A typical Sunday in Peru revolves around time spent with family. You will find most stores are closed as the people rest over a large almuerzo lunch, and spend the afternoon around the table which is spread with traditional Peruvian staples such as papa a la huacaina, ají de gallina, ocupa, and ceviche.
Each Sunday, I accompany Mariale as she and her family make their way to her grandmothers house. There, we spend the afternoon in conversation over ice cold Chicha Morada, Inca Cola, and a smörgåsbord of home cooked dishes.
This Sunday, it was decided we would instead have lunch ‘en el campo’ of Simbal.
We left around 11 am and drove thirty minutes outside of the city to a resort in Simbal an area in the flood planes of the Moche River. On our way, we passed the Huaca de la Sol y de la Luna. The ancient ruins of the people who first developed complex canals which carried water from the river that saturated the land over 1000 years ago. The mountains which loom over the flood planes serve as a reminder that without the river, this land would be barren and inhabitable.
As we exited the highway, we hit a dirt road and began to climb the jagged path to the resort which sits in the middle of La Valle Catalina. There, we hopped out and enjoyed the afternoon exploring the grounds of Casa Cumbray.
I personally recommend this resort as a place to stay for those looking for a quick trip out of the city. There are plenty of things to do and a well equipped staff that will help with any need. There are about 20 rooms available which sit in a stair step that climbs to the top of the hillside. Once at the top, you will find the honeymoon suite that sits on top of the crest of the hillside and provides a great view of the Valle.
Descending the stairs from the rooms, there is a quaint courtyard, the pool sits in the middle. The restaurant is to the left and the ‘cine’ to the right. The Cine features films every night from a projector.
Past the pool, you can descend into the flood plane. There, you will find a soccer field, a volleyball court, and a jungle gym for children. There are also stables and chicken coops where you can pet the Caballos de Paso, and cluck with the Turkeys and Gallos.
We arrived and sat by the pool enjoying the company and great view. As the waitress approached us, she asked what time we would like to eat and then listed off the menu. The moment she mentioned Cuy Guinea Pig, she needed say no more. Fried Cuy was what everyone had come for.