Things to do in Ica Region

Our most recommended things to do in Ica Region

From Nazca: 35-Minute Flight Over Nazca Lines

1. From Nazca: 35-Minute Flight Over Nazca Lines

After pickup from your hotel or bus station in Nazca, transfer to the Nazca aerodrome. Meet your representative and go to the check-in zone to wait for your flight. Get briefed on the nature of your tour and on safety instructions. The flight lasts 35-minutes and you will see 12 of the most representative figures drawn on the stony surface of the Nazca desert. Look out for representations of animals and plants, distributed in a labyrinth of lines, trapezes, and triangles which have been preserved for almost 2,000 years. The Nazca Lines are some of the most incredible remains from an ancient culture. These designs, some as long as 500 meters, can be truly appreciated from the sky at an altitude of 1,500 feet. After your experience, fly back to the aerodrome and head back to your hotel in Nazca.

From Ica or Huacachina: Dune Buggy at Sunset & Sandboarding

2. From Ica or Huacachina: Dune Buggy at Sunset & Sandboarding

Explore Huacachina, the only oasis in Peru, in a truly thrilling way. Ride over the sand dunes in a 4x4 buggy before then taking part in a sandboarding session. Start with pickup from Ica or Huacachina. Head to the oasis, and get the adrenaline pumping with a dune buggy ride. Feel as if you’re on a rollercoaster as you go up and down dunes of up to 30 meters in height. Take stops to snap photos of the desert landscape and the small lake surrounded by palm trees. Next, try your hand at sandboarding down those same dunes. This experience is suitable for all skill levels, as you’ll be learning the best techniques from your driver. Afterward visit one of the highlights of Huacachinha, the sunset over the desert. Enjoy incredible views of the sun going down, and find the best spot to snap photos with the help of your driver. Choose the private option if you’d like to tailor the tour to your group’s preferences. Select a different route, explore other areas, and adjust the starting time.

Paracas: Ballestas Islands Morning Boat Tour

3. Paracas: Ballestas Islands Morning Boat Tour

Your Paracas coastline adventure departs from the marina in the morning and then heads out onto the open blue waters of the ocean. The first stop of the tour is the famous El Candelabro, also known as the ‘Candelabra of the Andes’, a prehistoric geoglyph on the northern face of the Paracas Peninsula at Pisco Bay. Admire the imposing figure set into the landscape and learn more about the history of the geoglyph from your tour guide. The boat sails onto the Ballestas Islands next, a collection of biodiverse islets that are home to an array of protected and endangered animals and birds. From the boat, admire these beautiful islands and learn about the many marine species it houses, including the curious Humboldt penguins, the playful sea lions, and the exuberant colorful birds. Visitors to the islands are not permitted onto the land because it is a protected natural area, however there is plenty of time to see all that the islands have to offer from the comfort of the boat.

From Paracas: Scenic Boat Tour to Ballestas Island

4. From Paracas: Scenic Boat Tour to Ballestas Island

After a convenient hotel pickup from either Paracas or Pisco, head to the Marina Turistica to start your islands adventure. Board a speedboat with your bilingual, Spanish and English-speaking guide, and jet out onto the sea towards the stunning Ballestas. Along the way, stop at the Paracas Peninsula to see the Candelabro, an enigmatic glyph carved into the side of the island — whose purpose, and creator, remain a mystery to this day. Afterwards, continue onwards towards the marine sanctuary of Ballestas. Gaze upon the rocky shores, filled to the brim with sunbathing seals and penguins diving into the turbid waters to hunt underneath the surface — all alongside other beautiful specimens, like majestic pelicans, and colorful blue-footed boobies. A protected habitat for the wide swathe of birds and sea-life that call these islands home, Ballestas is truly one of Peru’s natural treasures — and a speedboat tour around their shores is the best way to see the islands, and all they have to offer, up close.

From Paracas: Ballestas Islands & Paracas National Reserve

5. From Paracas: Ballestas Islands & Paracas National Reserve

After a convenient hotel pickup from either Paracas or Pisco, head to the Marina Turistica to start your adventure. Board a speedboat with your bilingual, Spanish and English-speaking guide, and jet out onto the sea towards the stunning Ballestas. Along the way, stop at the Paracas Peninsula to see the Candelabro, an enigmatic glyph carved into the side of the island — whose purpose, and creator, remain a mystery to this day. Afterwards, continue onwards towards the marine sanctuary of Ballestas. Gaze upon the rocky shores, filled to the brim with sunbathing seals, and penguins diving into the turbid waters to hunt underneath the surface — all alongside other beautiful specimens, like majestic pelicans, and colorful blue-footed boobies. You’ll then return to the Marina Turistica for a drive to Paracas National Reserve. An almost alien landscape, the Paracas National Reserve is composed of vast, sprawling deserts and high sandstone cliffs directly next to the bright, blue ocean. Driving through the reserve, see the Cathedral, an area where a vast rock formation once stood before being destroyed by a cataclysmic earthquake. Your tour caps things off with visits to Playa Roja and Lagunillas Beach, two stunning maroon-sand beaches that are truly one-of-a-kind. Having seen some of the world's most unique natural features, flora, and fauna, you'll hop back in the car for a convenient transfer back to your hotel.

From Lima: Full-Day Paracas and Huacachina Bus Tour

6. From Lima: Full-Day Paracas and Huacachina Bus Tour

Discover the serene landscapes of the Peruvian countryside on a day trip from Lima to Paracas and Huacachina with hotel transfers included. See Humboldt penguins and sea lions on the Ballestas Islands and slide down the Huacachina dunes by sandboarding and dune buggy ride.  Your adventure begins with an early-morning pickup from your hostel or hotel. From here, travel to Paracas, a beautiful small town by the sea, on a spacious bus where you'll be able to relax for the 4-hour ride. Once in Paracas, begin a 2-hour boat tour of the Ballestas Islands, a smaller version of the Galapagos. Spot sea lions, penguins, and plenty of birds up close and all in their natural habitats. You may even get the chance to see a dolphin or two. Around lunchtime, it's time to move on from Paracas to Huacachina, a natural oasis located in the Ica Desert, home to the biggest sand dunes in South America. Enjoy some free time here. Explore and have lunch (at your own expense) in one of the local restaurants around the oasis. Following lunch, it will be time for 2 hours of exhilarating dune buggy rides and sandboarding. Dune buggy up the sand dunes and sandboard down these giant hills of sand, a once-in-a-lifetime experience in the only natural desert oasis in South America. In the evening, board your bus back to Lima. Once onboard, sit back and relax on the comfortable seats while you enjoy a movie on board. You will later be dropped off directly at your hotel/hostel upon arrival in Lima.

From Lima: Paracas and Huacachina Full Day Guided Tour

7. From Lima: Paracas and Huacachina Full Day Guided Tour

Start with pickup from your hotel in Lima at around 05:00 AM, all depends your location in Lima, where you will board the coach for a 03:30-hour journey to Paracas town. Before getting to Paracas, we will stop to have breakfast. On your arrival in Paracas, make your way to the dock where you will board a speedboat to the Ballestas Islands. During your journey to Ballestas, see the enigmatic figure of the Candelabro, a stunning design drawn on the side of a hill in the Peninsula. There are many hypotheses regarding its origin, some believe it is related to the Nazca Lines but still found no proof or evidence that can define its creation. In the Ballestas Islands, you will see a stunningly rugged world filled with birds and sea lions. You will navigate around the islands at a distance allowed, and depending on the sea conditions, visit nearby caves. Return to the port at 11 am, and spend some time in Paracas where you will have free time for restrooms or a short time to relax. Then, continue to the next destination, Huacachina oasis. Have a small break to prepare for your desert tour; then board a buggy for 1-hour adventure across the sand dunes that surround the water source. Return to Huacachina and have time for refreshment. Continue towards to traditional vineyard and taste the best of the local wine and Pisco or lunch at the vineyard restaurant, then Drive back to Lima arriving and dropping off at your hotel. At around 21:30 or 22 pm On this one-day tour, you will have an assistant guide on the trip who will help you with your concerns on your trip.

From Huacachina: Scenic Flight over the Nazca Lines

8. From Huacachina: Scenic Flight over the Nazca Lines

This trip starts in Huacachina at 9:30 am and all participants are picked up from their accommodations. You travel in a comfortable air-conditioned vehicle for 2 hours in direction to Nazca airport. During the way you will see the beautiful desert and the sea. Once at the airport you will jump into the plane. The flight takes 35 minutes and you will be able to watch the beautiful Nazca Lines which have animals shape and make everyone wonder how human could do such an amazing job. After the flight is over, you will go to "Palpa" viewpoint to watch some other lines. When the tour ends you can decide to stay in Nazca to continue your trip to the south of Peru or come back to Huacachina to keep enjoying the oasis and the dunes.

From Huacachina: Ballestas Island and Paracas Reserve Tour

9. From Huacachina: Ballestas Island and Paracas Reserve Tour

Start with pickup from your hotel within Ica/Huacachina and drive towards the Marina Turistica to begin your adventure. Board a speedboat with your guide, and jet out onto the sea towards the stunning Ballestas. Stop at the Paracas Peninsula to see the Candelabro, an enigmatic glyph carved into the side of the island, whose purpose, and creator, remain a mystery to this day. Continue onwards towards the marine sanctuary of Ballestas. Gaze upon the rocky shores filled to the brim with sunbathing seals, and penguins diving into the turbid waters to hunt underneath the surface. See other beautiful specimens, like majestic pelicans, and colorful blue-footed boobies. Return to the Marina Turistica for a drive to Paracas National Reserve. Discover the almost alien landscape of the Paracas National Reserve, with vast sprawling deserts and high sandstone cliffs. Driving through the reserve, see the Cathedral, an area where a vast rock formation once stood before being destroyed by a cataclysmic earthquake. Visit the stunning maroon-sand beaches of Playa Roja and Lagunillas Beach. Having seen some of the world's most unique natural features, flora, and fauna, At the end of the tour drive back to your hotel in Ica/Huacachina or in Paracas.

Nazca: Flight Over Nazca, Cerro Blanco & Cantalloc Aqueduct

10. Nazca: Flight Over Nazca, Cerro Blanco & Cantalloc Aqueduct

Come and discover the mystery of Peru, the millenarian Geoglyphs of Nazca Lines, and the ancient Cantalloc Aqueduct. After pickup from your hotel or bus station in Nazca, transfer to the Maria Reiche Aerodrome. Enjoy a 35-minute flight over the Nazca Lines, where you will learn about the collection of giant geoglyphs made by the Nazcas in South America. Appreciate their 2,000-year-old history and how they have now been made into a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Other Sightseeing Options in Ica Region

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What people are saying about Ica Region

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 907 reviews

We had some problems at the pick up, they delayed for 2 hours and in the first hour we didn’t know if we will go, but in the end they managed to make the trip. The bus is comfortable. The 2 destinations are incredible, you need to see those places if you are in Lima

The pick up folllow up was not great. We booked 48hours in advance and had to email to get a pick up. Also didn't fly when we were supposed to, so I would advise a cushion of time

Pros: - detailed visit around the Ballestas Islands - amazing nature and wildlife Cons: - it started with a 25 mins delay without communication

Wonderful guide, as a solo woman traveler I felt very safe and the bus was comfortable and clean. Would definitely recommend Peru Hop.

Truly incredible experience with a professional and kind guide! I really loved this experience.