Today explore some of the highlights of southern Peru on an adventure that takes you from penguin dotted islands, to rolling desert sand dunes.
Paracas and Ica Full Day Adventure
Beginning with a 3:30am pick-up, you will take a 3.5 hour bus ride down the Peruvian coast for a 7:00am arrival to the small seaside town of Paracas. The only national reserve on the Peruvian coast, Paracas is a gorgeous escape known for its wind carved cliffs, diverse marine life, and ancient history. Arriving early means you have the chance to embark on a boat tour of the famed Ballestas Islands, and Paracas Bay.
The first stop on your boat ride will be the enigmatic Candelabro – a mysterious drawing etched into the sand on the side of Paracas peninsula. From the sea you will have a perfect view of the 180m / 590ft tall carving, the significance of which is unknown to this day. After hearing some of the theories on what the Candelabro represents and how it was created, continue your ride to the Ballestas Islands. A must-visit stop on any trip to the south, this cluster of impressive rocks is home to some of Peru’s most impressive sea birds such as pelicans, Peruvian boobies, and Humboldt penguins. There is also a friendly colony of seals and sea lions that sun themselves on the rocks and swim through the wind carved tunnels that give the islands their iconic silhouette.
When you’re back on shore, you will board the bus and continue to your next stop, Huacachina. About a one hour drive away, make sure to peek out the window and watch as the landscape shifts dramatically from coastal cliffs to spectacular sand dunes. The Huacachina lagoon will seem to appear out of nowhere, a small green oasis amidst vast desert, and here you will begin the next adventure. Board four-wheel sand buggies for a thrilling ride through the sloping dunes. Experienced drivers will take you on a natural roller coaster ride that provides stunning views of golden mountains as far as the eye can see. During the trip you can even gear up and try to sand board down the steep dunes!
The final stop of the day will be at one of the many bodegas in the region that produce Peru’s national spirit of Pisco. Ica is the heart of Peru’s wine and Pisco industry, and you will be able to see first hand how producers create this hard liquor from Peruvian grapes. Tour Bodega Catador, and learn the intricate process of artisan Pisco production as well as the long history they have making some of the finest Piscos in Peru. Along the way you can taste many varieties of the spirit, before boarding the bust for the relaxing return journey to Lima. You will arrive at approximately 10:00pm.
This tour departs from Lima
Average Temperature: 23° C / 74° F
At one of the restaurants we recommend, there is a pool that guests can use
Private guide and transportation
Entrance fee to Paracas National Reserve and all mentioned excursions
Meals, tips or personal expenses
For a comfortable trip, we recommend you bring:
- Athletic clothes
- Bathing suit, towel, and sandals
- Snacks for the 4 hour bus rides to and from Ica
- Sunscreen (at least SPF 30), even if it is overcast
- Hat or cap
- Athletic shoes