• The Mochica Diaries: Fiestas de San Pedro

    In my third week, I was lucky enough to experience the Fiestas de San Pedro, or St Peter’s festival. There were celebrations all week, with the main holiday being on the 29th June. This is a holiday for the whole of Peru, but it is particularly special for Huanchaco as a fishing village, because St Peter was the Patron Saint for fishing.

    To celebrate St Peter the fishermen of Huanchaco built a big reed boat, called a Patacho. The fishermen have been building this boat for three weeks. Although Huanchaco has been celebrating St Peter for much longer, the tradition of the patacho began thirty years ago. However, there is evidence to suggest that in the Chimu era, 900-1470 AD, patachos were also built for various celebrations.Read more

  • The Mochica Diaries: Meeting Huanchaco’s fishermen

    In my second week in Huanchaco I have had the opportunity to meet more of Huanchaco’s Mochica Chimu fishermen community.

    I learnt that the typical day of a fisherman starts very early. The fishermen make their way to Huanchaco beach to start fishing as early as 05.30am and spend about four hours on the water. They then go to the market to sell the fish, sometimes with the help of their wives or other female family members. The afternoons are usually spent fixing nets or going to the totora ponds to harvest the reeds or make a boat. The fishermen usually end their day at around 9pm, in order to get up early for the next day. The fishermen explained to me that it is quite a precarious trade – on some days there are lots of fish to be found and on other days none. Also, sometimes the waves are too rough to go fishing.Read more