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Nuts and Bolts: Trujillo and Huanchaco

by Robert Kittilson | 19 February 2010 3 Comments

Huanchaco Buses. ©UnpavedSouthAmerica.com
Huanchaco Buses. ©UnpavedSouthAmerica.com

Welcome to Nuts and Bolts: Trujillo and Huanchaco. This article is an attempt to explain some of the key features of the Trujillo/Huanchaco bus system. It also will highlight locations and directions to popular places to visit in the area. But first, here is a bit of info about the two towns.


Trujillo is the Third largest city in Peru, just trailing Arequipa, and is one of the best preserved colonial cites in the country. Trujillo offers many volunteering opportunities as well as many tourism related activities. The surfing village of Huanchaco is about 10-15 minutes by taxi and 20-30 minutes by buss.

For more info about Trujillo check out these articles…
Be Your Own Tourguide: Trujillo
Trujillo’s Casonas Antiguas (Antique Homes)
Colonial Tourism in Spanish Trujillo.


Huanchaco is the most popular place to stay for foreign tourists and surfers as well as anyone volunteering in Trujillo or the surrounding area. It offers the quaintness of a small fishing village, with the convenience of having a large city only 15-20 minutes away (Trujillo).

For more about Huanchaco check out Jessie’s articles on www.UnpavedSouthAmerica.com…
This is Huanchaco, Part One
This is Huanchaco, Part Two: Surfing
This is Huanchaco, Part Three: Volunteering


View Nuts and Bolts: Trujillo and Huanchaco in a larger map

All of the entries below are referencing the Google Map I created for this article.

Using this map: Click on the different colored thumbtacks to see which city bus lines come through the intersection.


#1 Huanchaco


To get into Trujillo from Huanchaco, catch the Red and Orange Huanchaco bus. This bus has three routes. The B, A and H. All three bus routes will go by Chan Chan and the Tottus (supermarket, #3). The routes split up as they near the core of Trujillo. The B heads north and ends up on España North, the A heads south and ends up on España South and the H heads south and ends up on America Sur. If you are anywhere and you see a Huanchaco bus heading in the westerly direction you can be sure it will go to Huanchaco sooner or later. There is also a smaller designation of a Heart (Corozón) and M on various Huanchaco buses, but they do not change the route enough to affect a regular traveler or tourist.

#2 Huanchaco Market

The Huanchaco Market is located on Manco Capac in between Bolivar and Los Abetos. You can get most everything you need here, but for non-locals I would suggest buying meat at a larger supermercado.
Check out my Flickr Page for more photos of the Huanchaco market.

#3 Chan Chan

The entrance to the main ruins at Chan Chan, is along Av. Mansiche and can be reached by taking any one of the Huanchaco buses. There are usualy a few taxis waiting to take you the two kilometers to the ruins and ticket booth. There is also a sort-of Military security car at the main entrance to Chan Chan and the area seems fairly secure. Jessie and I walked this portion because the Taxis had taken lunch break. This location is serviced by all three of the different Huanchaco Bus routes.

#4 Mall Adventura Plaza

Here you can by stuff like you can in the USA. There is a Tottus (groceries), Sodimac (hardware), Saga Falabella (cloths), Ripley (everything) and Cinemark (cinema). This location is serviced by all three of the different Huanchaco Bus routes.

#5 Huaca Arco Iris

When you purchace your Chan Chan ticket you get entrance to Huaca Arco Iris as well. Take the Red and Blue and White “Milagros – Buenos Aires” bus from Trujillo to get here. Make sure to ask the bus wrangler if the bus is going to Arco Iris (“Va a Arco Iris?”). We picked up the bus near the interception of Nicolas de Pierola and La Construccion, just north-west of the Terminal Terrestre Norte.

#6 Huaca Takaynamo


Huaca Takaynamo is not currently open, but we snuck a look at the ruins under repair. This can also be reached with the Milagros – Buenos Aires bus.

#7 Terminal Terrestre Norte

In this terminal you should be able to find cheap buses to northern locations such as: Chiclayo, Mancora and Tumbes.

#8 Estadio Mansiche

Trujillo’s professional futból team Cesar Vallejo plays here.

#9 Old City Wall


This is the only remaining piece of the old protective wall around the Spanish colonial town of Trujillo Peru. The encircling road of España has now taken its place at protecting it from pedestrians trying to get across this nightmare.

#10 Major Bus companies

This area and one block SE (Del Ejercito) will have higher end bus lines offering rides all over the Country and South America, but only to major cites and tourist locations. Look for buses from the España North (Red thumb tack) entry for help getting here via city bus.

#11 Linea Bus lines

Linea is another major, far reaching, bus line and it’s on the opposite side of town from any other bus station. If you arrive here, as with any bus station, be prepared to be bombarded by taxi drivers. Look for buses from the Ovalo Grau (Purple thumb tack) entry for help getting here via city bus.

#12 Plaza de Armas, Trujillo


The main square in Trujillo is big open and beautiful.

#13 Trujillo Market


Trujillo’s market is big and has almost everything you would ever need. Be careful in dark tight spaces and always keep moving. And of course, go with a friend. The surrounding area is also a market in its self, and we found some things were cheaper on the outskirts of the market area. The Huanchaco B route goes here.

#14 Huaca de la Luna


Huaca de la Luna is one of the more well preserved ruins on the Peruvian seaboard. You can catch a Combi at Ovalo Grau that will take you out to the ruins.

#15 Buenos Aires




Buenos Aires is not necessarily safe at any time and especially at night. The Malecón Colón (waterfront park) looks as though it has seen better days. A rusting play area sits with the wood splintered and weatherworn. From Ovalo Mansiche (Pink thumb tack) we caught the Blue striped “Buenos Aires” bus to get here. We have also seen the Green and White “Beach Sceen” bus and the Blue and Red striped Milagro – Buenos Aires bus that will take you here as well. Be careful in this area, please. See our post on Buenos Aires

Well, if you got to the bottom of this and it has helped, good luck and safe travels.

Written by Robert Kittilson

I am an Ex-Bike Messenger turned freelance photographer that loves: Bicycles, Fútbol and Beer or any food that tastes good. See all posts by


  • Will said:

    Thanks so much for taking the time to write this up and do the map. I passed through Trujillo/Huanchaco about three years ago and found the weather to be so pleasant and the vibe to be as advertised – “muy tranquillo” – so much so, that when my most recent contract job ended, my wife and I picked Huanchaco to call home for the next…undetermined amount of time. Again, thanks for the work involved in this post, I’m sure I’ll be referencing it many more times in the future.

  • Daytripping around Trujillo, Peru | marmalade.ca said:

    […] ride will take about 20-30 minutes, and will take you right past the Chan Chan ruins (see below). Unpaved South America has a good write-up on the different routes, complete with a Google Map showing where the […]

  • Daytripping around Trujillo, Peru | kellykay's Blog said:

    […] ride will take about 20-30 minutes, and will take you right past the Chan Chan ruins (see below). Unpaved South America has a good write-up on the different routes, complete with a Google Map showing where the city’s […]