Things to do in Huacachina, magical oasis

Things to do in Huacachina, magical oasis

Huacachina is a little oasis in the middle of the Peruvian desert, south of Lima. This little village looks like you would imagine that desert oasis. A palm trees around a little lake, dunes all around it. I didn’t believe that place like this even exists so I really wanted to visit it. Truth is, it is such a small village, that there aren’t too many things to do in Huacachina. I spend there two days, mainly because I wanted to rest up and chill a little bit after my incident with the hotel scam.

Things to do in Huacachina

Things to do in Huacachina
Cross I found when Hiking the dune in Huacachina

Essentially there are just a couple of things to do, and they might not be for everyone. So if you are planning to visit this little oasis in the middle of massive Peruvian dessert, don’t expect to spend a week here, more like a day, maybe two.

Hike in the dunes

Before visiting Peru as solo female traveler

There is a really big dune just above of Huacachina. If you like hiking or good views, it takes only about half an hour till hour to hike it. Depends how good hiker you are. But it is not too difficult, just count that you will be walking in sand, so the terrain is slightly more difficult to walk in. If you are visiting Peru in their wintertime (June-August), I would recommend to hike it after 10 o’clock, when it finally starting to be better weather. If this would be Africa, it might be very dangerous to hike somewhere in the midday. But here you might get nicely warm.

From the top of the dune, you will get an amazing view of Huacachina. Sadly you will also see the village of poorer Peruvian, which is located just behind this dune. But I guess that just belong to the reality of traveling.

If you decide not to come here during the day, the sunset is really stunning from here. But if you decide to be here for the sunset, take something warmer with you because once the sun is down it is getting really chilly.

Buggy tour

Sunset in desert

This is a super popular thing to do. It cost about 30 soles, you get to be in the middle of the desert with very adrenalin driving. It is really fun and almost every hotel here offers the drive. I went for the sunset drive which took about two hours. It was about an hour and a half of fun and half an hour staring at the sunset. This really belongs to one of the most popular things to do in Huacachina.

The clothes are the key here. In the middle of the day, you are probably fine with shorts, later than that, remember to take something to keep you warm.

Some tours also offer sandboarding, which is really fun, but just count that you will have sand everywhere. Also, I used to picture sand boarding as a sitting on a board and sliding down. Well, the driver here had a different opinion and basically make us lie on the board, which was actually really exciting, but it is not for everyone, some people quit before doing it. The dunes were just too steep. But it is not dangerous at all.

Sandboarding

The sandboarding is not part of only the buggy tour. In fact, if you want, you can rent a board in the village for a different amount of time and just do it your self anywhere you want. And there is a lot of dunes around Huacachina, so it is easy to spend the whole afternoon like this.

Chill around the lake

Huacachina oasis in Peru
The good thing to know before visiting Peru is that you can visit all kinds of nature

Personally, I feel like this was one of the most beautiful places to chill. Just take a book and enjoy the nature around you. In this lake, it is possible to bathe. And the water isn’t dirty. But it might be quite cold, considering that during the night the temperatures are around zero.

Things to do in Huacachina and around

tour to ballestas islands
From Huacachina you can visit for example the natural reserve in Paracas

If you want to make Huacachina as your base, there are a couple of things that you can do around. For example, Huacachina is the only hour from Paracas and it’s a nature preserve, so a lot of companies offer a tour from here. It cost only about 70 soles and usually, there is food including in it.

Another place to visit could be actually Ica, that is located only 10km from Huacachina. Ica is mostly known because of its wine and offers wine tasting in different facilities.

How to get to Huacachina

Because it is such a small place, you need to go to Ica first. There is a lot of bus companies going to Ica. Overall it is just 4 hours from Lima, so it is not difficult to get here. From Ica, just ask for a taxi that would get you to Huacachina. It usually costs about 15 soles to get there and because Huacachina is such a small place, most of the taxi drivers know the hotels.

Because Huacachina is starring to be busy places with tourists, you can easily find here a place where they would store your luggage in case your hotel doesn’t offer such services.

For your next trip:

The buses go to destinations like a Nazca and Arequipa quite regularly. If you want to travel during the night to save the money for the hotel, which I would recommend, it is better to reserve the bus in advance.

 

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