We made an overnight stop in the little fishing village of Huanchaco. Once famous for its totora boat fisherman – cigar shaped boats made from reeds. Most visitors now come for the surf and the nearby archeological sites. Given that it was bloody freezing, it was the latter that kept us entertained.
First we visited Chan Chan, built in AD 1300 the site was once the largest pre-Columbian city in the Americas. Built by the Chimu empire, the site once contained over 10,000 structures. Good for a couple of hours of wandering and admiring the intricate detailing which is perfectly preserved by the dry climate.
We then hopped in a van and drove across the desert to Huaca de la Luna. Almost a 1000 years older than Chan Chan and built by the Moche, the site is essentially a series of temples built on top of one another. It is due to this layering that the lower levels are so well preserved.
The only other notable thing about Huanchaco are the Peruvian hairless dogs. Quite possibly the ugliest damn creatures I’ve ever seen.