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Surfin’ Peru?

Jun 30th 2010
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«Caballitos de totora» on Huanchaco beach

Just arrived at the Pacific coast—not counting the grey, oppressive Lima waterfront—my attention was captured by some reoccurring iconography and taxonomy about the Caballito de Totora all over the place: restaurants, hotels and monuments in public squares in Huanchaco. I am talking about those banana-shaped, wooden rafts used uninterruptedly for the last 3000 years by fishermen of the area(1).

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A fisherman on his «Caballito de totora» and a surfer

Many say that this is the first documented form of surfing, although there is a lot of debate around it(2). Anyway, the water was way too cold for your beloved to give it a try, so I moved up north to Máncora: now we are talking! Beautiful sunny beach, not-that-cold water and more ceviche than your belly can fit! :-)

On the other hand, if you add at the preceding the fact that this place is a famous surf spot, one will not be surprised by the village being all but polluted by a gigantic croud of gringos, making the whole Máncora experience less pleasant(3).

It reminded me of similar spots, specifically Kuta Bali, most of the Australian east-coast, Punta del Este in Uruguay for naming a few.

Instead, what I was looking for was waiting at a couple of hours walking: beauty, silence, peace.

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Mancora's beach

More photos in a dedicated gallery.


  1. At least according to St. Wikipedia: in English here and here in Spanish.
  2. For a brief history of surfing, check here.
  3. I am especially thinking on the bleached-hair tattooed youngsters yelling We want party! at 5 AM in the middle of main street when the—shitty lousy yet played incredibly loud—music eventually stopped!

This post is filed under America, Peru and tagged , , , .

2 Responses

  1. a-l-e says:

    Hola Pier! “…que onda?” (someone told me it means “How R U?”)

    just 4 a while…
    …I thought U were the surfer on the wave!!!
    eheheh…
    U know… after the parachutes and the bungees… :-D

  2. MAMMA says:

    Finalmente ce l’hai fatta a cucire le bandierine del Perù e dell’Ecuador! Bravo!

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