1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Arequipa (department)

AREQUIPA, a coast department of southern Peru, bounded N. by the departments of Ayacucho and Cuzco, E. by Puno and Moquegua, S. and W. by Moquegua and the Pacific. It is divided into seven provinces. Area, 21,947 sq. m.; pop. (1896) 229,007. It is traversed by an important railway line from Mollendo (Islay) to Puno, on Lake Titicaca, 325 m. long, with extensions to Santa Rosa, Peru and La Paz, Bolivia. The highest point reached by this line is 14,660 ft. The department includes an arid, sand-covered region on the coast traversed by deep gorges formed by river courses, and a partly barren, mountainous region inland composed of the high Cordillera and its spurs toward the coast, between which are numerous highly fertile valleys watered by streams from the snow-clad peaks. These produce cotton, rice, sugar-cane, wheat, coffee, Indian corn, barley, potatoes and fruit. The mountainous region is rich in minerals, and there is a valuable deposit of borax near the capital, Arequipa.