Tschudi Palace Entrance at Chan Chan Ruins in Trujillo, Peru
Entering the massive Tschudi Palace at Chan Chan Ruins in Trujillo, Peru

While sunburning my way through Northern Peru, I had the opportunity to stop by the famous archaeological site of Chan Chan located just a few miles outside the city of Trujillo.

Built by the kingdom of Chimú around 850 AD, Chan Chan was the largest Pre-Columbian city in South America before being conquered by the Inca Empire in 1570 AD. It was the imperial capital of the Chimor and was home to an estimated 30,000 people.

There are 4 main archaeological sites around Trujillo relating to the city of Chan Chan and the Chimú empire, but the most interesting was definitely the principal complex, known as the Tschudi Palace.

Walls of Tschudi Palace at Chan Chan Ruins in Trujillo, Peru
The incredibly detailed adobe walls of the Tschudi Palace

The adobe grounds were said to house 500 to 1,000 noble people and came complete with a huge courtyard, incredibly detailed wall designs, ceremonial tombs, guard posts and an impressive irrigation system.

Tschudi Palace at Chan Chan Ruins in Trujillo, Peru
A bored king waits for nobel tourists to capture the moment (check out the walls in the background)

Despite cheap tours running all the time, I just grabbed a taxi to the Tschudi Palace and spent an hour walking around the property solo, eavesdropping on tour guides and imagining what life was like. From the palace I grabbed a bus to the Museo de Sitio de Chan Chan (Chan Chan Museum) to learn more about the Chimor Kingdom and their territory.

Photos from Chan Chan Ruins in Trujillo, Peru
I am the Justin Beiber of ancient Peruvian archaeological sites.

Pretty impressive. If you’re passing through Trujillo, Peru, I’d stop and check it out.

Thanks Wikipedia for the free information ; )

My name is Gareth Leonard, a Marketing Director turned World Traveler with a passion for slow, meaningful travel. I have been traveling the world full-time for the past 9+ years and document it all on Instagram and YouTube. Come join me!

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