About Cajamarca

It’s one of the most ancient cities of Peru and of the Inca Empire. The first inhabitants were Huacaloma, Layzon, Cumbe Mayo and Otuzco who settled in Cajamarca about 3.000 years ago. The city was witness of ferocious battles between the Incas and the conquerors during the Peru Conquest and besides that, Cajamarca was where Francisco Pizarro captured Atahualpa, the last inca who refused to subject himself to the Christian faith and culture. It’s known as the most Spanish city of Peru.

Travel tips for Cajamarca

-The minimum altitude is in Nanchoc at 400 meters and the maximum in Hualagayoc at 3590 meters.-The distance from Lima to Cajamarca is 540,6 mi (870 km).The mototaxis in Cajamarca will remind you the Asian cities; besides that, as in all Peruvian cities, you have “combis” (little buses) and taxis. At night we recommend you to take authorized taxis, which have the number plate painted on the car.There is no special danger in Cajamarca; nevertheless, depending on the area and the season, you must be prepared for strong rains.Some illnesses local face are measles, parasitism and tuberculosis.

Cajamarca weather

Best time to visit Cajamarca

The best period of time to visit Cajamarca is in June, July and August if you like nice and warm temperatures. If you prefer to travel for the carnival, February or March is the best moment.

Climate in Cajamarca

-Cajamarca has a semi-dry and temperate climate with a rainy season from October to April.-The maximum temperature is 70 °F (21 °C) and the minimum descends to 39 °F (4 °C).

Things to do in Cajamarca

If you have always dreamed of riding a llama, then Cajamarca is the city for you. You'll have the chance to enjoy the beautiful cathedral of Cajamarca or the Mirador Natural Santa Apolonia, among many other sites worth visiting. You won't be bored in February because of the Carnival of Cajamarca, which you should check out. The local custom during the carnival is to throw water and paint at those walking through the city.

Nightlife in Cajamarca

Café Bar el Cascanuez

Location: 548, Puga street
Price: continental breakfast at 12 soles
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
At this bar we recommend you to taste the desserts. The customers can be chic, but taste the apple pie, the chocolate cakes and the delicious coffee.

Peña Restaurante Disco-bar La Rumba

Location: 519, Apurimac street
Hours: only weekends from 9:00 p.m.
This place is located at the universities and schools street and it’s very frequented by the young men of Cajamarca.

Bunker Peña Disco Bar

Location: 1669, Av. Hoyos Rubio
Hours: from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. from Thursday to Saturday
It’s a place for having fun until early morning hours, with great music and drinks.

Where to eat in Cajamarca?

Don Paco

Location: 726, Jr. Amalia Puga
Price: 8-10 soles
Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
This restaurant is located in the center of the city, has good price and an asorted menu of Peruvian dishes, although they have pizzas, roasted over a wood fire and crunchy.

El Zarco

Location: 962, Jr. Tarapaca
Hours: 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
At this restaurant you will taste traditional Peruvian cooking and they are specialized in grill, fishes, shellfish and creole food.

The tourist places to see in Cajamarca are:

Catedral de Cajamarca o Iglesia Matriz Santa Catalina

Location: Jr. Cruz de Piedra (no number), Plaza de Armas
Hours: Monday to Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Price: free entrance
The Cajamarca Cathedral is one of the most noteworthy examples of the Baroque style in Peru, with a facade with beautiful columns, cornices and finely detailed alcoves. The stones of the front have a volcanic origin and the front has a plateresque style. In 1665 it was the Spanish church.

Iglesia San Francisco (previously San Antonio)

Location: on the South-East of the Plaza de Armas, between the streets Amalia Puga and Amazonas
Visiting hours: everyday from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and from 3:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m
Price: free entrance
The San Francisco Church was built in 1699. In 1952 catacombs were discovered beneath the altar, where the remains of members of the Franciscan order and members of the indigenous royalty lie. You can also visit the convent, the Museum of Religious Art and the Sanctuary of the Virgen Dolorosa, the patron saint of the city.

Conjunto Monumental Belén

Location: Jr. Belén, block 6
Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Price: adults 4.50 soles and students 2 soles
The Conjunto Monumental de Belen is an architectural blend from the 18th century; the church, former mens hospital (Medical Museum) and former womens hospital (Archeological and Ethnographic Museum).

Mirador del Cerro Santa Apolonia

Location: Jr. Dos de Mayo, two blocks from the Plaza de Armas
Hours: Monday-Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Price: 1 sol
The Saint Apolonia hill (el Cerro Santa Apolonia), formerly known in Quechua as Rumi Tiana, or seat of stone, is a strategic spot to view the city and the Cajamarca valley. On the boundary of the site youll find some remains of pre-Hispanic constructions like the Silla del Inca, or the Incas Chair, made of a block of stone that emerges from the mountain.

The things to do in Cajamarca

Hacienda Tres Molinos

Location: the highway direction to Santa Barbara town
Hours: from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Price: free entrance
It’s a mansion where you can see milk producer cows. There they make cheeses, butter and condensed milk.

Ventanillas de Otuzco

Location: it’s at 5mi (8 kms) to the north-east of Cajamarca city
Hours: from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Price: adults 3.5 soles and students 1.5 soles
The “ventanillas” are niches sculpted on the rock where remains of people were buried, as craniums; it’s believed they were first buried on the floor, because there are no complete skeletons.

Los baños del Inca (Incan baths)

Location: 4 miles (6 km) from Cajamarca
Hours: from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Price: sauna, 10 soles; temperate pool, 2 soles. Special baths, adapted, 6 soles.
You can relax in those thermal waters of volcanic origin. There are temperatures over 158 °F (70 °C). It’s an extraordinary landscape with a natural spa, just ideal to relax from a long day of trekkings!

Typical dishes in Cajamarca

Picante de papa con cuy frito (spicy potatoes with fried guinea pig)

This dish is made up of stewed guinea pig, cooked in a peanut sauce with spicy pepper served with potatoes.

Chicharrón con mote

The “chicharrón” consists of fried pig skin, and in Peru is cooked crunchy and very gold coloured. It’s served with husked wheat and boiled potatoes.

Sopa de chochoca con cecina

The plate’s name comes from the word “chuchoqa”, which means boiled and dried corn. Then they make a flour used on the soup. The most important ingredients are cow meat, smoked meat, celery, leek, potatoes and corn flour.


This dessert speciality is made of a sweet or savory corn dough stuffed with cinnamon and raisins, wrapped in corn husks and cooked on steam.

How to reach Cajamarca

Cajamarca by train

Nowadays there is no railway to Cajamarca.

Cajamarca by flight

The distance on a straight line from Lima to Cajamarca is 352 mi (567 km). The airport Aeropuerto Mayor General FAP Armando Revoredo Iglesias is located at 2 mi (3,5 km) from the city. The airport receives 6 daily flights. The main airlines that operate in the airport are Latam and LC Perú.

Cajamarca by bus

-The route Lima-Cajamarca is at a distance of 540 mi (870 kms) and the travel takes about 13 hours by bus.-The companies that cover the route are Excluciva, Tepsa, Linea, Civa y Turismo Días.-You can also go to Cajamarca by bus from Chiclayo, Chepén, Guadalupe, Huaura, Pacasmayo and Trujillo.-The price of the tickes from Lima is between 50 soles and 140 soles, depending on the service chosen.

Accomodations in Cajamarca

    Hostal San José

    Location: 358, Angamos
    Price: 47 soles and up
    The hostal San José is located at 7 minutes from the main square. The rooms have wi-fi, TV and private bathroom. There is breakfast as supplement

    Hostal Cruz de Piedra

    Location: 287, Jr. Cruz de Piedra
    Price: from 61 soles the double room
    It’s located at 300 meters of the Plaza de Armas, the rooms have a desk, private bathroom and toiletry articles are offered free. All the rooms have TV and free wi-fi.

Important dates in Cajamarca

Carnival of Cajamarca(February-March)Its one of the most well-known festivals in Peru, and the residents of Cajamarca participate in music and dance contests. They organize a parade and dance and sing through the streets. At night youll see the coronation of the queens of the festival, traditional dances, and its a great opportunity to try local drinks and dishes. They also organize patrols and troupes on the most traditional neighborhoods, mostly for young people.
Cruces de Porcón(Palm Sunday)In this religious festival, giant crosses made of reeds and palms are carried through the Porcon valley. The crosses are adorned with round and oval mirrors, which represent the souls of the dead. Palm Sunday is the main day during the festival and is not to be missed! On Palm Sunday the crosses are blessed, songs are sung in Latin and Quechua, and there is a procession to represent the triumphant arrival of Christ in Jerusalem. This day the children put on costumes of angels and they throw from the Señorca, a donkey charged with the transportation of the Christ image.
Festival de San Juan Bautista(June 24th)This religious celebration features handicraft fairs and social gatherings in honor of the patron saint, John the Baptist (San Juan Bautista).
Cajamarca FONGAL Fair(July 24th-31st)At this fair agricultural, agroindustrial and handicrafts are displayed and sold. You can also stop by marinera dance and Peruvian Step Horse competitions. The swiss cheese and the condensed milk are tasted also at this fair.
Señor de Huamantanga(September 23rd-25th)This is a regional fair with religious, cultural and athletic activities for anyone to participate in.

Bus Companies

Top Routes By Bus

Search Other Destinations