Chiclayo City Guide
OVERVIEW: About 10 miles from the Pacific coast, Chiclayo is Peru's 4th largest city. Despite its size, it is often passed over by tourists in favor of more familiar destinations such as Cusco, Lima and Machu Picchu.
WEATHER: Warm and dry with very little rainfall (20-30 °C).
SAFETY: Petty theft is an issue here, even in hotels. Don't flash your belongings.
MUST DO: There aren't many attractions, which probably explains why most tourists don't bother with Chiclayo. Check out the church and palace at the main square.
RENT AN APARTMENT IN CHICLAYO: $500.00 should get you something nice in the best area (Santa Victoria).
HOSTEL DORM BED/NIGHT $10.00 or less to stay in Chiclayo.
NIGHTLIFE IN CHICLAYO: 6.25/10
Most bars and clubs will be location on or walking distance from Avenue Santa Victoria. It's no Lima, but there are enough options for a city of its size. Obnoxiously loud Reggaeton is the music of choice here, as it is in much of Latin America. I suggest renting an apartment on Santa Victoria for both safety and nightlife purposes.
I recommend: Discoteca Magno
BOTTLE OF BEER: $3.00
CHANCE OF HOOKING-UP IN CHICLAYO: 6.25/10
As I mentioned, there aren't many tourists here so you'll have the exotic factor going for you. However, although girls in Chiclayo have a reputation in Peru for being easy, as a foreigner, you'll not likely to benefit from this in the way you might hope. More than anything, girls here like to court attention. That is to say that they are more attention whores as opposed to actual, well, whores. So, while you may find yourself receiving smiles and seductive looks at the bar, it's more likely that the girl is thinking more about free drinks than she is thinking about going home with you.
It also has a small town feeling despite it's size, so these girls have their reputations to consider. And in an incredibly macho society (which it is here) you get the sense that a gal is going to get mountains of flak from local guys if she goes home with a gringo. That's not to say you won't have any luck here, but if your focus is women, you're better sticking to Cusco, Arequipa or Lima.
***ONLINE DATING: Latin American Cupid allows you to talk with girls and set up dates before you arrive in the country. For this reason, I recommend it.
ARE GIRLS HOT IN CHICLAYO?: 6.25/10.
Could be worse. Many Peruvians say that the best looking women come from Trujillo/Chiclayo. Personally, I'd give that title to either Lima or Arequipa. Different strokes and all that. What I will say, though, is that the women have better bodies than in most other parts of the country. And due to the weather, they show them off more. It's certainly a less conservative culture than what you'll find in the capital or in the sierra.
If you want to make the most of your time in Peru, you will need to speak some Spanish. Synergy Spanish is the best resource for learning Spanish quickly and easily.
GROCERIES: Milk (1L)= $1.30 Loaf of Bread= $1.75 Eggs= $1.70 Water (1.5L)= $1.00 Cigarettes= $3.50
JOB OPPORTUNITIES: None that I can fathom. Perhaps you could teach English here but the pay would be ghastly.
TAXI: Should be around $2.50 to get around - tico taxis, so don't expect comfort
NOTES: This is a rough and gritty city. I hesitate to recommend it to anyone. Although the cost of living is low and the weather is nice, Chiclayo offers little else. Certainly not one of Latin America's hidden gems.
OVERALL RATING: 6/10
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