arapoto is a beautiful town located between the valleys of the Cumbaza and Shilcayo rivers, in the province of San Martin, Department of that name. Its climate is warm and
dry in summer and wet in the rainy season, with a temperature that runs between 28 and 34°C. Tarapoto plays a vital part in communications between villages: it is the hub of road and air networks that weave between the north Sierra and Coast, and eastern Peru.
Known as the City of Palms, Tarapotohas a busy, modern airport, with the principal airlines making daily arrivals, as well as smaller planes that come from distant villages. River access is by the Huallaga river and its tributaries.
A local legend tells of the birth of this mysterious town. On the arrival of the Spaniards, the native Cumbazas established in the Tarapoto
valley were exterminated by the invaders. Two children, a girl and a boy, survived the massacre. The god Apu (benefactor of the region) took pity on them and changed the boy into a bull and the girl into a butterfly. However, they were so sad they could not stop crying. The tears of the bull were transformed into the Shilcayo river. The butterfly had a worse fate: on being shot down by harquebus, she was changed into Lake Suchiche, which eventually dried up.
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