The Great Peruvian Desert

Ica lies just 4 hours south of the megalopolis of Lima. You might feel anxious to get into the Andes to see Cusco and Machu Pichu, but if ever you’re to take a bit of advice, take this advice; slow down and check out the traveler’s heaven of Huacachina.

You’ll immediately feel the heat once you exit the immediate area where Lima calls home. The garua fog is left behind and you’re basking once more in the sun. Your bus will pull into the city of Ica and you’ll hop onto the pavement, throwing your backpack over your shoulder. The adventure is simple to navigate this time around. Hail a taxi or, preferably, a motorized rickshaw, and hop aboard.

Read more: Sandboarding in the wonderful Oasis of Huacachina

The taxi will wind around dune-like hills for 15 minutes until finally you arrive to the legitimate and awesome dunes that engulf the small body of water. Here you’ll find plenty of hostels and options to camp. You could hike up one of the dunes and camp somewhere out there, but since dune buggies rage during the day, it might not be the best idea.

In any case, you’ve made it; you’re at the desert oasis. The water is not suitable for swimming, but the concrete ring walk is pleasant, and the bar selection is agreeable for a good party. This place is a popular backpacker destination, and you’re sure to make friends quickly. There are usually artisans galore, which makes it a great place to pick up souvenirs for friends and family back home.

The dunes that skirt the oasis are quite massive. You might decide to take a dune buggy tour of the desert.  They’ll take you far out into the sea of sand in an incredibly fun dune buggy. Out there, you can play around with your camera in ways that other destinations simply can’t provide.

Read more: The amazing wildlife of Islas Ballestas and Paracas exotic beaches

Back at the oasis, you can also rent a sand board for a bit of adrenaline jerking. The hike up the sand is demanding, but once you’re atop a dune with the sprawling view of the desert beyond, you’ll be glad you made it. You’ll also be glad that you brought that board along to slide your way down the grainy slope. Careful not to fall!