Be Amazed with the Vastness and Strangeness of Chan Chan City

Museo Chan Chan

Peru attracts a number of foreign tourists and history enthusiasts from across the world to witness its rich historical background. Chan Chan city is one of the most significant archaeological sites worth a visit. The vast historical city of Chan Chan located near Trujillo is spread over an area of nine square mile. In its heyday in 15th century, Chan Chan served as the capital city of Chimu civilization that lasted from 850 AD to 1470 AD.

It was the largest adobe city in the world during that time. The expanse of the city is evident in its massive structures with walls even 30 feet high at some places. There are around ten thousand such structures with maze of passageways and streets. Palaces and temples with long friezes depicting animal and religious figures convey the significance of property.


The nine Royal Compounds that define Chan Chan city were built each by a succeeding king. It is clearly indicative of a strict political and social strategy of the Chimu civilization. Each compound had a platform where king was buried along with his women and treasure. The city accumulated a lot of treasure holding crocks of gold but after Spanish conquest in 15th century much of its treasure was lost. The Royal Compound also known as Tschudi Palace has been partially restored and is open to visitors. The compound houses an interesting structure called Sanctuary whose walls are textured with fishing nets.


Chan Chan Museum in the vicinity has a fascinating collection of pottery and artifacts from the deserted city. The diverse original artifacts include wooden idols, ceramic, metal objects, building supplies like adobes, sun dried mud bricks etc. Chan Chan though received scanty rainfall; it always had enough water for agriculture owing to its well-connected irrigation network. The museum displays irrigation techniques of the civilization and their agricultural practices. Multimedia room with sound and light effects effectively describe Chimu history and their way of life.

Today, Chan Chan is an endangered site owing to fast deterioration of adobe city caused by heavy rainfall. Though the restoration work has mitigated the impact of rainfall, it still remains susceptible to damage caused by climate change.

Contact today to find out how Karikuy can integrate Chan Chan city into your customized tour.

Image 1: By uranio (Luís) –, CC BY-SA 2.0

Image 2: Yan-Di Chang

Image 3: Kevstan

Jude C

I am a travel enthusiast who has closely worked with different communities. My interests range from alternative rock to English literature. I also happen to love cats a lot.

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