Travelling south from Lima, you past a few major cities, Paracas and Pisco, Ica and Nazca. Out of the 3 I decided to stop off at Ica, which took about 5 hour bus ride from Lima.
Paracas is a place which offers Peru’s version of the Galapagos (Ballestas Islands). Nazca offers organised flight tours to see the famous lines of Nazca. Finally Ica, which is near the oasis tourist spot of Huacachina.
I didn’t stay in Huacachina as I was told it was overpriced, dirty and just for tourists (which is totally true) . Don’t look too closely at the picture as you will notice the reality of the place! haha!
I opted for the nearby town of Ica- which I am glad that I did. From here is was able to book a 2 hour sunset dune buggy and sand boarding tour- which was amazing! And a must when you are in the area. Just hope that you don’t get one of the insane drivers!
The dunes were massive, and a few times I was rather scared about going down them….especially the limited instructions of how to do it! I was faced with steep drops of about 200m My advice is to bring a bottle of water with you, carry only a camera (but I left mine on the buggy when I went sand boarding) and nothing else (unless the entrance fee isn’t included in the tour). Everyone says that it is necessary to wear trainers, I forgot them on the bus which wasn’t a problem as I just did it bare foot and avoided the copious amounts of sand in the shoes!
I stayed for 2 days 1 night, which was defiantly sufficient as outside the tourist sites there isn’ much to do. The town of Ica was hit by an earthquake about 10 years ago so a lot of it isn’t re built entirely, so not a place to wonder. There are some wineries in Pisco that can be visited in half a day just outside the Ica.