Trip Start Feb 09, 2010
Trip End Jan 22, 2011

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Flag of Peru  , Ica,
Monday, May 10, 2010

Huacachina is a desert oasis town in the Ica desert, situated about 5km from Ica. The place is surrounded by sky scraping sand dunes, ripe for sandboarding and dune buggying. It is a tiny little town, more of a village, or hamlet actually. It is about 20 restaurants, hotels and hostels clustered around a lagoon. 

We arrived early in the morning after a very uncomfortable over-night bus journey that must have been along the worlds most twisty road. You couldnt get to sleep as you just kept being thrown from side to side. Anyway...we arrived a little scrambled. Luckily a taxi driver was waiting for tired gringos on the side of the road in Ica, ready to take us to the oasis town.

Upon arriving, our first choice of hostel was full, so we did a bit of walking around and managed to find a cheap one with swimming pool. We later heard that that hostel had a 40 bed dorm, and it cost the same as our 6 bed dorm, so we were very pleased at the escape.

The bread and butter of this town, and the only and main reason we came, is its dune buggying tours. We did a bit of shopping around on our first day, and got quotes of  45, 40, and 35 soles respectively. Whilst having breakfast, the owner came up to us and offered us a tour and we haggled him to 30 soles. Bargain!

It turned out to be one of the best choices we've made! We were picked up in a crazy looking vehicle that looked and sounded like something from Mad Max. The meaty engine can go FAST. Loaded and strapped in the back, our driver set off racing through the dunes at breakneck speeds and at angles that I didnt think were possible. We were thrown around like dolls in the back seat, it was really fantastic. There are sandboards in the back too, so after the first round of buggying you get taken to 3 little nursery dunes to practice with your boards. After rubbing a candle on the bottom, we soon got going, me and Zoe opting for the lying down approach as our previous attempts at standing up whilst boarding were less than successful. After mastering the lying down, we were taken to the main event. We got to board down 4 MASSIVE dunes. They were so big. You felt like you were going about a million miles an hour and everyone was screaming from the thrill of it. Unfortunately, on the very last and very biggest dune, I lost my sandboard and it skidded all the way down to the bottom. Zoe and I had to share her board. It was slower than if we'd gone down seperately, but it was still awesome fun. We also had the craziest driver of them all. He would select the scariest angles and biggest dunes to tear up, and would break only just in time before the edge of a cliff or another vehicle. This is going down as one of the best things I have ever done.

Apart from the sandboarding, we did little else in Huacachine. Whilst there though, we found out that Trailfinders had cancelled all of our flights from Miami onwards! After a lot of sorting out and frustrating phone calls, we also decided we would fly out of Bogota in Colombia instead of Lima, so are now heading further north than we had planned. We didn't feel the need to stay any longer in Huacachina and got the bus the following day to Pisco.
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Dadiox on

The sandboarding looks awesome.
crazy buggy!

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