2019 Fieldwork season

This season will focus on site mapping, followed by archaeological excavation in three main areas of the site: the main church, the Mercedary monastery and the household area surrounding the plaza. The main objective of the 2019 season will be understanding the economic activities that characterized daily life at San Miguel de Piura, as well as the commerce and trade networks stablished with surrounding local communities and other far away Spanish colonies.

Laboratory work will take place in a nearby household, fully equipped to host the students during the day. During laboratory sessions, students will learn how to identify and classify archaeological remains. Likewise, we will explore the manufacturing process, chronology, and stylistic features of several materials such as pottery, glazed ware and metal artifacts.

Learn about Historical Andean archaeology, excavation and laboratory methods by digging in the first Spanish town founded in Peru

Student Guidelines

About the Program

The Universidad de Piura, one of the leading research institutions in the Peruvian North Coast, announces the first season of the archaeological field school “San Miguel de Piura, first Spanish foundation in Peru (1534 d.C.)”. Fieldwork will take place at the archaeological site of San Miguel de Piura, located in the Morropon province, La Matanza district, in the northern city of Piura. Our field school has a strong research background since it derives from the ongoing research project that the Universidad de Piura, the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid and the Municipalidad Distrital de La Matanza have been conducting in San Miguel de Piura since 1999, under the autorization of the Ministry of Culture.

This academic program offers personalized training in archaeological fieldwork in historical contexts and introduces students with the most important methods and concepts of archaeological fieldwork and laboratory analysis. Specifically, training will include survey, excavation, architectural and laboratory analysis. In this way, students will be able to understand the processes behind the settlement planning of San Miguel and the history of its occupants. Likewise, students will have hands on experience in preservation and analysis of amazingly well-preserved botanical remains, ceramics, textiles, lithics, animal and human bones, among others.

Additionally, workshops on a variety of subjects will be carried out each weekend to complement the training, which will include visits to the most representative touristic sites and traditional communities in Piura.

Our program offers academic credits (*), depending on each student’s request, which can be submitted to the student’s home institution.

Download Syllabus

Room and board

The Region’s capital, the city of Piura, is only one and a half hour away from the site location and has supermarkets, ATMs, movie theaters, hotels as well as many touristic sites to visit.  Students will spend the nights and weekends on a family household located fifteen minutes away from the site, in Morropón district, where they will have access to internet, water, TV, electricity, local hospital, stores, and restaurants.  During the day, the team will work and rest in a family household two blocks away from the site. Meals will be provided every day except for Sundays, when our weekly fieldtrips are scheduled.


About Piura content.

What to bring

Field Supplies

  1. Trowel (this ones are the best)
  2. Sun block
  3. Chapstick
  4. Bug repellent
  5. Aloe vera (for sunburn)
  6. Water bottle (2)
  7. Comfortable clothing for the field that will also protect you from the sun
  8. Sunglasses for the field
  9. Large hat (to protect your head from the heat!)
  10. Medium size backpack
  11. Work gloves
  12. Hiking boots and breathable hiking socks
  13. Pocket knife
  14. Pencil case

Everyday Items

  1. Medicine (you can buy it here unless it requires a prescription)
  2. Bath towel
  3. Bathing suit (optional)
  4. AC adapter (Peru uses 220V)

Suggestions for Entertainment

  1. Laptop
  2. Movies (you can buy them here)
  3. iPod (MP3 player) (not allowed in the field)
  4. Board games or cards

Download list

Project location


02 Jun


28 Jun
San Miguel de Piura, Piura.

July 01 to 26