The best general agencies in Arequipa arrange entry-level rafting and trekking itineraries. Almost all are located on just two streets in Arequipa, Jerusalén and Santa Catalina, so it's pretty simple to browse up and down and get a feel for an agency.
Apumayo Expediciones, Jirón Ricardo Palma, N-5 Santa Monica, Wanchaq, Cusco (tel. 084/246-018; www.apumayo.com), is excellent for adventure trips in the region, including long trekking/rafting expeditions to Cotahuasi and Colca, as is Amazonas Explorer, Zela 212, Cusco (tel. 054/252-846; www.amazonas-explorer.com), an international company that organizes hardy multisport trips to Cotahuasi and Colca (which can be combined with tours to Cusco, the Inca Trail, and Machu Picchu). Cusipata Viajes y Turismo, Jerusalén 408-A (tel. 054/203-966; www.cusipata.com), is the local specialist for Chili and Colca rafting and kayaking (including courses), and its guides, led by Gianmarco Vellutino, frequently subcontract out to other agencies in Arequipa. Ideal Tours, Urbanización San Isidro F-2, Vallecito (tel. 054/244-439), handles Chili and Majes rafting, as well as Colca and other standard tours.
Colca Trek, Santa Catalina 204 (tel. 054/202-461; www.colcatrek.com), offers canyon treks of 3 to 5 days or more and a number of other adventure activities, such as horseback riding, mountain biking, rafting, and climbing.
For hard-core mountain climbing and trekking, one agency stands out: Carlos Zárate Aventuras, Santa Catalina 204, no. 3 (tel. 054/202-461; www.zarateadventures.com), is run by Carlos Zárate, the top climbing guide in Arequipa (a title his dad held before him). He can arrange any area climb and has equipment rental and a 24-hour mountain-rescue service. Climbing expeditions (per person) start at: El Misti, $50; Chachani, $70; and Colca Canyon, $75. Mountain biking and rafting trips are also arranged.
For specialized birding programs (as well as other nature tours), Tanager Tours, La Estrella F-9, in the J. L. Bustamante y Rivero district (tel. 054/426-210; www.tanagertours.com), is the top choice in Arequipa.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.