Orientation Among locals, Callanca is famous for its food – over 2,000 people show up on weekends in the summertime (December-March) to have a large, late lunch with the family. Several of Callanca’s 18 outdoor restaurants are large enough to accommodate a dance floor and late lunch typically transitions into an evening dance party. Callanca […]
Among locals, Callanca is famous for its food – over 2,000 people show up on weekends in the summertime (December-March) to have a large, late lunch with the family. Several of Callanca’s 18 outdoor restaurants are large enough to accommodate a dance floor and late lunch typically transitions into an evening dance party. Callanca restaurants are particularly famous for duck, goat, ceviche, and home-fermented juices and alcohols made from corn and grape (and up to 20 other flavors). If you are in Chiclayo or anywhere else in Lambayeque on a weekend, we insist that you visit for Callanca at least for lunch, if not for a full day of hiking, farm visits, and eating. Also, Callanca is always at least sunny all afternoon, if not all day.
As mentioned above, this is the number one activity in Callanca and any of the 18 restaurants are great options. Meals typically cost about S/.12 and locally grown and fermented fruit juices cost S/.3 for a pitcher. Local specialties include duck, goat, and ceviche, though anything on the menu will be excellent. Lunch is the best time to seek out a meal and is served throughout the afternoon.
Situated around a river, Callanca is fertile and provides much of the produce for Chiclayo city. We highly recommend taking a tour of Jose’s farm to see how much of the local produce is grown. Jose will explain the seasons and the growing process for mangoes, maracuya fruit, corn, yuca, berries, oranges, limes, avocados as big as your head, and other local fruits and veggies. You will also probably leave the tour with an armful of produce picked fresh off the tree.
Jose is also willing to host tourists in a host family environment – this will give you a great look at how local farmers live and ensure the consumption of many armloads of locally-grown fruits and vegetables during your stay. To get to Jose’s, ask any mototaxi driver to take you to ‘la chakra de Jose.’
Read about Jack’s farm visit here.
If you’re looking to make your Callanca trip a full-day affair, we recommend hiking to Cerro San Bartolo in the morning. The hike takes you between farms, past local houses and schools, giving you a good look at local life, as well as a chill, flat hike to occupy your morning. The view from on top of Cerro San Bartolo rewards with a look at the surrounding farm country.
To get there, you can hike 40 minutes through the town (keep following the road the way you came in and if you’re ever in doubt, just say ‘San Bartolo’ to any passerby and they will point you the right way). Additionally, you can take a mototaxi for S/.1.50 – there are motos consistently driving through town.
Callanca women are famous in the area for embroidering napkins, tablecloths, and blouses with intricate floral and animal designs. Many of these designs are typically used at weddings and other special events and families from around Lambayeque and Chiclayo come to Callanca to contract the women for these events.
Maria Custodio (978-023-789) sells her artisan goods from her workshop across from the Iglesia San Benito.
If you want to stay locally, we recommend either staying with Jose (mentioned above) or at El Tambo (074-612-654), which is right near the Cruce Laran. Callanca is also extremely close to Chiclayo, if you prefer to stay in the city and visit for the day.
From Chiclayo: Get to Bolognesi street and head toward the Plaza Real (if you just say Plaza Real, anyone will be able to point you the firght way). You will hit a park near the Plaza and there will be vans (combis) parked on the side of the street. Tell the combi to drop you off at ‘el Cruce de Callanca.’ From there, get in a mototaxi to Callanca (S/.1.50). If you want to go from here directly to the Cerro San Bartolo and hike back to town for lunch, the moto will cost S/.3 to take you to the Cerro from the cruce.