Máncora, Peru. 4th stop Saga South America
I have 3 photos of Máncora, a shame but you will see why I only have 3. But everything begins with the bus leaving at night from Cuenca (1st stop) and it was going fast, that’s how irresponsible drivers can be. A friend from the US was sitting next to me and he said “this guy means business”. Fortunately, as soon as the driver had the intention of going fast, a lady sitting in the front told him, with an upset voice, to go slowly and also told him where he could go because he was acting stupid. If this happens to you, don’t be afraid to talk to the driver, there are too many accidents on these trips, talking can save your life. Getting off topic, a few days before my trip to Machu Picchu, a bus fell off the same cliff that my bus passed, more than 30 people died, the driver was drunk. Choose your transportation and driver carefully.
Returning to the topic, we went through migration (don’t’ forget your ID or passport, people do forget) and we continued until we reached Máncora at dawn, it seems to me that it was about a 6 or 8 hour journey. I separated from the group and went to the Loki Hostel, it was the last time I ever saw them. I arrived too early to the hostel, they wouldn’t let me check in and I had to sleep in the waiting room. That was not cool, they could have let me into my room, but anyways I still fell asleep.
If you go to Máncora and want to relax then I would recommend you not to go to Loki Hostel. It is a very cool place, it has a swimming pool, hammocks, ping pong and beer pong, it is in front of the beach and they give you a wristband so you can consume whatever you want, then you pay for everything. It’s not a place to relax because it has a bar inside and every day there is something to do, there are parties and after parties in other places as well. I was there for 4 nights and only a few times did I go out to the beach. In fact, I don’t think I even went into the sea, and I know that Máncora has other benefits and things to do like surfing, but I didn’t experience them. I will have to go back.
In any case, I had an incredible time. And I’ll quickly tell you how it went down: the Australian friend I met in Cuenca came out of nowhere one day and we had a few cold ones while playing ping pong. Later, some Peruvians arrived and challenged us to some ping pong games, we bet some beers and we kicked their asses, then we had some more beers. Little by little the group got bigger. My roommates arrived, one from England and one from Switzerland, good people. My Australian friend had a fight with the English girl. Later, a group of German men and women, from Ireland and the USA, joined. We all went to the bar and had a few shots before going to an after party. I couldn’t film how they make the drinks but the idea is that throughout the bar they put a row of shots on a glass with alcohol, then they make the shots fall into the glass as if it were dominoes and then you drink, and then they charge you to your tab. I think I have a video of that but in the Loki of Cusco, you’ll see that soon enough, we’re almost there.
So, 3 out of 4 nights were like this. I remember that on the 2nd day a Chilean arrived and then a German (by the way, these rooms are shared by 8 to 16 people, they are bunk beds, it is cheaper, made for backpackers). I’m sending greetings now to my Chilean friend if you are reading this, to Francisco, a pilot who came on vacation for 2 weeks and his final destination was Montañita. With him and the roommates we bought a pisco bottle (Franciso said that pisco is originally from Chile, Peruvians will say otherwise) and filled them into empty water bottles to take them back to the hostel (they don’t let you bring any alcohol in the Loki, in fact, they check your bags when you check in). After a while the new German roommate arrived, whom we integrated into the group and we had the pisco. The German was inspired and told us “those who say that they cannot travel is because they really do not want to travel, those who say that they can only travel a few days because they don’t have more money to continue then those people really do not want to travel anymore, because if you want to travel you will find dozens of ways to do it without spending money”. The translation is lost a bit, I don’t know if his words were exactly like that, I put some of mine as well, but in any case the moral was that: if you want to travel for a consecutive long time, you will achieve it one way or another (legally of course) and money is not a limiter, although surely there are others (such as children). And it’s true, you can travel without money, I’ll tell you how later in other blogs.
After staying 4 nights in Máncora at the Loki I decided I had to go. My wallet took a hit and I was not really exploring anything else, besides, my travel objective was not to party, although the party was great. And as I told you, I got to know very little about the area, in fact, I have 3 photos of the beach and all 3 I took from the window of my room (the same thing happened to me in La Paz in the Loki Hostel, sometimes you just don’t learn). Luckily, some friends from my parents and uncles lived in Lima, so they told me I could stay with them for a few days. I bought a bus ticket and went to Lima, a trip of almost 1 day. The ticket was expensive, but it was expensive because I went on a fancy bus with Wifi. The company’s name was Cruz del Sur if I recall correctly. And I recommend that for long trips, you spend a little more on buses like this because they have speed limits, they have different drivers switching every certain hours for the same trip and it has Wifi, and it is worth spending more for your safety and security.
- If you go to Máncora and want to party, stay at the Loki Hostel, if you don’t want to party, don’t go there. Or go some nights to Loki and other nights to a quieter place
- If you travel alone, the best way to meet people is if you stay in a shared room. You will also meet people in the hostel bar. I would say that 95% of backpackers travel alone so most of them are nice, at first at least
- If you are traveling for several weeks or months in South America, set a time limit in Máncora, your money can go quickly there
- Always carry a bottle of water, not a plastic bottle
- There are some places around the hostel that sell tasty ceviches, they are drier than Ecuadorians, it’s worth it