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Huanchaco, Peru

PERU | Thursday, 3 October 2013 | Views [397]

This is a brilliant little fishing town just north of Trujillo.  We ended up staying here for 6 days as it was so relaxing.  The local fishermen use boats that look like large surf boards made out of reeds to fish in the shallow water.  They catch some pretty big fish as well, as it's really easy to buy it from the local market.  We even managed to buy spices to make a curry one night, which we are missing enormously!  We are now carrying around with us a variety of spices that re making my bag quite fragrant! 

First night was in a slightly rubbish hostel, but then we came across Rubalong, an apartment overlooking the bay with amazing views.  It cost s.60/night - about 13.50 (pounds) for both of us! 

We ended up staying for longer as we had some surfing lessons.  I can now (or could when I left) catch a wave and stand up all by myself!!!  I am well chuffed and shall be heading up to Scarborough to practice with the girls from home when I get back - Clare/Charlie??  Damian can catch a wave with help (hehehe) and stand up.  Very satisfying to be better than him at something, as this is a rare occasion!

We also went Huacas del Luna (Pyramid), an amazing pre inca temple and city just near by.  This place was part of the Moche empire that was eventually taken over, pre Inka.  The Spanish looted it for gold in the 1600's and distroyed quite a lot, not as much as the Huncas Del Sol next door, which was bigger than the pyrimids in Egypt before they destroyed most of it.  Lookily they didn't find that much gold in the Sun Temple, so they only distroyed part of the smaller Luna Temple (it is still massive!).  The paintings on the wall are still easy to see and with each new King the Moche people added an entirely new outer layer (phase) to the temples, so there are 7 layers in total, with almost all of layers 1, 2 and 3 completely intact and protected by the outer layers.  Unfortunately you cannot see them, as they are still beneath the rest.  The Spanish did do a good job of ripping down one wall, so you can now see layers 4 and 5 behind the impressive murals of layer 6, but the final and richest temple was destroyed by weathering and the pre and post Spanish looters.  Really amazing temple.

We also went to the Chan Chan complex, which was the imperial city of the Chimu culture.  It first looks like a load of enormous mounds in the sand (it's really dry and dusty in the whole area) as you walk up to them from the highway, but when you go inside they are amazing pre inca palaces and temples.  This is the largest adobe (mud built) city in the World.  This is another 11 year seige by the Inka's and the last civilisation before Inka domination.   For each King here they built a new palace (they are not sure what they did with the old one).  When the King died, everyone who served him was burried as well, including much of the royal family.  They didn't have doors in the Palaces either, just layers of walls to protect access ways from the sun and wind.  The pattens on the walls are still really clear, with fish, fishing nets and birds clearly shown.  We could only go into a few of them though, as most are still under the sand and need excavating.  It would be good to come back in 20 years time, when they have done them all, as they found loads of amazing artifacts just in the few we went to.  The museums here are brilliant. 

After the relax we decided to catch an overnight bus to Lima and fly to Iquitos, the city in the middle of the Amazon Jungle.   



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