Right under the Equatorial line, Mancora is a marine, surf, and ecological paradise. The place to see and be seen in Peru, where foreigners come shoulder to shoulder with the Peruvian jet set. Eternally sunny weather and bath-tube-warm waters make Mancora the perfect spot for switching off from a busy lifestyle, enjoying nature or chilling after your hiking adventures in the Andes.
How to get there:
You can either take a plane from Lima to Piura, and then a bus to Mancora, or take a bus directly to Mancora. Cruz del Sur, Oltursa, and Emtrafesa offers excellent service all the way to your destination for a budget-friendly price.
A beach for every need:
The beach closest to the town is noisy and full of people: locals, tourists, surfers, backpackers, hippies and so on. The atmosphere is mostly young and laid back inviting you to have fun and chill. During the day everybody is enjoying the beautiful sandy beach and when the sun goes down the clubs and parties keep the visitors busy all night long. On the main street, there are plenty of good restaurants and pubs to choose from. Accommodation in hotels and hostels range from 15 to 100+ soles (5US$ to 30US$ and up), so there is something for every budget. The only inconvenience is that the beach has some big rocks you should watch out when the tide is high.
At the southern entrance of the town, there is a turn off into the old Pan American highway where you find the best beach stretches: Las Pocitas and Vichayito.
Las Pocitas is less busy and noisy than Mancora beach, and it has fewer rocks as well. There are many mid-range resorts with accommodation prices from 60 soles and up (around 20US$ and up). For the adventurous ones water sports like windsurfing, kite surfing, kayak are a way of getting the adrenaline high, but if you’re on a romantic getaway, you can ride a horse along the shore. I stayed at Peña Linda Bungalows in a beautiful room with sea view, and I was very pleased with the service.
Vichayito is the most exclusive beach of the area, where you find the high-end resorts. It is the perfect place to de-stress and switch off from the world. Located after Pocitas, it takes around 15 minutes to get there from downtown Mancora. The white, sandy beach is almost empty, allowing you -with some luck- to get a glimpse of sea lions, dolphins, whales or the birth of sea tortoises.
On my last visit to Mancora, I signed up for a whale watching tour with Pacifico adventures. During the months of August, September, and October they take you to see the humpback whales that comes all the way from Antarctica to reproduce on these calm and warm waters. I got to see the whales jumping, courting each other and breastfeeding their babies. The guides are biologists that do both eco-tours, preservation, and research.
Photo credit: Pacifico Adventures
Swimming with wild tortoises:
From Mancora, you can take a bus to Organos (or like I did, take a 4 hours walk along the beach). At Organos harbor, there are lots of sea tortoises you can get to swim with for five soles (less than 2$). The fishermen feed them, so they stick around the visitors who usually get a little scared when the tortoises bump into them to get to the food. Pelicans and seagulls gliding around add even more excitement to the mix. Being so close to these amazing animals in their natural habitat is truly a unique experience.
After I had got home, I had to express in a canvas my impressions of this beautiful week in Mancora.
I hope you will have a great time when visiting Mancora as I did when I visited it. Please post some pictures in the comments if you do. Happy travel!
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