Starting in El Alto, there is a spectacle that always strikes me as kind of surreal. After leaving that large plain, where the oil wells painted in outlandish colors inundate the landscape, there begins a steep descent of some five kilometers to Cabo Blanco, with all immensity of the ocean in front of me. In that sea, there are various platforms and fishing boats, looking like metallic mushrooms, which make this the stretch of the Peruvian coastline where they extract the most black gold. Everything seems stuck in time, in the golden age of the 1950s, when Cabo Blanco was the world Mecca for sports fishing, and it hosted its mythic Cabo Blanco Fishing Club, currently abandoned.
Marilyn Monroe, Paul Newman, Cantinflas, James Stewart, Lucía Bosé (the mother of the Spanish singer and actor Miguel Bosé), Humphrey Bogart, Rockefeller and, most famously of all, Ernest Hemingway, are among those who passed through this place. The latter is the most remembered of all, perhaps because of the photographs that decorate the walls of Cabo Blanco.
Hemingway resided in this tiny town to write part of his novella, The Old Man and the Sea, for which he won a Pulitzer Prize (1953), in addition to fishing for black marlin, swordfish, turbot, tuna and sailfish, between bottles of whisky. The sea near Cabo Blanco has a peculiarity that makes it unique in the world. Here, two great currents, El Niño and the Humboldt, meet, elevating the richness of the sea life. It also ensures that the water is neither cold nor warm, meaning that those marine resources are available year-round.
According to many surfers, Cabo Blanco has one of the best waves in Peru, a left-hand break, a wave that reaches four meters in height and demands a certain level of experience so as not to end up crashed on the rocks. This wave is joined by another, at the southern end of the beach, whose name says it all: Panic Point.
To the north and all along the coast of El Ñuro, there are different real estate projects that will include prívate homes and hotels, such as the one being designed by Inkaterra, which owns a large piece of land in Cabo Blanco. It plans to build a lodge that will revive the experiences that the “high society” lived sixty years ago, with the focus on sustainability and conservation that this Peruvian chain always brings to its products.
Cover photo: alobos life/flickr
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