The Colca Canyon and the Valley of Volcanoes, located in the Arequipa region, will be nominated to become UNESCO Geoparks due to their geological significance and the ecological, cultural and ethnographical sites it houses.
If the nomination is accepted, the place would be considered to be the first geopark of Peru.
The President of the National Institute of Geology, Mining and Metallurgy (Ingemmet), Susana Vilca, has traveled to Arequipa to launch an awareness campaign designed to meet the objective set by regional and local authorities and the population in general.
According to the official, Colca Canyon and Valley of the Volcanoes are important geological heritage sites, because the area includes tectonic faults, canyons, lagoons and rock formations, which in addition to the cultural features -dating from the pre-Inca, Inca and Colonial times- make possible the establishment of a geopark.
The nomination process will take a two-year time during which geological, cultural, social files will have to be submitted to UNESCO.
It is believed that nearby populations will be favored due to eventual rise in tourism rates if Colca Canyon and Valley of the Volcanoes earn the Geopark designation.
The Colca Canyon is located in the Caylloma province, which besides its natural landscape features, among others, pre-Incan archaeological sites and colonial architecture.
The Valley of the Volcanoes is located in the Castilla province, where 85 volcanoes -in different colors and sizes- can be observed .
Caylloma province Mayor Romulo Tinta expressed his willingness to support the said nominations with various activities such as conferences, workshops, forums, among other awareness actions.