Discovering the undiscovered around Chiclayo
Sat 15 Dec 2012 - Sun 16 Dec 2012
The original plan was to go straight through to Lima from Chachapoyas, but after numerous other travellers told us how amazing the Tombs of Sipan were, we decided to make yet another detour. This time a 10 hr detour to Chiclayo haha.
The main attraction here is the Royal Tombs of Sipan Museum. On more than one occasion, we were told that the museum is considered to be the top museum in South America so naturally we had to see what the hype was all about. The full day tour included a visit to the archaeological site of the Tucume Pyramids (and onsite museum), the actual Sipan archaelogical site, and of course, the star attraction - the Real Tombs of Sipan Museum.
So why exactly is Sipan so important?
The Sipan archaeological site is considered to be one of the most significant discoveries in the last 30 years because some of the most important archaelogical remains of the Mochica Culture have been uncovered. The main tomb of the Lord of Sipas was found intact and untouched by thieves...at least that's what wiki says haha. Of course we wouldn't know because 90% of our English speaking tour was in Spanish (even after we were specifically told it would be an English tour)!
The Tucume Archaelogical Site covers over 540 acres with 26 major pyramids and was once considered a major regional center.
Peruvian hairless dog outside museum
Sipan Archaeological Site - only 10% discovered, 90% to go!
Tomb of the Lord of Sipan
Funeral chamber of the Priest
Another funeral chamber
Real Tombs of Sipan Museum - no pictures allowed inside museum so this is the only photo we have haha
Lunch - El Pacifico
At lunch, we shared a table with a couple from Vancouver who were born in Peru but immigrated to Canada. They were super nice and patiently explained each item on the menu for us. They even let us try some of their dishes, which were traditional Peruvian dishes (and turned out to be the best Ceviche we had in Peru).
Ceviche con Mero - Mero fish ceviche VERY good!
Palta rellena con pulpa de cangrejo - Peruvian dish made of avocado stuffed with fresh crab meat (like huge chunks)! Taste a lot better than it looks here haha.
Danny and I were both slightly disappointed in the tour for a various reasons. First off, even though we requested an English speaking guide, the guide spoke primarily in Spanish 90% of the tour (he would give Spanish explanations for 10 mins, and then turn to us and give us 2 sentence explanations in English). I guess we should have specified for an English TOUR instead of just a guide who spoke english.
Secondly, the tour size was huge. It started out a small group of 10 or so, but for some reason, random people kept joining our group. By the end, it was almost 20 people to one guide.
And lastly, the last 2 sights were very rushed and we barely had enough time in the Real Tombs Museum, which was supposed to be the main attraction.
Up until this point, Danny and I were lucky and have had good luck with all our tours/guides. It wasn't until after this tour, that we realized how heavily a bad guide can affect the entire experience of the tour. It was unfortunate that our tour operator didn't follow through, as we both feel that with a better guide, we would have enjoyed (and understood) the sights a lot more.