Ancient cultures and magical ruins wait to be discovered along Peru’s compelling western coastline. With the Andes rising nearby, and the deep blue Pacific’s waves lapping against its sun-parched shores, this is a unique and inspiring place, where wonders from yesteryear exhibit amazing geometric patterns and stylised artwork. Salaverry welcomes you ashore close to Trujillo, Peru’s second-largest city, set in a land scattered with impressive ruins and archaeological treasures left by ancient civilisations.
Sugarcane, pineapple and asparagus grow in the fertile Moche Valley, and this area is sprinkled with immense, impressive ruins from the Moche and Chimu cultures. The sprawling Chan Chan Ruins are all that's left of a mighty, pre-Columbian city, moulded from sand and mud. The city rose between 900 and 1470, and was the capital of the Chimor empire. One of the largest adobe cities in the world - and the biggest of the Americas - it would eventually fall to decline after the Incas conquered it. The temple of Huaca del Dragón is also close by, rising as a small pyramid, embossed with relief patterns of fire-breathing dragons and animals. South of the Moche River the remains of the Huaca del Sol y la Luna temples loom, built to honour the sun, moon and heavens by the Moche civilization.
Trujillo itself is splashed with colonial colour and soaring palm trees, and there are plenty of cathedrals and museums to explore. You’ll want to taste traditional Huanchaco ceviche while you’re here, soft prawns or sea bass combined with spicy red chillies and a tangy squeeze of lime.