Monasterio Santa Catalina

The Santa Catalina Monastery was built in the late 1500s (that’s the 16th century), and, at it’s height housed several hundred nuns. Today there are only about 20 nuns who live there, secluded from tourists, while the rest of the monastery is open to the public. According to my guide book The Rough Guide to Peru it is “the most important and prestigious religious building in Peru.” I’d modify that to say that it’s the most important and prestigious religious building in Peru for Catholics

Regardless, it’s a beautiful sight that should not be missed. The monastery was built in the Mudejar style, which came over from the Moors via Spain. Many of the alleys and streets inside are named after cities in Spain such as Cordoba, Sevilla, Toledo and more.

I’d love to know which of the GRAPES you see in this post and where you see examples of cultural diffusion! P4100266.JPG

In the Orange Tree cloister. I love that color blue that you can also see in the Casa del Moral. P4100253.JPGOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAP4100284.JPGAbove is more from the Orange Tree cloister — the frescos (the paintings above the blue wall) have survived for hundreds of years. P4100270 (1).JPG

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P4100271.JPGP4100269.JPGP4100280.JPGOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe flower pots hung on the walls, seen all over Arequipa, also reminded me of Spain.

P4100277.JPGAnother fresco that is several centuries old. A fresco, by the way, is a type of painted done rapidly on wet plaster. P4100265.JPG

P4100249.JPGP4100250.JPGFrescoes of St. Francis of Assisi and a dog, to symbolize his kindness to animals.

Where the nuns did their laundry before washing machines.

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