North Coast

  • 2 Weeks

Explore beaches and ancient civilizations heading toward Ecuador.

Head north of Lima to Caral, where South America's oldest known civilization arose about 5000 years ago. Further north, spy ancient engravings of human sacrifice at Sechín and continue to Trujillo. Also see the Moche pyramids of Huacas del Sol y de la Luna, the ruins of the once-mighty Chan Chan and the Museo Arqueológico Municipal de Moche.

Off the sleepy beaches at Huanchaco, surfers hit the breakers while local fishers trawl the coast. To the north, surf spot Puerto Chicama boasts one of the world’s longest left-hand breaks. With a major makeover, the tiny town now has a wonderful new malecón overlooking the action.

Then it’s Chiclayo, with world-class museums nearby showcasing riches from the important archaeological site of Sipán.

Craft-market hub Piura boasts great dining, while the witch doctors of Huancabamba are tucked into the Andes. Peru’s best beaches lie further north, with resorts such as Colán, Máncora, and Punta Sal; linger on here to feast on fresh seafood and dance the balmy nights away.

The journey ends at Tumbes, gateway to Ecuador and jumping-off point to Peru’s endangered mangrove swamps teeming with wildlife (mind the crocs!).