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close to lima - yauyos

Southeast of Lima, some kilometers before getting to Lunahuana, the traveler reaches the boundaries of the rough and craggy province of Yauyos, a location that shows proudly a variety of unspoiled landscapes that man has not dared to change.

Yauyos has bottomless river basins with steep slopes, and valleys cut by deep ravines, narrow gorges and plains.

It features a variety of ecosystems with elevations that range from 1,539 to 4,800 masl in the towns of Omas and Tanta, respectively, and comprising the altitudinal floors of Yunga Quechua, Suni, Puna and Janca. The majority of towns are located in the Quechua zone (between 2,300 and 3,500 masl).

Yauyos is bordered to the north by the province of Huarochiri and the Junin region; to the south by the Ica region; to the east by the Huancavelica and Junin regions, and to the west by the provinces of Huarochiri and Cañete, both located in the Lima region.

Its richness lies in its landscape; hence, it is part of the Nor-Yauyos Cochas Landscape Reserve, together with an important area of the province of Jauja, in the Junin region.

There are several beautiful lagoons in Yauyos, with spring-fed pools that serve as a source of water for farming, livestock, and human consumption.

Furthermore, it is home to important archaeological sites. The weather is generally dry and mild; rains fall between December and March. Temperatures drop considerably during the night and warm clothes are recommended; nonetheless, it is possible to enjoy the cool lakes on sunny days.

The best time for visiting Yauyos is between May and October. It is located at 2,265 masl.

Sports: There are many adventure sports to be enjoyed in Yauyos such as paragliding, parasailing, rock climbing, rafting, kayaking, or mountain biking, among others. For the lovers of sports fishing there is Wayo lagoon, where exquisite trout can be caught, and for mountain climbers, the Raura mountain range stands impressive at 5,700 masl.

Climate: Yauyos offers travelers a mild climate: warm during the day and cold at night. The temperature ranges from 28 ºC to 16 ºC. The rainy season starts in January and lasts until March.

Rainfall records are very varied. Catahuasi receives 29 mm of rain while Yauricocha receives 941,1 mm. The rainy season lasts from December to April, causing damage to roads frequentlyDespite the difficulties, farming is the area’s main source of income.

Laraos, Catania, Miraflores and Vitis are areas of extensive agricultural activity along with livestock grazing to a lesser extent. Most of the land belonging to the communities of Tanta, Vilca and Huancaya is located at 3,600 masl and is mainly used for extensive livestock farming.

There are no hotels; however, most towns offer lodging in inns, guesthouses and hostels  belonging to families, communities and municipalities. Likewise, there are meadows (“praderos”) where adventurous travelers can set up camping tents.
In the areas of mayor influx of tourists, food is provided upon the traveler’s request. Eateries and small restaurants ran by families are also available near bus stations.

Among the typical dishes are: cheese with potatoes, lahuachupe (typical chowder) barley patasca (traditional soup), trout chilcano (soup), fried trout, pachamanca (dish of meat and vegetables buried under the ground and cooked over hot stones), alpaca steak, churpucuy (fried guinea pig with corn and broad beans) and pushto (toasted broad beans).

The area is wonderful for adventure sports
The rivers and spring-fed pools of the area are perfect for fishing. Hunters will be able to spot viscachas (rodents) and partridges, as well as deer near the side of the main snowcapped mountains. 

Trekking and mountaineering are great options as well. The traveler will be able to watch caravans of students climbing walls along the Andes landscape and hiking the length of the Cañete river basin, specifically in Vitis, Huancaya, Vilca and Tanta.