Visit two Chimú archeological sites and the coastal village of Huanchaco on this combo tour from Trujillo with a knowledgeable guide. Start at the Temple of the Dragon (also known as the Temple of the Rainbow), an adobe pyramid that features beautiful frieze murals. Then tour the biggest ancient city in South America, former Chimú capital and a UNESCO World Heritage site, Chan Chan. Explore its plazas and learn about its history, and then finish your tour in Huanchaco to see its famous reed fishing boats. Hotel transport is included.
After hotel pickup in Trujillo, your tour starts at Huaco el Dragon, the Temple of the Dragon — also known as Huaco del Arco Iris, or Temple of the Rainbow — just a 10-minute drive from central Trujillo. Built for religious and ceremonial purposes by the Chimú people, who lived in northern Peru from about 900 AD to the 1400s, the adobe pyramid is known for its intricate frieze murals. With your guide, walk around the temple and learn a bit about the history of and theories behind the site — the temple features carvings of a dragon (hence its name), and it’s believed that the temple was used during rituals to honor the rainbow (hence its other name). Continue your tour to your next site, the former Chimú capital of Chan Chan. This UNESCO World Heritage site is the largest pre-Columbian city in South America and was the center of Chimú culture and politics from approximately 900 to 1470, when the Incan Empire arrived and conquered the city. Explore the 7-square-mile (18-sq-km) archeological site with your guide, touring its array of shrines, cemeteries, reservoirs and ceremonial plazas. Learn about its structure — made from adobe brick and mud — and marvel at its expansive, walled design. You’ll visit one of the main features, Nik-An Palace, a complex that features ceremonial courtyards and walls adorned with friezes. Next, head about 15 minutes to Huanchaco, a fishing village and beach town known for its caballitos de totora (little reed horses), small boats made out of reed that have been used by Peruvian fisherman for 3,000 years. While you admire their interesting design, hear about their history and modern-day use from your guide.Your tour ends with hotel drop-off in Trujillo.