Máncora is the place to see and be seen along the Peruvian coast – in the summer months foreigners flock here to rub sunburned shoulders with the frothy cream of the Peruvian jet set. It’s not hard to see why – Peru’s best sandy beach stretches for several kilometers in the sunniest region of the country, while dozens of plush resorts and their budget-conscious brethren offer up rooms just steps from the rolling waves. On shore, most of the action is focused on the noisy main street, with plenty of good seafood restaurants and international flavors to choose from.

The consistently good surf and bath-tub-warm waters draw a sun-bleached, board-toting bunch, and raucous nightlife keeps visitors busy after the sun dips into the sea in a ball of fiery flames.

Year-round sun means that this is one of the few resort towns on the coast that doesn’t turn into a ghost town at less popular times.

Located about halfway between Talara and Tumbes, Máncora has the Pan-American Hwy passing right through its middle, within 100m of the surf, where it becomes Av Piura, which changes to Av Grau halfway through town. At the southern entrance to town, there's a turn off from the Pan-American that takes you south along the coast on the Antigua Panamericana. This quiet stretch has the best high-end and midrange resorts, and direct access to Las Pocitas and Vichayito Beaches, probably the best stretch of sand around.