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Table of Contents for This Page


Free Time





Drinking Water

Site Tours




    2002 Field School in Barranco


Our Peruvian staff prepares three meals a day, six days a week,  Monday through Saturday.  Breakfast consists of juice, coffee, tea (regular and herb teas), fruit, yogurt, fresh baked bread, jams, and butter.  In the field we have sandwiches, fruit, cookies, and chips.  Dinners are typical Peruvian cooking and usually consist of three courses and fruit juice.  The first course is either soup or salad.  Some common main courses are lomo saltado (stir fried beef and vegetables), aji de gallina (chicken in a cheese and chile sauce), fish in various sauces such as ajo de mojo (a garlic sauce) or chorrillana (a tomato, chile, and onion sauce), and stewed duck (a north coast specialty). For those who wish to give it a try, guinea pig is available.   The main course is served with white rice or potatoes or both.  Peruvian food is not even remotely like Mexican food, so banish all thoughts of tacos, burritos, and enchiladas.  It is similar to Cuban, Puerto Rican, or Spanish cooking.  Vegetarian meals are available; however, we can’t provide vegan meals.  Dessert is served with dinner a few times a week.  The project has a staff washes the dishes.  You won’t have housekeeping chores.

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Cooks preparing burgers and fires for the 4th of July cookout


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     Brian at the grill

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                        View of Huanchaco                                 Caballitos de Totora in Huanchaco


After dinner is free time.  Socializing, reading, the beach, music, and night clubs are the main options for after-hours entertainment.  Be sure to bring some paperbacks and music.  The ocean is too cold for swimming.  Some students take surfing lessons, which include the board and body suit.  Huanchaco is a quiet beach resort and fishing village with a population of about 20,000.  June and July are the off season for tourism; it‘s the Peruvian winter from April through September.

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                                Students at Chan Chan, the Chimu capital, AD 1000 to 1460

On Saturday we have tours of major archaeological sites in the valley.  We definitely do NOT leave at 7:00.  Rather we generally leave after a hot lunch and spend a few hours touring a site.  Sunday is free time.  Weekends are a good time to check out Trujillo.  The city was founded in 1535.  Much of early Spanish architecture is still preserved in the center of the city.  Mayorista, a sprawling market near the center of town, also is worth a visit.  Theaters in Trujillo show current US movies in English with Spanish subtitles, and there are clubs with live music.  Buses and colectivos (vans) run every 15 or 20 minutes between Huanchaco.  One way fare is about 10 or 20 cents.  A taxi ride costs a couple bucks.  At the end of the field school we will travel up the north coast to El Brujo, Túcume, and the Museum of the Royal Tombs of the Lord of Sipán.  These sites are world renown for their important archaeological discoveries, including the burials of the Señora de Cao and the Lord of Sipán, as well as some of the most spectacular adobe pyramids in South America. . 

Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: View of the Pyramids of Túcume, Lambayeque
        View of the Pyramids of Túcume, Lambayeque

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                       The Royal Tombs of Sipán Museum, Lambayeque


Students stay at a rental house in Huanchaco near the beach.  Students share double or triple rooms with shared baths and hot showers (Don't expect there to be hot all of the time. ).  Meals are prepared and served at the house by the field school cooking staff.  We also rent a house in Huanchaco for graduate students and lab space.  You will need to bring towels and sheet and blanket (single bed) or a sleeping bag.   


Calling home from Peru is cheap and easy.  In addition to Skype at internet cafes, there are phone exchanges in Huanchaco, where calls to the US cost 10 cents a minute.  Also you can buy calling cards in Peru that cost 10 cents a minute.  

Email is the best way to stay in touch.  There are several internet cafés in Huanchaco.  Email access is less than 40 cents for an hour.  

Mail is not recommended.  You can have letters sent to Correo Central, Trujillo, La Libertad, Peru (that's general delivery) or the Correo Central, Huanchaco, La Libertad.  However, letters take 10 to 14 days to reach Peru.


The Huanchaco has good, cheap laundry services.  They charge by the kilo.  Probably 5 to 10 bucks a week should cover you unless you go through a lot of cloths.  You should bring enough clothing to go one week without washing clothesBring some warm clothes for evenings and nights as well as summer clothes (shorts, t-shirts, and a swim suit for the beach).  Huanchaco is cool and damp in the summer. 


The lab house has speakers for MP3 players.  You should definitely bring down your own music. 


Peruvian electric current is 220 volts, not the US 110.  You'll need to buy a converter (available at Radio Shack, Best But) to run any electrical gadgets you bring down.  Batteries are readily available.


The project will provide an abundant supply of purified drinking water; tap water is not safe for drinking.  Soft drinks (all the major brands) and beer can be purchased at local stores.  The drinking age in Peru is 18.


Chan Chan, the capital of the Chimu Empire (A.D. 1000 to 1470).  Located in the Moche Valley, this is one of the largest urban centers in the New World.  The urban core consists of several square miles of pyramids, barrios, noble palaces, and massive royal burial compounds (known as ciudadelas).  Chan Chan is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Huaca de la Luna, the capital of the Sotuhern Moche Sate (A.D. 200 to 700).  Huaca del Sol is the largest adobe mound in the New World, constructed from 140 million adobe bricks and Huaca de la Luna has extraordinary painted murals.  The site museum displays finds from the sites and provides an overview of the ancient world of the Moche.  Huaca de la Luna has been nominated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Tucume, one of the largest ceremonial centers on the coast of Peru with more than 26 pyramids.  It’s located in the Lambayeque Valley and was occupied from AD 800 until Spanish contact in 1532.

Museo de las Tumbas Reales de los Señores de SipánOne of the world’s great museums.  This museum presents extraordinary gold, silver, and ceramic objects from the royal Moche tombs at the site of Sipán.

El Brujo,  A Moche urban and ceremonial center in the Chicama Valley, 30 miles to the north of Huanchaco.  Excavations at El Brujo have exposed elaborate painted abode friezes (molded adobe murals) and royal tombs.  The site museum displays finely crafted gold, silver, pottery, and textiles from the site.