Last update 08/26/2023

Discover the Moche Route

As the summer is in full effect in the coast of Peru, and the rainy season started in the Andean and the jungle of the country, many popular attractions are close due to maintenance, such as the Inca Trail that closes in February and reopens in March. Travelers are not aware that besides the wonders of the south of Peru, exists a series of destinations rich in culture and history, located in the north of the country.

Like all the other popular landmarks in Peru, these northern cities are worth visiting and have an immense tourism potential. As part of the effort of the Peruvian Trade and Tourism Chamber, MINCETUR, to promote new destinations for locals and foreigners to visit, they have created the Moche Route.

The Moche Route specifically covers the desert coast of Peru, from La Libertad to Lambayeque, being this area known for its important Pre-Columbian cultures, Moche, Chimu, and Sican. The Mochicas are known for their work with gold, irrigation systems, huacas and their elaborated ceramics that expressed their lives with detailed scenes of their daily routines. The Chimu and Sican cultures were similar to the Moche culture, they also used ceramics and detailed work with precious metals, like gold, silver and bronze. These three cultures are known for the way they organized their society, ranking categories of people in hierarchy.

The Moche Route highlights the main architectural remains from these Pre-Incan cultures, such as huacas, tombs, pyramids and mud cities. In the area of Lambayeque, where the Moche and Sican culture predominated, one can find multiple archeological traces. The Lord of Sipan is probably one of the most emblematic symbols of this area, for this reason thousands visit Huaca Rajada, tomb of the most important ruler of the Moche civilization. In this area there are other important archeological remains, such as Tucume, an archeological complex where the Sicans built an impressive group of pyramids. The Sican culture had another important complex called, The Sican Archeological Complex, known for its burial grounds, huacas, where the remains of the Lord of Sican lays. Pyramids made of adobe are also found in this complex.

In La Libertad, the other part of this route, there are also important archeological remains, like the Pyramid of the Sun and Pyramid of the Moon, which were built for ceremonial purposes, like human sacrifices, and served as administrative and religious centers of the Moche culture. The Chimu culture were settled in this area as well, and built a pyramid called the Pyramid of the Dragon or of the Rainbow. Another important archeological complex in this area is El Brujo, known for the discovery of the mommy of an important female Moche ruler, The Lady of Cao. Last but not least, one of the most important attractions in this zone is, Chan Chan, the largest in Pre-Hispanic-America and declared a World Cultural Heritage Site by the UNESCO in 1986.

Along with these archeological remains, this route features the most contemporary museums that showcase gold, ceramic and textile. To the surprise of many, these museums also display mommies of the most important blood lines of these regions. The Royal Tombs of Sipan Museum shows all the objects that were found in the Tombs of Sipan, as well as the 12 tombs of different people of The Moche culture’s society. This museum is considered one of the top ten museums in the world and the most modern one in Peru.

In 2011, MINCETUR received a Ulysses Award for starting this initiative of promoting other magnificent destinations within Peru. With that said, we invite you to immerse yourself into the history and culture of the most significant Pre-Columbine civilizations that are part of the Moche Route.

 

The Author
The Mavatravel team

Welcome to Mavatavel, your gateway to unforgettable travel experiences in Peru. Discover a world of adventure and culture with our premier tour agency.

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