Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino

Cultures > Arid North > Chinchorro

Environment and Location

The Chinchorro people inhabited the Pacific coast of southern Peru and northern Chile, from what the present-day port of Ilo to Antofagasta. Though the land here is extremely arid, the region is abundant in marine resources due to the cold Humboldt Current. The small valleys that cross the land to the sea bring freshwater to this desert coast, as well as animal and plant species that provided sustenance to these ancient peoples. The Chinchorro people were called after the beach of the same name near Arica, Chile, where evidence of their culture was first found.