Paracas, Ica and Nasca Peru Friday, September 3
Updated: Nov 22, 2021
We got up at 3:00 am to leave Lima at 4:00 am. Super early but not too bad as we went to bed at 8:00 pm. It gets dark a little after 6:00 pm. We were still tired from the travel day- 1:00 pm until 2:00 am.
We went by a driver to the bus stop. We found out that there were no early big buses traveling to Paracas. Martin found us another driver and went with 3 other passengers. It took until 5:00 am to finally leave. The driver needed air for his tires on one stop. Then another gas station for fuel. I took advantage of the restroom as this was going to be a 2-hour drive to Pisco. It was dark and foggy so we both slept. The driver was not very smooth. He was jumpy and jerky. He had his window all the way down so it was extremely cold. He liked to play his music loud too……..we still slept. We put our hoodies up and reclined the seats--probably onto the other passengers' laps.
Next, we got off at the bus stop/station in Picso and found another car to Paracas. It’s right on the ocean. The weather cleared up and was warm. We waited 30 minutes for our boat to board. We found some coffee and light breakfast sandwiches. Martin always knows the best places to go. We had a 2-hour boat tour of the Ballestas Islands. We motored past some “lines” called the Paracas Candelabra.
There were lots of sand dunes and the landscape was beautiful. The islands are covered in bird poop and they harvest it for fertilizer. Super smart! On the islands, we saw tons of blue-footed boobies (birds), Humboldt Penguins, and large seals. We were lucky enough to get some great pictures. I was happy. Loved the boat ride. On the way back our driver was racing another tour boat…..we got back to the marina first! We enjoyed this tour and would recommend it.
We hopped back in another car with our large suitcase filled with a month’s worth of clothing, and 2 backpacks. The tour company watched our luggage behind the counter when we were on tour. As we drove away from the coast, the ride started getting hotter.
We ended up in Ica where we went to the Huacachina Sand Dunes. This was by far the most exciting part of this day….so far! Huge sand dunes everywhere you look. We got in a buggy with 6 other folks plus the driver. Larry and I sat upfront. I sat by the driver…..no windshield, with the stick between my legs. It was loud! Water sprayed from the leaky radiator in my face. Sunglasses helped. It was quite a ride. The girls screamed as we headed straight down and you could not see the edge. It was hard to photograph or capture in the video how huge and exciting this was… I guess you’ll need to see yourself.
Larry and some others did some sandboarding on their bellies. I didn’t try. It didn't look that fun.
After we had a beer together with Martin as we waited for our next car to arrive. It was a short one-hour drive to this little village called Palpa that grows oranges plus had a great restaurant Martin wanted us to try. It was a super cute place with a beautiful garden.
Unfortunately, they had just stopped serving food 15 minutes earlier. Consolation prize, they had a fabulous restroom! I rate the Banos on a scale of 1-5. One being bad. You get a point for a toilet seat, toilet paper, soap, hand towels, and if it is free…... It gets 5 potty stars! This place was a Solid 5.
Still looking for food, we stopped by a roadside market and purchased oranges and beer of course!
Back on the road, we stopped by the elevated lookout to get our first sights of the Nasca Lines. We listened to Martin explain about the significant people who discovered and studied these magical lines. Then we walked up 100’s of stairs to see amazing creations. We were able to see the lizard, tree, hands, just today. We will be going out tomorrow to more ruins around the city of Nasca. The following day we are scheduled to fly over to see them all. I can’t wait to go flying.
We saw our first Nasca sunset on the way to dinner. We walked the short distance into town, close to the square. We ate a fabulous dinner at La Estacion mostly because we were starving tourists! I washed my tasty salad down with 2 beers.
We enjoyed a leisurely walk back to our hotel, Don Agucho Hostal.
So far all the hotels we have been booked into have been excellent! This one has a wonderful pool. It’s beautiful!