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Photos of Santa Catalina Monastery in Arequipa, Peru

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The monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru is a fascinating place. Construction of the monastery began in the 1500's. The inside of the monastery remained a mystery to the outside world until 1970 when the nuns opened it for public visitation.

The monastery is really a nunnery. The second daughter of wealthy families were 'given' to the nunnery to be raised as nuns. Within the monastery the nuns were kept in nearly total isolation from the public. This was possible because the monastery is a virtual self-contained village built within a tall surrounding castle-like wall. A limited amount of verbal and visual contact with the outside world was possible through pairs of wooden-lathed windows built into the inner and outer portion of the walls, which were almost two feet thick. The nuns, however, did not sacrifice a good life. Each was assigned a number of servants and their living quarters were plush by the standards of the era.

The monastery covers approximately 20,460 square meters in the central part of Arequipa. The architecture of Santa Catalina is beautiful. The winding streets within the monastery are lined with beautifully colored walls of the buildings used by the nuns for all things necessary in their day-to-day life. There are also three 'cloisters' or courtyards within the monastery, each lined with beautifully designed and decorated columns. Of all the religious relics and cathedrals throughout South America, this is one that should definitely be seen. Larger versions of these photos of the Santa Catalina Monastery in Arequipa, Peru can be seen using a mouse rollover and also in a Slideshow below. See all TheWorldinLight has to offer at Destinations and Topics.


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photo taken near the confessionals in the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #168
Next to the confessionals in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a street in the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #184
One of the streets in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of buildings and walls in the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #196
A street scene in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of red walls in the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #199
This is a photo of Calle Bargos near the rose garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of blue walls and arches near a courtyard in the Monastery of Santa Catalina 



in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #207
Beautiful arches in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a street in the Santa Catalina Monastery in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #227
A view up a street in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #221
This is Calle Bargos near the rose garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo taken near the gardens in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #216
This photo shows a sitting area near the rose garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a courtyard surrounded by blue walls in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #183
This is one of three cloisters in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

blue walls in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina of Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #180
A large earthenware oven in the cooking area of one of the homes in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of arched ceilings in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #206
A view looking down the row of columns lining a cloister in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of arched ceilings near a courtyard in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #172
This is a view looking down a row of columns in another cloister in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a street in the Monastery of Santa Catalina
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #188
A street scene in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a street lined with red walls in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #232
This is Calle Seville in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a scene in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #174
The entrance to one of the living areas in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the red walls within the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #195
A street scene in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a cafe within the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #204
This is the cafe garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a flower-lined street in the Monastery of Santa Catalina
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #208
A flower-lined steet in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the entrance to the Monastery of Santa Catalina in Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1123
A street scene in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of red walls in the Santa Catalina Monastery of Arequipa, Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1138
This is the cafe garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a lovely street in the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1140
A flower-lined steet in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of arched doorways in the Monastery of Santa Catalina
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1142
A street scene in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the Santa Catalina Monastery
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1147
This is the cafe garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the Monasterio de Santa Catalina
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1158
A flower-lined steet in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of a courtyard in a monastery in Peru
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1162
A street scene in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the confessionals in the Monastery of Santa Catalina
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1173
This is the cafe garden in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

photo of the entrance of the Monasterio de Santa Catalina
Monasterio de Santa Catalina #1183
A flower-lined steet in the Monasterio de Santa Catalina.

Any Home Advisor architect would admire the monastery's architecture. Many homeowners would love to have a cafe garden like the one pictured above. The building professionals at Home Advisor can help plan unique and functional outdoor spaces for any home.

Pisac Peru Photos

Winay Wayna Incan Ruin Photos



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All photographs are the property of Robert Stephens and TheWorldinLight Photographic Gallery. Unauthorized reproduction or use is prohibited by US copyright law.