I first heard that Peru has 30 out of 32 world climates in Cusco proper earlier than I began mountaineering the Inca Path. I hadn’t explored a lot but, however it made sense contemplating there are a number of mountain ranges, the Amazon jungle, a pleasant lengthy stretch of shoreline, and the sand dunes of Huacachina all in Peru.
Now that I’ve spent a month in Peru I can affirm, this nation has extra climates and microclimates than virtually anyplace else I’ve been. That makes for some various journey choices, in addition to actions, and to be sincere, a considerably difficult packing listing.
All that apart, Huacachina was a spotlight for me, principally as a result of deserts and dunes are stunning and mashing down them on a sand board or dune buggy had me smiling from ear to ear. The next are among the greatest issues to do plus a normal information to Huacachina:
Huacachina is situated about 5 hours south of Lima down a desolate stretch of shoreline. Until taking personal transport, like we did on my BMTM Adventures tour, or if going with Peru Hop (which I actually assume is overpriced), you’ll must catch a bus to Ica first. That is attainable from each Lima and Cusco.
As soon as in Ica, you’ll must take a taxi to Huacachina. It’s a detailed drive and shouldn’t value greater than 10-12 soles. You probably have a neighborhood SIM, you can too examine for automobiles on Uber.
Sundown and dawn
One of the best time of day to benefit from the dunes is at dawn and sundown. We arrived in Huacachina round 3pm and have been on the dunes by golden hour.
Dawn can be a unbelievable time to be out on the dunes. Take a headlamp alongside and head out to the dunes behind the oasis and watch the dawn over Ica to light up the dunes.
Sand boarding, sledding, and dune buggy rides
As you’ll be able to see from the photograph above, Huacachina is tiny. The city itself shouldn’t be the draw, it’s the dunes!
Nearly everybody on the town will attempt to promote you a dune buggy and sandboarding tour. All of them go to the identical place, so go together with no matter worth and firm feels good to you.
The buggy trip is likely one of the greatest elements, each due to the joys of racing down the dunes, and the truth that it means you don’t should climb the dune as a way to sand board down it. The buggies all run on a one-way monitor, so even when it looks like your driver is gunning ahead full pace, you don’t want to fret a few buggy coming again at you within the different course.
Sand boarding, very like snowboarding, includes getting fitted for boots and strapping a board to your toes. It may be harmful because the dunes are steep. I used to be somewhat shocked as nicely that we weren’t provided helmets like I had been in Namibia. That mentioned, I discover sand to be a lot softer than snow. For those who take pleasure in snowboarding, you then’ll love sandboarding too.
If that’s not your pace, you can too sled down in your abdomen, face first. This jogged my memory lots of air boarding in the snow. You need to use your toes behind you as brakes when you’re going too quick for consolation.
Scenic flights over the Nazca Strains, a UNESCO World Heritage Web site, are additionally closely promoted in Huacachina. Nearly anyplace you’ll be able to ebook actions will supply flights to the Nazca Strains as nicely.
There are over 70 designs etched into the earth, starting from easy geometric shapes to extra complicated animals and and human figures. They have been created by the Nazca tradition between 500 BC and 500 AD and the biggest of them are as much as 1200 toes lengthy! Given the sheer dimension, they’re greatest seen from the air.
From Huacachina, the going fee is round $90 USD and the tour takes not less than 6 hours, 4 of that are spent driving to and again from Nazca. Convey money as on the time of this writing, the ATMs don’t all the time work in Huacachina and a few or the entire charge for the flight have to be paid in money.
The place to remain
As talked about beforehand, Huacachina is tiny. There aren’t a ton of choices, however my group and I loved our keep at Hotel El Huacachinero. It’s situated proper on the town and has a pleasant pool, which is welcome on these sizzling days out within the desert.
For a extra economical possibility, try Wild Olive Guest House throughout the road. Each are well-positioned for an early morning dune climb!
Peru, I by no means would have guessed that I’d be climbing in mountains with snow falling down at some point, using a ship down a river the following, and shaking sand out of my sneakers all in the identical week.
You probably have an opportunity to make it to Huacachina, do it. It’s well worth the time within the automobile or bus for this attractive desert expertise.