From the Iglesia de la Merced, head down Heladeros to the Plaza Regocijo and the Museo Histórico Regional (Heladeros, tel. 084/22-5211, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Tues.–Sun., entry with boleto turístico or US$4.50), which was once the home of one of colonial Peru’s most famous and eloquent writers, mestizo Inca Garcilaso de la Vega.
The museum provides a fine survey of Peru’s pre-Inca cultures, starting with preceramic arrowheads and continuing with artifacts from the Chavín, Moche, Chimú, Chancay, and Inca cultures. The holdings include a Nasca mummy and, on the second floor, colonial furniture and paintings from the Cusco School.
Across the Plaza Regocijo in the municipality is the Museo Municipal de Arte Contemporáneo (Plaza Regocijo, 9 a.m.–6 p.m. Mon.–Sat., entry with boleto turístico or US$4.50), which contains contemporary art of varying quality.
© Ross Wehner and Renée del Gaudio from Moon Peru, 3rd Edition