History of La Merced
It’s the capital of Chanchamayo district, province of Chanchamayo, located on the department of Junín. Before the Spanish conquest, the first inhabitants of La Merced were yaneshas and asháninkas. In 1635 the missionary Juan Jerónimo Jiménez arrived to this city and started to explore the virgin areas of the region. In September 24th 1869 José Manuel Pereira Palomino founded the town with the current name.
-La Merced has a tropical weather, typical of the Amazonia.
-It’s warm, humid and rainy the whole year.
-The warmest month is November, with a maximum temperature of 89 °F (32 °C) and a minimum of 57 °F (14 °C) in July.
How to get around La Merced?
In the city it’s common to get around in “mototaxi”, being the average price for route at 2,5 soles. By foot you can also get around, visiting the streets of the city.
Risks and cautions of La Merced
It’s recommended to bring mosquito repellent, sun loation and raincoat for the incessant rains of the region. You should also have light clothing for the day and warm clothes for the night if you travel to high areas.
It’s better to avoid booking the services of people around the airport and terrestrial terminals.
Around La Merced
Suspension bridge of Kimiri
Location: 2mi (3,5 kms) to the North-East of La Merced
Tourist attraction built in 1901 by the settlers with the purpose of communicating both river banks of the Chanchamayo river.
El Tirol Waterfall
Location: 9 mi (15 kms) to the South-East of La Merced, not to many kms to the East of San Ramón
Price: 1 sol
Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
It’s the most popular and visited waterfall of the Central Jungle. It has a fall of 25 meters of height. There are 3 waterfalls and crystalline waters.
Velo de la Novia Waterfall
Location: 31 mi (50 km) to the North-East of La Merced
Price: 1,50 soles
It’s a free waterfall of 50 meters of height. To get there you have to go through slippery trekkings, but once there you can swin in the wonderful waters.
Location: Marginal 22B highway, La Merced
Price: 6 soles for adults and 3 soles for children
It’s a place where you can observe animals, a little zoo. It’s specially interesting the butterflies raising. It’s a sample of the Chanchamayo fauna. It’s an interesting route to do with children.
Jardín Botánico El Perezoso
Location: at 9 mi (15 kms) from La Merced
In this botanical garden the visitors can get to know numerous plants that are exhibited, and between them “bejuco, ayahuasca, zarzaparrilla, cascarilla or aguaje”. However, there aren’t only plants, there you can see also Tarzan’s house, built in a tree; they raise snails and there is an exhibition of original stones of curious shapes.
Quebrada La Borgoña
Price: the tour costs about 30 soles per person
It’s an impressive waterfall of tremendous falls. There are trekkings organised to visit it and swim. It’s a route where someone gets easily wet, a circuit for adventurous, since you walk through a river and you climb little waterfalls. That’s why it’s called “Indiana Jones circuit”.
Price: 1 sol on the high season, free in low seasons
It’s an awesome waterfall, you must bring bathing suit and tennis shoes. Swim is allowed in its crystalline waters. You must beware, the path to go there is slippery.
There are many other trekkings on the surroundings of La Merced to waterfalls as El Tirol, Bayoz, Los Escalones de la Sirena, Las Tres Reinas, etc. Besides that, there are many other lakes to visit as Don Bosco and La Encantada.
Typical dishes of La Merced
Chipado de pescado
It’s a typical plate from the jungle prepared with “barbon” (a fish very common in the central jungle), seasoned with salt and “sachaculantro” (a plant spice). Then it’s rolled in banana leafs and served with chilly pepper and manioc.
Juanes de gallina de chacra
It’s a very popular plate, of complex preparation. The base is manioc with meat, but later they add other ingredients. Among them you have rice, smoked meat and mature bananas.
Carnero al palo
It’s mutton cooked grilled, pierced by a stick. It’s usually served with potatoes and vegetables.
Inchicapi de gallina con maní
The farm chicken is the main ingredient, with powdered peanut, corn, manioc and “sachaculantro” spice.
There are many beverages of the jungle and lots of them are made of the area fruits as the “chapo”, mature bananas.
It’s prepared with the palm tree fruit. It contains phytoestrogens, good for pregnant women.
Restaurants of La Merced
Shambari Campa Restaurante
Location: 389, Tarma street
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 11:45 p.m.
Price: an average of 20 soles
It’s a restaurant of typical dishes of the area with a gourmet touch, but they have good size and an excellent seasoning.
Location: 582, Arequipa street
Hours: from 12:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Price: from 7 to 24 soles
It’s located at 3 blocks from the Plaza de Armas. They serve typical food of the surroundings, but also meat and pasta plates.
Location: 589, Dos de Mayo street
Hours: unknown info.
The ideal place to rest after a tourism day and take a coffee with a delightful dessert.
Hotel El Edén Selva
Location: 347, Ancash street
Price: from 47 soles per person
It’s located at 50 meters from the main church of La Merced. The hotel has services as free wi-fi, restaurant, cable TV and private bathroom. It’s an option of good value for money.
Amazonia Siu Hostal
Location: 151, Junín street
Price: from 94 soles the double room
It has the services of free wi-fi, free private car park and restaurant. Reception desk 24 hours.
Chanchamayo Inn Hotel
Location: 308, Fray Gerónimo Jiménez street
Price: from 117 soles for a double room, breakfast included.
It’s a hotel good value for money. It has a pool and it’s well located. It also provides free wi-fi and car park among the services.
Presidente Selva Hotel
Location: Marginal highway (no number), Chunchuyacu
Price: from 324 soles for a double room, breakfast included
All the rooms have private bathroom with shower, air conditioning and cable TV. There is also a private car park.
Carnival of the Central Jungle
It’s an amazing festival where you will find troupes, allegorical cars and dance competitions. It’s typical to throw water buckets and ballons.
Touristic week of the Central Jungle
(Second weeks of June)
There are activities to select Miss Central Jungle on the whole province, typical dances and gastronomical and handmade fairs. Besides that, there are shows of adventure sports and guided visits.
(September, the 21st)
It’s a festival where Miss Tsinani is chosen; it means lady on their dialect, and it’s selected among representatives of the native communities ashaninkas and shipibas. It’s an event part of the patron saint festival.
Señor de los Milagros Procession
It’s one of the most crowded and well-known celebration of Peru, in honour of the Señor de los Milagros (the Miracle Sir).
Have a drink in La Merced
Location: Arica Street
It’s a perfect place to enjoy with some drinks and quench thirst caused by the hot of the jungle.
El Quijote Rústico
Location: 225, Arequipa Street
A place to have a drink with some delicious snacks.
Go out in La Merced
Kametska Café Rock
Location: 001, Av. Puente Herreria
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 9:00 p.m.
It’s a nightclub with very fun and varied music that also has karaoke. It’s a place where you should stop to have drinks and dance until early morning.
To get to this city you do it by land, taking the Carretera Central from Lima. It’s a travel that lasts about 8 hours, being 192 mi (310 kms). The company that covers this route is Turismo Raraz.
The cost of the bus travel is at 40 to 85 soles. The travel is usually made at night.