Chiclayo and around

Chiclayo, set up by Spanish priests in the 1560s as a rural Indian village, has long since outgrown other towns of the Lambayeque Department. It came to prominence after Zaña was abandoned in 1726. Sandwiched between the Pacific Ocean and the Andes, Lambayeque is one of Peru's principal agricultural regions, and its chief producer of rice and sugar cane. It is also the outlet for produce from the northern jungle, which comes by road over the comparatively low Porculla Pass. Chiclayo is the major commercial hub of the zone, but also boasts distinctive cuisine and musical tradition (Marinera, Tondero and Afro-Peruvian rhythms), a famous witchdoctors' market and an unparalleled archaeological and ethnographic heritage. The area is also growing in importance as a birdwatching destination. Chiclayo is dubbed 'The Capital of Friendship', and while that tag could equally apply to most of the north coast of Peru, there is an earthiness and vivacity about its citizens that definitely sets it apart.

Getting there

José Abelardo Quiñones González airport is 1 km from the town centre. There is no bus terminal; most buses stop outside their offices, many on or around Bolognesi, which is south of the centre. Confusingly many of the buses leaving for the surrounding area are to the north of the centre.

Getting around

Calle Balta is the main street but the markets and most of the hotels and restaurants are spread out over about five blocks from the Plaza de Armas. Mototaxis are cheap. The surrounding area is well served by public transport.

Tourist information

Centro de Información Turística
There are kiosks on the plaza and on Balta.
, for complaints and consumer protection.

This is edited copy from Footprint Handbooks. For comprehensive details (incl address, tel no, directions, opening times and prices) please refer to book or individual chapter PDF
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