What strikes first time visitors as special or unusual when they arrive in Arequipa, Peru?
The incredible landscape, featuring enormous volcanoes.
The white cathedral in the main Plaza de Armas.
The flavors of the famous dishes from Arequipa, most notably (in my opinion): Chupe de Camerones (Shrimp Chowder). It is delicious.
Arequipa is also the main hub for exploring Colca Canyon, which is one of the deepest canyons in the world and the premiere spot for viewing Condors.