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Arequipa, the capital of department of Arequipa, is the most important city of southern Peru. It stands at the foot of the snow-capped volcano El Misti, in the sierra. Arequipa has many fine colonial-era Spanish buildings built of sillar, a pearly white volcanic rock used extensively in the construction of the city, from which it gets its nickname La Ciudad Blanca ("the white city"). The city is located at an altitude of 2,380 meters (7740 feet) above sea level, in the Peruvian Andes.
Archaeological findings indicate the fertile valley in which Arequipa is situated has been occupied back to 5000 – 6000 BC. In the 15th century, the region, then occupied by Aymara Indians, was conquered by the Incas and served as an important supplier of agrarian products to the Inca Empire. The modern city of Arequipa was founded on August 15, 1540, by Garci Manuel de Carbajal, an emissary of Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro. The city's name comes from the Quechua phrase "Arequipai" which means "Yes, stay".
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This city is also known as: Arequipa.