Chiclayo is in northern coastal Peru.
Chiclayo is one of the liveliest Cities in northern Peru with a population of around 970,000. Perhaps the better Lima being big enough to have supermarkets and still small enough to be manageable without hours spend in city busses. The plazas like Parque Principal or Plazuela Elias Aguirre buzz with life even after sunset.
LAN Peru and Avianca operate flights from Lima (LIM) to Chiclayo (CIX). A taxi should cost PES/2 for the 1km journey into the city centre.
All the major bus lines are present in Chiclayo but most have their own terminal spread out over the city.
Linea is on Av. Bolognesi 638.
One block west of Linea is the terminal for most north- or eastbound buses.
Movil is around the corner opposite the Metro supermarket (LP says Av. Bolognesi 199, but I think it is Av. Jose Balta)
From Ecuador, Super Semeria and CIVA run a night bus from Guayaquil through Cuenca and along the coast until Chiclayo, arriving at its destination around noon. Expect between 1.5 to 2.5 hours to cross the border due to the number of other buses using this same border checkpoint. Journey time from Cuenca is approx 14 hours (as of Oct 2015).
Check AndesTransit for current information on Chiclayo bus services to national and international destinations.
Chiclayo is full of Tico taxis. Short journeys cost PES/3. A station would be better if less easy to find to go to Sipan, Ferreñafe, Lambayeque or the beaches PES/15, or Tucume PES/20. Moto taxis cost half the price, are better ventilated, but give less protection.
- Pomac forest on horseback, Rancho Santana, . Worlds largest dry forest with his piramids of Lord of Sican, can be visited on horseback. Tipical Peruvian Pasohorses make even the most inexperienced rider feel comfortable. A beautiful way to visit te temples of Lambayeque-Culture. It is possible to stay at the ranch over night edit
- Museo Tumbas Reales de Sipan - The museum is situated in the center of Lambayeque and definitely worth a visit although descriptions are in Spanish mostly. It features most of the treasures of the Sipan tombs together with thorough explanation what the grave looked like and how it was discovered in 1989.
- Entrance fee is 10 S/. Student discount only for national students. Open Tuesday to Sunday 9am - 5pm. No cameras or cell phones allowed inside.
- Collectivos (aka Combis)run frequently (20 minutes, 1.50 S/.). On the corner of Vicente de la Vega and Leonardo Ortiz, in front of the Otursa bus terminal in Chiclayo, there is a collectivo station.
- Túcume - the final capital of the Sicán culture, is 35 kilometers along the old Panamericana from Chiclayo. Archaeologists believe that Túcume was built after the Sicán burnt and abandoned their former capital of Batán Grande around A.D. 1050. The area is commonly referred to as the Valle de las Pirámides, which is easy to understand from the lookout on Cerro Purgatorio, which offers a view over the entire complex. There is a small. uninteresting site museum (9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. daily). 8 Soles Entrance to both. note: you can enter the pyramids without going through the museum entrance, ask a taxi-driver - but the entrance fee supports the museum and site maintenance costs. There were 3 buildings of artifacts, site models, and movies that helped get a picture of how Lambeyeque culture functioned and what the pyramids signified to them. It's possible to scramble to the top of the Mt. Raya, considered sacred in ancient and modern times, and over to the village on the other side. Good 360 degree views at the top but be prepared for heat/sunburn/climbing with some 5-10 meter drops on either side.
- To get local transport to Túcume (1.50 PEN), you have to get to Lambayeque first by taking a combi at Vicente de la Vega and Leonardo Ortiz, in front of the Otursa bus terminal in Chiclayo. Frequent combis run to Túcume from in front of Lambayeque’s market, 2.5 blocks from Museo Tumbas Reales. From the town of Túcume, it is a 15-minute walk or a 2 PEN mototaxi ride. You can also get a combinado from the north side of Mercado Modelo - ask a vendor outside Mercado Modelo and they should be able to point you to the corner.
- Lord of Sipan tomb - The discovery of the Lord of Sipan considered the "King Tutankamon of the Americas", is one of the most spectacular tombs discovered in the western hemisphere. Sipan's treasures show the Moche culture's ability with several metals: gold, silver and copper and precious stones in fine quality and a mastery in metallurgy unrivalled in the Americas, centuries before the Incas.
- Museo Sicán - (Av. Batán Grande, block 9, tel. 074/28-6469, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Tues.–Sun., US$5.50) is 18 kilometers outside of Chiclayo in Ferreñafe. Though unfairly overshadowed by the Museo Tumbas Reales, this modern museum has a fabulous collection of gold objects of the Sicán culture, which succeeded the Moche in A.D. 850 and succumbed to the Chimú in 1375.
- Colectivos to Ferreñafe can be taken from the Terminal de Epsel at the corner of Avenida Oriente and Nicolás de Pierola in Chiclayo.
- Zaña - Zaña was a colonial town once destined to be a political center of Peru before being ransacked by pirates and destroyed by flooding. Abandoned along with its enslaved residents, Zaña is now a tiny middle of nowhere town an hour outside of Chiclayo with an Afroperuano museum (7 soles) and a beautiful ruined church (7 soles). Combis for Zaña leave frequently from Terminal Epsel and cost 4 soles.
- Mercado Modelo - The Mercado is located just 5 blocks from the Parque Principal (Plaza de Armas), and is open daily from sun-up to sun-down. Here you will find appliances and clothing as well as many natural medicines and herbal remedies. Plenty of fresh fruits and vegetable stands around, sopas, almuerzos and ceviche.
- Mercado de Brujos (Witch Market) - (Arica, inside the Mercado Modelo, 7 a.m.–5 p.m. daily). Deep in the market quarters is one row of shops called the witch market (probably second row of shops coming from around Arica #950). Here you will find piles of all the materials used by Peru’s curanderos—shark jaws, deer legs, snakeskins, potions, scents, amulets, and huayruro (jungle beads for warding off a hex). There are heaps of dried mountain herbs and San Pedro cacti, which, when sliced and reduced in boiling water, form a hallucinogenic drink used by shamans—and an increasing number of travelers.
- Mercado Central* two blocks north of Parque Principal, about 3 blocks south of Mercado Modelo. A locals' market that seemed better maintained and slightly more secure/upscale than Mercado Modelo. Has everything from fruit juices to good ceviche to medicinal teas to boot repair.
Real Plaza shopping center and Ripley in the city center. Mercado Modelo is a very big market where it´s possible to buy almost anything. It´s crowded and it´s easy to get robbed so be careful.
Some of the finest cooking to be had in northern Peru! Some local specialties include "arroz con pato" (duck served with rice) and the local variation of ceviche (raw fish marinated in lime juice).
Make sure to eat some «chifles» here, fried potatoes looking like potato chips.
Mi Tia's located on Elias Aguirre on the corner of the town square is excellent. Very friendly staff, a good selection of food, to go orders, dine in and at night they have a burger window.
Brother's Burgers & BBQ, Av. Arizola N° 200 Urb. Federico Villarreal, Chiclayo. A very friendly little restaurant run by the American Mikel, selling his delicious Hamburgers, Sandwiches, Spare rips.
Offers good menues. Grilled beef is one of the most popular and delicious dishes.
Sorrentos: this evening only set of diners is not to be missed. Excellent french fries and top notch salad, also great Lomo.
Fiesta Gourmet restaurant
It is the most famous in the north for its quality.
- Hostel Real, 338 Avenida Elias Aguirre, Chiclayo, Peru (Near the METRO grocery store). Not a backpacker's hostel, but more of a budget hotel. Good location in the city center, 2 steps away from a large supermarket, about a 6 minute walk to the famous City Market, which contains the Witch's Market. If you're traveling solo, you can fairly easily negotiate the price down to 20 Soles for a private room. No hot water; no breakfast or kitchen. 20-30 PEN for Private Room. edit
- Alojamiento Z, Mariscal Catilla 118 (Chiclayo), ☎ 074-222534. checkin: 06 am; checkout: 01 pm. Av Bolgnesi cuadra 9. Just close to Cruz del Sur terminal of buses. Quiet in the center of town: 25. edit
- Hotel Marbella, 2041 Av Saenz Peña, Chiclayo, Peru (On the corner with Cruz de Chalpon, about 15 minutes walk north from Parque Principal and three minutes past the large Tottus supermarket.), ☎ 074-252099. Clean rooms with hot water and a CD/cassette player (!). Ask for a room away from the street if that type of noise bothers you at night as the windows are pretty thin here. Wifi works in rooms but signal is definitely strongest in the hallways. No cooking facilities. S/. 50 for a private en suite double. edit
Neiz Hostel (Pedro Ruiz 756, Chiclayo): Clean, safe, and well located in the city. The staff is very kind, eager to help, and the prices are reasonable (s/60 - s/90 depending on room type).
- Gran Hotel Chiclayo. Located in the heart of Chiclayo. It is considered the best in the city.
- Rancho Santana (Rancho Santana), Pacora - Lambayeque, ☎ +51 979712145, . Farm stay one hour by public bus from Chiclayo (3 Soles). Good option for people who prefer to stay in the countryside. Horse Riding to Bosque de Pomac optional. edit
The bus companies, hotels & thieves are very central. Do not flash any valuables (such as taking a photo) when walking around this area; it looks safe but there are thieves around.
Pimentel is a fairly unsafe area. Travellers are reported to be robbed there in bright daylight, close to the beach.
Be carefull with the taxi drivers. They will lie to you that your hotel is closed and would want to take you to another one. Don't trust them.
Do not stay at Muchik Hostel (Vicente de la Vega 1127, Chiclayo). The staff has robbed multiple people of goods and cash straight from their wallets when they leave the room for a few minutes or the day. Police have been notified and the hostel has been fined but is still in operation. They do not prosecute theft as a criminal act in Peru so you have no recourse if robbed. The hotel owner and employees deny any theft has occurred but change their story with each new person they meet. Be safe, and stay somewhere else.
- Transportes Linea has hourly buses to Trujillo (3 hours) & on to Lima (11 hours).
- Movil Tours are good value to Chachapoyas & Tarapoto.
- Check out the mixed companies terminal on Av Bolognesi (in the adjoining square to Linea) for cheap overnight buses to Lima. Ask about for prices and times but we were able to get a 7pm bus (Oct 2015). These aren't the fanciest of buses but if you just want an adequate public transport option along this route then they are fine.
- Check AndesTransit for current information on Chiclayo bus services to national and international destinations.