

Colca Canyon

It is said that in this region two ethnic groups have managed to live since ancient times: The Collaguas and Cabanas. They managed to dominate the nature of the region and its complex geography by developing terraced fields through an admirable farming system that are still in use and amaze everyone lucky enough to see them.

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Currently in this area, there are 16 villages who are descendants of the Collaguas and Cabanas, who have inherited a rich cultural tradition. These districts are: Sibayo, Callalli, Tuti, Canocota (Annex of Chivay), Chivay, Coporaque, Yanque, Ichupampa, Achoma, Lari, Maca, Madrigal, Cabanaconde, Pinchollo (Annex of Cabanaconde), Tapay and Huambo.

8.000 hectares of pre-Inca irrigated terraced fields built more than 1.400 years ago and thanks to the fertility of the land in this region remain to this day allowing for the sowing and harvesting of many varied products such as potatoes, 32 varieties of corn, 12 varieties of beans and 54 of quinua.

Colca Valley
Terraced Fields

In the villages of the Colca Valley you can see some of the most beautiful and ancient churches in the country, adorned with murals and valuable paintings from the colonial era. Some churches were built on the arrival of the Spanish and have Renaissance style influence of the era. Others however are characterized by the Baroque style between the years 1640 and 1700. The most astonishing churches of the the Colca Valley are in Lari, Yanque, Cabanaconde and Sibayo. Many of the houses in the valley are still built of stone with thatched roofs of “ichu” which is a type of straw that grows in the hills of the canyon. Women in communities usually wear traditional dress: long skirts and jackets with colorful embroidery and hats with ribbons.


Inhabitants of the Colca Valley

The Colca Canyon is synonymous with biodiversity, with a flora composed of about 300 species used for medicinal reasons, as fuel, in dyeing, and nutritious grasses for domesticated and wild animals. Wildlife is just as varied as the flora, including 32 species of mammals, 5 of carnivores like the puma, more than 130 species of birds, reptiles and rodents, but some of these species are in danger of becoming extinct according to the ministry of agriculture, and conservation projects and activities are urgently needed.


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The weather in the Colca Valley is typical of the high Andean zones, dry and mild, with temperatures generally cold, especially in winter time from June to September where they drop below zero at night and during the day it is sunny with temperatures of between 15-20 ° C. During the rainy season, from late November until March, there are no sudden changes in temperature which ranges between 5 ° and 10 ° C.

The Colca area is exceptionally good for adventure sports such as trekking, rafting, climbing, mountain biking, camping, and hiking, among others. To go down to the river and canyon, there are some trails favourable for walking that are connected to some of the small villages that exist along the canyon like Tapay, Cosñirhua, Malata.


A trip or tour to the Colca Canyon is extremely interesting, with a minimum recommended time to visit of 2 or 3 days. Visiting is recommended not only because of the beautiful landscape but also because it presents evidence of the dominance of ancient Peruvians agriculture, beautiful snow-capped mountains, inactive volcanoes, impressive terraces of pre-Inca origin and an imposing canyon of dangerous beauty worthy of the title of World's Natural Wonder.

The conquest of rio colca -
Photo from "The Conquest of Rio Colca, The Worlds Deepest Canyon" by Jerzy "Yurek" Majcherczyk.


Article published in "Atlas Departmental del Peru: Arequipa - Moquegua, 2003" by La República.

Chronicles say that two very different ethnic groups have inhabited the region since time immemorial. They arrived there from distant places and displaced the first settlers thanks to their military power and their skills in the use of tools and farming techniques.


The “Collaguas" stated that they were children of the volcano “Collaguata” and that they came from the bowels of the earth. The legend says that "they all came out with their weapons, costumes and headdresses, and went down the slopes of the mountain conquering the region." A characteristic feature was the singular form of their heads, which were deformed as newborns to imitate the figure of the volcanic cone which they consider as a guardian “apu”.

It is said that the second group, called the “Cabana”, came from the depths of the mount Hualca Hualca. They also deformed the skulls of their infants, but in a manner contrary to their neighbours, they adopted a flattened shape similar to the outline of their "pacarina" or birth mountain.


An additional difference between the groups of the region was the language. The Collaguas spoke Aymara and the Cabanas spoke Quechua, slightly different from the one spoken in Cuzco.

Despite the presence of the Colca River that crossed their settlements, the ancient inhabitants of the Colca valley were denied the possibility of using these waters to irrigate their fields, the reason was that the river flowed at the bottom of a deep canyon, thousands of meters below land. Their water, which was essential to life and sustenance of their villages, originated in the snows of the mountain, so they decided to put together their ingenuity so they could run this essential liquid through extensive canals and aqueducts, and transport it to their crops.

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They learned that they should use many different ecological or altitudinal levels, achieving a diversity of crops and food surpluses that enabled them to establish themselves as the absolute masters of the region.

However, the complex geography of their territory was for the ancient men of the Colca Valley a source of challenge. This encouraged the development of a special system of farms in platforms which still continues to surprise anyone who is lucky enough to see them.


Translated by: Isabella Anne Farrell Abarca


Article published in "Atlas Departmental del Peru: Arequipa - Moquegua, 2003" by “La Republican”.

Amazon River

Since 1542, when Captain Francisco de Orellana began his journey that led him to follow the Amazon across the current territories of Peru and Brazil, countless epeditions tried to understand the origins of this lush and mysterious river. Numerous attempts have resulted in discarding the tributaries of the Marañón as the furthest tributaries because the giant Ucayali largely exceeds its length.

Subsequent studies give a closer approximation: The emerging streams of the Apurímac were the most distant tributaries of the Amazon. Only the exact location needs to be established.

It was not until the twentieth century that this mystery would be solved. In 1971, a group of scientists sponsored by the National Geographic and led by Loren McIntyre stated that the headwaters of the Amazon were two small lakes which originated from the meltwaters of mount Mismi, located in the province of Caylloma.
iniciio del rio amazonas mismi
Headwaters of the Amazonas

Mount Mismi

Mount Mismi

Years later, in 1996, an international team formed by Zaniel Novoa, Jaececk Palkiewicz, Faura Guillermo Raul Rojas, Juan Luis Tord, Renzo Grego, Sergei Ushnursev and Rima Chajrutdinova indicated that the magnificent rivers source starts in Apacheta stream, located at Mount Quehuisha about 5170m above sea level.

The climbers stated that they discovered a new source that extended the river about 740 kilometers, thereby making the Amazon 7 020km long, not only is it biggest river, but also the longest river on the planet. The discovery was not recognized officially that year.

The discrepancies were not resolved, in December 2000, a team from the National Geographic Society under the command of Andrew Pietowski Mathematics, using the work of Mclntyre, confirmed the exact point where the Amazon, the biggest river in the world, is born. According to this expedition, the origin of the river is 5597 meters above sea level in a stream on mount Mismi in the Andes of southern Peru. This time, the explorers used satellite navigation equipment allowing them to make accurate maps of the studied area.

While researchers say the issue is not closed and there may be disagreement over the origin of the planet's largest river, the issue that has never been denied is that the origin of the Amazon river is Arequipa.

amazon river
Amazon river

Translated by: Isabella Anne Farrell Abarca


Article published in "Atlas Departmental del Peru: Arequipa - Moquegua, 2003" by La República.

In the middle of the desolated Andean “puna” grasslands, some curious green forms have caught the attention of many travellers, they are known as “yareta”, an almost miraculous plant that has managed to colonize an environment where other plants die.

This plant belongs to the umbellifer family, the yareta (Azorella yareta) is a species so adapted to life in stunning conditions that any other plant would perish.

Its habitat is the cold “punas” of the high Andes of southern Peru usually above 3800 meters, where the wind blows unceasingly and the cold cracks even granite. “Yareta” grows on rocks and follows the contours from where it began to grow, which is the reason why it has a singular and round form. This is a response to its need to resist the powerful high altitude wind, which would tear up the roots of any plant.
Living so close to the sky involves exposure to intense solar radiation; therefore, the yareta has covered its tiny leaves with a substance similar to wax, which prevents moisture loss through evaporation. Apart from its colourful appearance, it has developed a truly special way to survive: it must grow at an incredibly slow pace, almost geological, of a millimetre per year.


Despite what might seem to be the inaccessibility of the areas where “yareta” grows, this has not prevented it from being a victim of the devastation caused by man. It’s used as fuel in the mountains was so intense, that large areas of “yareta” are missing. During the nineteenth century, this plant was also used for industrial fuel, such as the Arica-La Paz railway that employed yareta as its basic component.
Fortunately today “yareta” is protected in natural reserves such as “Salinas” and “Aguada Blanca”, even though its indiscriminate use in cities such as Arequipa and Puno impede its absolute recovery.

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Translated by: Isabella Anne Farrell Abarca