Located in the north of Peru, 213 km from Piura (5 ½ hours away by bus), Ayabaca is a province of the Piura Region, at the far western tip of the AndesCordillera. It shares borders with Ecuador in the north, the provinces of Morropon and Huancabamba in the south, and the province of Sullana in the west. Its surface is 5,360 km2 and its capital is the City ofAyabaca; the varied topography of this province provides it with a number of different micro-climates ranging from hot and dry to humid and very cold. The access route is along a paved road to thedistrict of Sullana, where one takes another paved road up to the city of La Palma at the mid-point of the trip, from which a cart track leads to Ayabaca.
It is estimated that the area was populatedsome 10,000 years ago by hunter-gatherers, and later was settled by different groups from the jungle and the "sierras". As from the 400-200 BC period, clear influences of Cupisnique, Chavin andAmazonica Cultures may be seen, this being the period when the Samango petroglyphs were carved.
Among its most representative attractions are the following:
The "Captive Lord of Ayabaca"
Some 200 yearsago, in 1751, the town of Ayabaca was founded at its present site in the high Cordillera, at the foot of Cerro "El Calvario", at 2,815 meters above sea level. Legend has it that the local parishpriest by the name of Garcia Guerrero decided to give the town its own patron saint. To this end, the priest and the parishioners ordered the carving of an effigy in nearby Ecuador, famous for itsreligious craftwork. A committee was named to make the trip and order the statue; according to the tale, on the way to Ecuador the committee met two gentlemen dressed in white who claimed to be sculptors andso impressed the committee members that they were immediately commissioned for the job. They consented to carry it out, providing that they were enclosed in a room no one was allowed to enter,...