I’ve been living in Tarapoto for just over one year. The time has passed quickly, although when I think back to my first few days here it seems like a lifetime ago. My first impressions of this town were not great to be honest – I certainly didn’t think I’d end up living here. However, Tarapoto wrapped me up within a few days, charming me with its relaxed pace, its quirks and eccentricities.
Tarapotinos and Living in Peru
As for the people, well, I have to say that I have a lot of respect and affection for the Tarapotinos. I’ll always be a foreigner here, a gringo, there’s no escaping that.
But I don’t feel too much like an outsider here; there’s a real community spirit in the area where I live, and nearly everyone is willing to help me out, offer advice and answer my often stupid questions.
My neighbours are all really friendly; I walk to the local shop most days, say hello to the lady who sits on the corner selling aguaje, buy my platano verde from the señora who always says “hola gringito”, chat about football with the kids that kick a ball about in the street. People here are friendly and respectful. I like that.
Is Tarapoto, Peru a Good Place to Live?
I feel at home here in Tarapoto; I haven’t felt homesick at all, although there are things that I miss about the UK. I miss good bacon. I miss the atmosphere of traditional British pubs. I sometimes miss the stupidity and imagination of distinctly British humour. And, I have to admit, I miss my family and friends at times. However, not even the temptation of a full English breakfast could lure me back to a life in the UK. I’d like to be able to go home once or twice each year, but otherwise I’m perfectly happy right here. And who needs bacon anyway when you have cecina?
I won’t ramble on any more about my own life. I just thought I’d mark my one year anniversary with a little blog post. I have to go to Lima tomorrow to finish off some official business; when I’m done in the big city I can return to Tarapoto, settle back down, relax, write some more and carry on with my life in this beautiful part of Peru.
I was recently in Tarapoto, is the best place to stay and have a happy life… Cecina like breakfast!!… I love Tarapoto… I would like to have read your blog before travel… Greetings!
look at my photos on facebook 🙂
I was also recently in Tarapoto for a week or so doing a medical mission trip!!!I loved it..I am coming back in mid-September again for a week. I met a Peruvian down there on my trip…..loved it…I also enjoyed your blog!!!
Thanks Cari, I’m glad you like the blog. It’s a bit rough around the edges, but I have fun writing it. Hopefully I’ll have a few more posts written before you come back in September!
I’m in Tarapoto right now for my summer vacation and this is the third time in four year, after I’ve met my Peruvian Tarapotina girfriend in Italy, where actually I live.
I completely agree with what you have written and now are months that I dream to find a way to live here.
It would be great to speak directly with you and you’d be my first other “gringo” I speak with since I’m visiting Tarapoto in this years 🙂
So, waiting for your answer, CIAO 😉
Hi Dario, I’ve sent you an email. Let me know here if you don’t receive it.
I went to Tarapoto for 1 of my summer breaks and it was soo hot but i would prefer california *WAY* more….
Sabes, es bueno leer tu blog, estoy soñando con mudarme a Tarapoto, quiero dejar Lima e ir allá para comenzar un negocio de souvenirs, esa es mi especialidad, artesania peruana, tengo dos niños y un esposo muy acostumbrado a la ciudad, jjejeje, pequeño inconveniente quisiera ir en un viaje de reconocimiento primero.
Solo espero que mi sueño se haga realidad y darle a mis hijos una vida de comunidad y de naturaleza.
Bye, be well!!
Gracias Aracely! Tarapoto es una ciudad muy agradable y un buen lugar para los niños.
Thanks for posting all of the information on your blog! Im on my last stretch of interviews right now to travel to Tarapoto and work on Sustainable Development with a local NGO. Im excited to get my journey started! It would be nice to stay in touch and hear a little bit more about the city, the people, the life there, as I would be living there from May-July/August 2012.
Greetings from Ottawa, Canada!
Hi Taylor! Sounds like a good project. Feel free to contact me using the contact page when you arrive (or before!). Maybe we could get together for a drink sometime.
I’m an American living in Tarapoto–and have since April 2009—- I too like Tarapoto living, and am still adjusting to life here— I’d be open for drinks too, should I be invited…… Just amongst us Gringos…… —cheers
Enjoyed your blog and your comments about Tarapoto. Recently I met with a Tarapotino – who studied in Sweden and is in the process of setting up some business there. In talking with him over lunch, he mentioned about quality of life and the beauty of the city and its surroundings and good opportunities to start a business. Now, he sold me on visiting Tarapoto and maybe considering a place to retire to in the future. My wife Carmen and I are thinking of visiting this city next year. What would you recommend for a place to stay, say for few months to determine if it is the place for us? What the lodging cost would be? Thanks for your response.
Hi Francisco. If you want to stay for a few months, it’s probably worth staying in a hotel for a few days while looking for a place to rent. Most people are happy to rent an apartment for just a couple of months (S/.500 to S/.800 per month is reasonable). Finding a place is a matter of walking around and looking, or asking the locals. Feel free to send me an email through the contact page before you arrive and I’ll see what I can find.
Hello Tony! I wonder if you are still living in Tarapoto! i am from Arequipa, but soon i´m moving to Tarapoto, well an hour from there to a farm, i am a biologist and i have some projects for those lands 🙂 it would be great if we could write each other so i can get some advice… muchos saludos y muchas gracias!
Hi Lizette. Yes, I’m still in Tarapoto — when will you be here? Feel free to contact me again through the contact form on this blog, or through the TarapotoLife Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/tarapotolife). I’d be happy to answer any questions you might have. Cheers, Tony.
Hi Tony, It’s official! I’m now a resident of Tarapoto. After years of returning again and again to this lovely area, we finally bit the bullet & here we are. Enjoying your blog, keep up the good work! All the best, Ben
hello tony i will be coming to tarapoto on march first in one week looking forward to meet with you…thanks
Hi Ray J. You can normally find me at Huascar Bar (https://www.facebook.com/huascarbar/) on Friday or Saturday night. Come along for a drink if you want. Cheers, Tony.
Tony! I’m coming over from Ireland fir a while. Are you still around??? I’m. There from 11th March on.
Hi Claire. Yes, I’m still around. Feel free to send me a message using the contact form when you get here, or through the Facebook page. Cheers, Tony.
Hello, I am a french lady coming next May for three months in Peru. I registered with workaway to go stay and help with interesting projects around the amazonian jungle. I ll pass by Tarapoto and would like to meet up for a drink, some advice … I m preparing and need advice as to how to get from one place to another without danger of being mugged on the way. I Intend to go around Tarapoto but may have to go to pucallpa, iquitos.