As a result of its history, the architecture of the city of Ayacucho is unique, comprising a mixture of local elements and elements of the different cultures that have inhabited the area, with a marked Hispanic character, in particular its churches and mansions.


The colonial churches of Ayacucho combine Hispanic, Latin and Arab elements, together with multiple indigenous features, such as the stones sculpted with representations of local natural elements. The following churches are noteworthy, amongst others:

  • Cathedral Basilica. Located in Ayacucho’s main square, or Plaza Mayor, construction of the cathedral began in 1612 and lasted forty years. It is dedicated to Our Lady of the Snows. The Cathedral’s most remarkable feature is the decoration with Baroque-Churrigueresque gold leaf altarpieces and the paintings representative of different schools of the colonial period.
  • Church of Santo Domingo. The Church is an exquisite example of the city’s ecclesiastical artistic heritage, despite the false legend claiming that the Church’s bell tower was used to punish heretics during the time of the Inquisition. It was built in the middle of the 16th century in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary with stones from the ancient Inca fortress of «Pukaray».
  • Church and Convent of San Francisco de Asis. This church is unique in so far as it is the only one in the city that recreates the Greco-Roman style of the Spanish peninsula in the Andes. Also built in the 16th century, it boasts the largest bell of the city and conserves a noteworthy collection of paintings of the Cuzco and Ayacucho schools, as well as a library.

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