Reserva Nacional Salinas y Aguada Blanca

Arequipa & Canyon Country

The paved road from Arequipa climbs northeast past volcanoes El Misti and Chachani to this national reserve, which covers 367,000 hectares at an average elevation of 4300m. As most travelers speed through on the way to the canyons, this is where their heads may tingle at high altitude as they note the rocky and extraterrestrial landscape turn sparse of vegetation, and criss-crossed with darting vicuńas (threatened, wild relatives of alpacas). Get out here to trek on old Inca trails.

Only a handful of llama herders roam the national reserve, giving a chance for high-altitude loving tarucas envinados (Andean deer), guanacos and flamingos to thrive without human interference.