Fresh seafood, tourists, cocktails, coconuts and beach, welcome to the beautiful seaside town that is Mancora.
We’ve arrived, now the party can start
For buses in South America we’d pretty much hit the jackpot with the company ‘Cruz Del Sur’. Although the drivers sometimes appear to forget there are passengers, driving a little erratically now and then, the buses were extremely comfortable and usually you get fed on them. The morning of our arrival into Mancora, we were fed coffee (not even the instant type! But filled with five teaspoons of sugar), a ham and cheese bread roll, a muffin and a piece of fruit.
When we got to the bus station the door had barely opened before we were bombarded with a crowd of locals trying to get us onto their tuk-tuk taxis and a tour. Barely able to step onto the ground, trying to find our passports and bags, and busting for the toilet, we were dragged onto some guy’s tuk-tuk and taken to our hostel. There was a little bit of sensory overload happening and the lack of sleep on the bus didn’t go well with it all.
Once we’d gotten to the hostel we were warmly welcomed by Diego and Helena who checked us in and came straight over with a beer, telling us to sit down, relax and enjoy Mancora. What a way to arrive! Much calmer and welcoming than the onslaught of yelling taxi drivers we’d originally been greeted with.
A number of people have said to us, “but your travelling, your always on holidays”, this is somewhat true; however being constantly on the move and needing to stick to a timetable can be stressful and tiring, but fun. For this reason, we decided that our time in Mancora was going to be a little less trying to catch the public transport around to see all of the local sights, and a little more sitting on the beach, relaxing and taking life at a more reasonable pace.
How to do this? Go and find a restaurant down near the water, set yourself up under one of their umbrellas and then let the staff do the rest. We sat in our little piece of paradise, under the umbrella, for most of the day, swimming, drinking a couple of cold beers and eating some of the freshest fish we’ve had so far on this trip.
All of the seafood
For dinner, Helena at the hostel recommended we go to a place called ‘Los Delfines’ (The Dolphins) as it had a beautiful view of the sunset and the food wouldn’t disappoint. Taking on board this advice we toddled into the shady looking restaurant, which had a tangle of live power lines hanging from the front of it, and sat ourselves down to watch another perfect Peruvian sunset.
So dinner was some of the best food we had experienced in Peru, fresh seafood is always a winner. James had “pescado a lo macho” which he had been looking at having for a while. He thought it was spicy fish, but was actually fish in seafood sauce. Dee had Parihuela, which is a seafood soup, containing half a crab, a side of fish and more.
More holidays, more cocktails and more seafood… surprise?
So for the rest of our stay in Mancora, we pretty much relaxed on the beach, enjoyed barbecued seafood and a lot of sun. Unlike other places in South America, James remembered to put sunscreen on the back of his hands, and Dee remembered to put on sunscreen full stop. Amazingly even in such a small town we still managed to get ourselves lost. We wandered for a walk to what was supposed to be a beautiful secluded beach at the other end of the town, past the fisherman’s wharf and near all of the rich houses, having walked for two hours and still not finding this beautiful beach we retired back to the main beachfront and chilled out.
We enjoyed a few places along the beach, including the Wawa bar and their comfortable couches, cheap Pisco and Happy “Hour” cocktails, happy hour starts at 9am and finishes at 10pm. While settling in for dinner on one of our evenings, one of the locals turned up downstairs with a giant snake in a bag and threw it on one of the restaurant owners; this caused quite a commotion and led to quite a fair amount of laughter.
After a beautiful few days in Mancora it was time for us to say goodbye to Peru, we needed to find a money exchange (which we failed at), and get ourselves back to the bus station. Riding in the last of the pimped up tuk-tuks for a while we got ourselves on the bus and prepared for another crazy road, along with another border crossing.
Next stop Ecuador.
Go see all the photos from Mancora