Sandy, Sandy Huacachina Peru

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Huacachina Peru

This tiny oasis in the desert is a stop on most backpackers’ itineraries. The town consists of a handful of hostels, restaurants and artisan stands. There really isn’t much to do in Huacachina itself aside from relaxing on a hammock and drinking pisco sours.

So why does it attract so many people, you may ask? Well, for one thing, it is a good stopping point between Lima and Cusco. But the real reason people stop here is to go sandboarding.

Huacachina Peru
Huacachina Peru

Yes, you are imagining correctly – it is just like snowboarding… but on sand. Well, you don’t have proper bindings or boots; but it is more or less the same.

This was my second experience sandboarding in Huacachina, and it was much different. We stayed at the same hostel, took the same dune buggy, and even saw the same driver I had two years before. The difference was in the size of the dunes.

Two years previous, the dunes they took us on were massive. In fact, my friend and I both sprained our wrists, another friend broke her foot, and a guy in our group blew out his knee. If you were about to embark on something this dangerous in America (or in many other countries), you would at least have to sign a waiver.

But here in Peru they just took our money, then we buckled our makeshift seatbelts on the dune buggy and headed off on a crazy ride. 

Huacachina Peru
Huacachina Peru

I was a bit apprehensive as we headed into the sandy horizon. I was imagining hiking the Inca Trail with a broken foot, but to my relief, the first dune was much smaller than my last time there.

Ben and I both waxed our boards and strapped our feet into the Velcro “bindings” – if you can call them that – and rode down the hill. We went to several dunes, which got progressively bigger – but nowhere compared to the mountains during my first time there.

(I did hear rumors that there were several injuries and they eventually had to start bringing tourists to smaller dunes.)

Huacachina Peru
Huacachina Peru

Regardless, we still had a blast, and came away from the experience injury-free – albeit a bit sandy!

Where to Stay in Huacachina: Banana’s Adventure – One of the only reasonable hotels in town when we stayed there, Banana’s Adventure can hook you up with dune buggy ride and sandboarding. They have a outdoor pool and a tiki hut bar which hosts once a week BBQ nights. 

Comments (4) on “Sandy, Sandy Huacachina Peru

  1. says:

    Hi there! What transportation did you use from Lima to Haucachina then to Cusco? Also, what transportation did you use from Cusco to Arequipa?

    • says:

      Hey Melissa, there are tons of bus companies out there, and you really don’t need to book them that far in advance. We went to the bus station the day before we wanted to travel in most cases just to be sure we had a ticket.

      Prices vary depending on the comfort level, and we didn’t mind paying a little more, especially on night journeys. We had good experiences with Cruz Del Sur. Some of the local buses were good for shorter journeys, but definitely not as comfortable. Hope this helps. Happy planning!

  2. Michele Timoas De Gerolamo says:

    Hi guys,

    Can you please provide information about prices and excursions?


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