Chiclayo is the fourth biggest city in Peru and is known as the City of Friendship. It is a buzzing city full of interregional commerce, which can easily be seen in the main markets, where every imaginable kind of fruit is brought in from the North, the South, and the jungle area. Moreover, Chiclayo is famous for its so-called Witch Doctor’s Market. Until today, there is a strong belief among Peruvians that many illnesses can be healed using natural medicine, removing bad energies, or by getting in contact with the spirit world. This gives way for a lot of alternative medical treatments performed by local shamans (witch doctors) or women, who have accumulated knowledge of the curing effect of natural plants since ancient times.
WHAT YOU MAY ALSO SEE
Most visitors, however, stop by in Chiclayo in order to visit some of the mayor archeological findings in the area. The most impressive of all is probably the intact royal tombs of several local kings and shamans from the Moche Culture, found in the Sipan area, located about an hour’s drive from Chiclayo. In 2007, a very impressive museum (Tumbas Reales) was opened in the city of Lambayeque, showcasing all the funeral offerings including human and animal offerings, jewels and ornaments in gold, silver, copper, seashells and semiprecious stones, which have given us a whole new perspective on the way society worked. Another area, which is definitely worth visiting is the Archeological Complex of Tucume, containing the structures of more 26 pyramids. It was a religious center for more than 300 years and has remains from different cultures using the same place for religious and administration purposes. Even today, there are shamans coming to the area to perform ceremonies, because it is still thought of as a very energetic place.
Insider Tip: The shop located next to the museum offers a very nice variety of beautiful, locally made handicrafts at a very reasonable price. In this way, you get the chance to support the artisans of Tucume directly and take a unique piece of art with you back home.
The Lambayeque region in, moreover, a wonderful place to go for both professional and hobby birdwatchers. The Dry forest of Pomac offers more than 100 different species of birds and in the Ecological Reserve of Chaparri the are 39 endemic birds and works as a rescue center for animals in the region, giving the opportunity to get close up to animals such as the spectacled bear.
Recommend Restaurants in Chiclayo:
Sabores Peruanos ($$ – $$$): Peruvian – Av. Los Incas 136, La Victoria
Marakos 490 ($$ – $$$): Meat – Av. Grau on the corner with Calle Eten
Tostao ($$ – $$$) Sandwiches & Coffee: 250 Las Jacarandas, Urbanization Santa Victoria
Mapache Frío ($) Ice cream: Vicente de la vega 800 with Alfredo lapoint
Delicious rolls ($) Ice cream: Elias Aguirre 770 (Plaza de Armas)
Recommend Restaurants in Lambayeque:
El Cántero ($$ – $$$): Traditional Peruvian – 2 de Mayo 180
La Casa Descalzi ($$ – $$$): Traditional Peruvian – Calle 8 de Octubre
Mr. Paleta ($) Ice cream: Calle Jacarandas 100
Best time to visit:
Chiclayo is a city located in the middle of a dessert, which is why it virtually does not rain more than 20mm spread out over the year. The daytime temperatures are warm throughout the year with between than 23 ° C in winter and 32° C in summer, so the best time to visit really depends on how hot you like it. The water temperature peaks in February and March at 22° C.