Sandboarding in Huacachina, Peru is fast becoming one of the must do activities on the backpacker circuit. We all know about snowboarding, but what exactly is sandboarding and why is it becoming so popular amongst visitors to Peru?
Sandboarding is quite similar to snowboarding, except instead of facing cold snow and ice, you will be in the warm surrounds of Huacachina desert in Ica Peru! The other big difference is of course that you will be on sand, not snow, and believe it or not, the texture of the sand makes it even faster than snowboarding! Don’t worry though…the boards that are used on the dunes can also be used in a much easier way for those of us who are not crazy enough to stand up and board down the dunes. Many people, myself included, lie down on these boards and go down the dunes face first, meaning you can experience the speed and thrill of the dunes in a much safer way!
The dunes of Huacachina are the biggest dunes in South America and can be difficult even for expert snowboarders. However, many travellers get a better adrenalin rush not from sandboarding but from the dune buggys! As part of all sandboarding tours, you get taken to the top of the dunes by these huge powerful buggys, and riding over these dunes at breathtaking speeds is the closest version to a rollercoaster on wheels you will ever get! The local drivers are becoming world famous for their crazy (yet safe) driving and you will find yourself asking yourself ¨how the heck did we not crash?!¨quite a lot!
Related: Surfing in Peru
Huacachina as a destination is simply incredible. The only natural desert oasis in South America, you will simply be overawed by the incredible dunes that surround you as you lie by the pool at your hostel. One thing that we strongly recommend you do is to climb the dunes at approximately 5pm to watch the sunset over the lake…simply breathtaking. What makes Huacachina even more special is that this oasis paradise is located just 5 minutes from the crazy and busy city of Ica!
Huacachina is also a great place to have some good local coffee with Desert Nights restaurant being one of the better places serving good budget price coffee. From Huacachina, it is also possible to go to Nazca to do the Nazca Lines flight, with half day trips available from Huacachina for about $100. Huacachina is also located just 10 minutes from the city of Ica, home to world famous Pisco Vineyards, another must do on any trip to Peru.
Huacachina is more than sandboarding, although we are pretty sure the dune buggys will be one of the best things you have ever done, so make sure you visit Huacachina on your way to Peru, and remember that Huacachina is just 5 minutes from the city of Ica, which is served by most bus companies, although our Peru Hop buses go direct to Huacachina to avoid any issues with taking taxis to and from bus terminals!