- Mancora and nearby Vichayitos provide Peru’s best beaches all year round
- Great beach weather throughout the year
- Wide range of hotel choice from standard to luxury hotels
- Great place for surfing, kiteboarding and other watersports
- Great whale watching excursions in July and October
Even though Peru has a huge coastline due to the Humboldt Current that dominates large parts of the Peruvian Coast, water temperatures for the Pacific Ocean are not the most comfortable. This is true from the border with Chile till around the city of Trujillo where this colder sea current turns away further from the coast. This means that the far north coast of Peru, close with the border with Ecuador has the best beach options in Peru. Also blessed with a warm climate throughout the year, this is the place to go for some down time on the beach. Mancora is probably the best known name but for those looking for a little quieter place to enjoy the beach, Vichayitos is probably your pick.
THINGS TO DO
Mancora itself is not really the place you think of when talking history but nevertheless the region has its fair share of Peruvian History. Piura, the largest city close to Mancora is the area where Francisco Pizarro set first foot on wall when arriving to Peru in 1532. It is here that one of the first churches on the South American mainland was built; the church of Colan, still standing till the day of today. In more recent times, in 1941, the area north of Mancora, Tumbes was involved in a violent border dispute with Ecuador. Mancora, a true beach village used to be a laidback fisher town till the beaches started receiving more and more visitors due to the nice beaches and good weather all year round. Nowadays most people in Mancora live from tourism but fishing is still the main industry in the region. Nearby Vichayitos is an even smaller town and is the place with the largest and nicest beaches.
Mancora and Vichayitos are located on the Peruvian North Coast about 120km (75mi) from the border with Ecuador. The closest cities are Tumbes just before the border and Piura, about 180km (110mi) to the South. The geography around Mancora is a slightly hilly, dry desert landscape with the Pacific Ocean on one side and the gradual ascend of the Andes on the other. The region is crossed with rivers providing fertile lands in their meanders. The geographical position of the area, right at the confluence of the two large water currents on this side of the planet: the cold Humboldt current (coming from South) and the warm El Niño current (from North). The confluence of these two currents is responsible for the semitropical and dry climate, with on average more than 300 sunny days per year. While on the beaches South of Piura they have a more temperate, desert like weather, the beaches north of Tumbes are warmer and very humid. Therefore Mancora and Vichayitos, due to its unique location enjoys the best of these two climate systems.
- Day temperatures ranging from 21º to 34º C, with moderate winds from the south
- Winds can intensify in the months from June to October
- Two seasons; winter and summer + transition months
- Little or no rain all year round
- Humidity levels on average around 50-60%
- Average Min / Max Winter 20ºC/68ºF – 26ºC/79ºF
The main obvious reason to visit Mancora is for some beach & relax time. Some drinks at the swimming pool, some good seafood at a local restaurant, walks on the beach and perhaps some activities such as surfing, kitesurfing, bodyboarding or horseback riding. Sounds like a perfect recipe. Mancora is known worldwide for its surfing and great waves all year round. The waves close to Mancora are also ideal for beginners and there are several surfing schools in town. For those who, apart from the all the above, feel the need to undertake some excursions; in the months July and October the region is visited by large schools of whales passing through making it an excellent time for whale spotting. Seeing these giants up close does put things in perspective. Another interesting excursion is a visit to the Manglares de Tumbes; these swamplands are home to hundreds types of birds as well a crocodile farm.