Thanks to the specialized growing of these beautiful flowers, Moyobamba is known as the City of Orchids. One of the less explored destinations, with most variety of attractions, Moyobamba will make the traveler’s stay a true pleasure for the senses.
The route to Moyobamba
The city of Moyobamba is located at one half mile above sea level in the region of San Martin, which is a part of the Peruvian forest. Its name comes from the Quechuan word “Muyupampa,” which means circular plain, as it was built over the Valley of Altomayo, where geographical accidents known as gullies, a type of natural terraces from where one can see the dense forests that surround the city, have occurred.
To appreciate the moyobambinos’ charms up close, one must take a 55 minute flight from the Jorge Chávez airport in Lima to the Cadete FAP Guillermo Castillo Paredes airport in Tarapoto (check airline options such as Lan Perú). From there, continue the trip by land, over a paved road to Moyobamba, which lasts an average of two hours.
Wonders waiting to be discovered
One of Moyobamba’s main tourist attractions is the wide variety of world renowned orchids grown on its lands; over 2,500 varieties of it. They can be seen in more detail in the various nurseries and family-run hotels around the city. For example the Agroriente nursery (located in jiron Flores Guerra Nº 900), which provides travelers with the best specimens for exportation.
Another wonder of Moyobamba, which travelers must visit, are the Gera waterfalls, located almost 12 miles from the city, and considered to be one of the most beautiful natural resources in Peru. Because of the landscape’s unevenness, the falling water can be seen from three levels, the highest of which is at 1.3 yards. Additionally, the sun’s reflection allows the water to adopt different colors, which results in a unique sight.
Because the city is located in the Altomayo valley, what could be better than going to the Port of Tahuishco, the one with the most commercial activity and the best please to see the imposing Mayo River.
Each of these attractions can be visited through a tour organized by a travel agency, among which is Andean Adventure. It has travel programs from one day or more, which include lodging, food (breakfast, lunch and dinner), transportation, access to the attractions and constant presence of professional guides.
Speaking of lodgings, only five blocks from the Plaza de Armas (Main Square) is the Hotel Puerto Mirador, offering comfortable bungalows, bar, restaurant, internet and conference room in addition to a patio with big pools (one for adults, one for kids) from where the Mayo river can be seen.
Another interesting option is the Hotel Marco Antonio (located in jirón Pedro Canga 488), which in addition to the usual amenities, offers its guests the option to take a boat tour through the Reserva de Tingada, the highest wetland ecosystem in Peru. You do need to coordinate this tour in advance with the travel agency.
The delicious foods of Moyobamba includes dishes like the Avispajuane (ground pork meat wrapped in a ball of green rice, the Tacacho con Cecina (fried flattened plantain with smoked pork meat), and the Inchicapi (soup with a base of ground peanut). One of the best places to taste these dishes is El Platanal, located in jirón Manuel del Águila 361, a few blocks from the main square.
And for those who would rather enjoy something more familiar, you can go to Emilio’s Chef Burger (on the intersection of Pedro Pascasio and Veinte de Abril streets), and eat their delicious hamburgers with the special moyobabina’s seasoning.