Cajamarca’s genial Plaza de Armas has a well-kept garden and a fine central fountain which dates from 1692 and commemorates the bicentenary of Columbus’ landing in the Americas. Come evening, the town’s inhabitants congregate in the plaza to stroll and mull over the important events of the day – a popular pastime in this area of northern Peru.

Two ornate churches face the plaza: the cathedral and the Iglesia de San Francisco. Both are often imaginatively illuminated in the evenings, especially on weekends.