Caraz is a town in the Caraz District
Caraz District
The Caraz District is one of 10 districts of the Huaylas Province in the Ancash Region of Peru. The capital of the district is the city of Caraz. It is located at 2235 msnm. In Caraz the paved road that comes from Pativilca ends....

 in the southeastern part of Huaylas Province
Huaylas Province
-Political division:Huaylas is divided into ten districts, which are:-External links:...

 of the Ancash Region
Ancash Region
Ancash is a region in northern Peru. It is bordered by the La Libertad region on the north, the Huánuco and Pasco regions on the east, the Lima region on the south, and the Pacific Ocean on the west. Its capital is the city of Huaraz, and its largest city and port is Chimbote...

 in Peru
Peru , officially the Republic of Peru , is a country in western South America. It is bordered on the north by Ecuador and Colombia, on the east by Brazil, on the southeast by Bolivia, on the south by Chile, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean....


Political Creation

Recent investigations propose that it's political creation was dated on 12 February 1821, when Grl. San Martín, while staying in Huaura (village north from Lima) founded 4 Departments, including Huaylas as one of them, with its capital, the city of Caraz. Later on 1857, it was split in two, giving birth to the new young Province of Huaraz. The District of Caraz was created by the Administration of Liberation of Don Simón Bolivar, legitimized by law on December 29, 1857, and sanctioned a year later. The city of Caraz became the capital of the Province of Huaylas on July 25, 1857. .


The origin of the name Caraz is uncertain, the following are possibilities.
One possibility is that it derives from the quechua
Quechua languages
Quechua is a Native South American language family and dialect cluster spoken primarily in the Andes of South America, derived from an original common ancestor language, Proto-Quechua. It is the most widely spoken language family of the indigenous peoples of the Americas, with a total of probably...

 word KGARA-PUNCU, meaning "leather door", as the doors in Caraz were once covered with leather.
Don Celso V. Torres maintains that the name comes from the quechua word KALLASH meaning sterile and without vegetation.
Another possibility is that it comes from the quechua word KJARAS, referring to the magüey plants found in the area.


The town is located at an elevation of about 2250 m in the Cordillera Blanca
Cordillera Blanca
The Cordillera Blanca is a mountain range in the Ancash Region of Peru. Part of the larger Andes range, it includes 33 major peaks over high in an area wide and long.-Overview:...

 mountain range. It keeps the traditional architecture and life style of an Andean village, as the remaining cities in the valley where destroyed after the 1970 earthquake.


Caraz it's 460 km NE from Lima (Peru's capital) via the Panamerican Highway (Route 1N) until km 202, then turn to the East via Route 3N through Huaraz.
From Chimbote via the Canyon del Pato (184 km), the first 64 km until Chiquicara are paved, then a dirt road, and finally the last 22 km before Caraz again paved.
Ther are daily flights from Lima Jorge Chavez International, via LC Busre, flying with Fairchild 19-seat Metroliner III, the Anta airport (ATA) it's about 45 km S from Caraz.

Tourist attractions

Caraz is a popular destination for trekking and day walks into the Huascaran National Park, also offers a much quiter and safer option when compared with Huaraz, in addition the weather (due to the altitude) is gently and provides a comfortable stay.

Paron lake, the largest lake on the Cordillera Blanca, 32 km East from the city, at 4200m, surrounded by 15 snow peaks, it's by far a must to see.

Canyon del Pato, a rock formation, resulting from the approach of Cordilleras Blanca and Negra, 22 km north from the city.

Puya Raimondii, the largest flower in the world, it grows at 4200m at Huashta Punta pass, on the Cordillera Negra, 45 km West from the city.

Tumshukayko is a pre-Inca archeological site near Caraz, Huaylas Province, Ancash Region, Peru.It is recently discovered and still under research....

, a pre inca remain dating about 3000 years old. Fine stone work on what it seems to be a place for worship, 1 km north from the Plaza de Armas.

Santa Cruz valley, 28 km NE from the city, it's the famous 4-day trek Santa Cruz - Llanganuco, that leads to visit the not less famous mounts Alpamayo 5947m (World's Most Beautiful Mountain) and Artesonraju 6025m (Paramount's live logo).

Huascaran National Park, a 340,000H, with access from Quebrada Paron, Quebrada Santa Cruz and Quebrada Los Cedros.
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