El Complejo de Belén
Museo de Arqueológico & Etnografía
This small, sparsely filled museum housed inside the Antigua Hospital de Mujeres, just a few meters from El Complejo de Belén, has...
Hogar de Cristo
Hogar de Cristo is a charity that is always looking for volunteers to help with its various programs for street children.
El Cuarto del Rescate
The Ransom Chamber is the only Inca building still standing in Cajamarca. Although it’s called the Ransom Chamber, the room shown to...
A cavernous hotspot full of tattered retro furniture and multiple rooms for hiding out with your pisco sours. There’s live music on...
It only takes a step into this low-key dining room to be seduced by the smell of roast chicken and choice cuts of meat. A table for five...
El Complejo de Belén information
Construction of this sprawling colonial complex, church and hospital of Belén, made entirely from volcanic rock, occurred between 1627 and 1774. The hospital was run by nuns and 31 tiny, cell-like bedrooms line the walls of the T-shaped building. The facade here has a fascinating statue of a woman with four breasts – it was carved by local artisans and supposedly represents an affliction (supernumerary nipples, that is) commonly found in one of the nearby towns.
The baroque church next door is one of Cajamarca’s finest and has a prominent cupola and a well-carved pulpit. Among several interesting wood carvings, one extremely tired-looking Christ sits cross-legged on his throne, propping up his chin with a double-jointed wrist and looking as though he could do with a pisco sour after a hard day’s miracle working. Look out for the oversized cherubs supporting the elaborate centerpiece, which represents the weight of heaven. The outside walls of the church are lavishly decorated. The tourist office is housed in one of the interior complex rooms.