Well well, look who’s sandboarding…
Sorry for the break – Marie-Christine – but after a 4 days trek in the Cordillera Blanca, a steak served with lettuce that everybody ate but shouldn’t have and another freezing day in Lima, we needed to rest. We took a bus from Lima on Wednesday and went down the coast to Ica, an hour south of Pisco. From there we hopped into a taxi to the desert oasis of Huacachina, featured on the back of the 50 soles note.
Huacachina is simply out of this world. It is an artificial oasis created a very long time ago and its sole purpose is tourism but still, none of this affects its charm. It may even make it even more otherworldly. The fact that we are here during low season also makes it a lot better. Over the 3 days we spent here, hostels and restaurants never filled up and we got to know every single French speaker who ate at our hostel’s restaurant. Although Huacachina has the reputation of being a big party destination for backpackers, it was very relax and quiet while we were there.
We stayed at Hospedaje del Barco and pretty much did nothing every day. The first day, we had breakfast, went for a walk around the lagoon and went back to bed until 2 pm. Over our three days here though, we managed to sneak in a few winery tours as well as wine and pisco tastings in Ica (we just hired a cab driver on the street to take us and negociated an hourly rate with him) as well as some… sandboarding.
Oh yes, we sandboarded. We really were not planning to. In a slightly backpackery arrogant way, we thought that it was way too dangerous and that it was a completely ridiculous thing to do – why would one want to go and break and arm and a leg in the middle of the peruvian desert, really? But then we got here. And we saw the dunes. And we changed our minds. “Why would one come all the way out here, see these majestic dunes and not get involved with them?” became the question. Not sandboarding would simply be an insult, really.
So although D was scared out of his mind just like anytime we went skiing, we tried it and we both loved it. It is not as fast as snowboarding, which makes it a lot easier – you don’t loose control the same way you do on snow. Walking up thos dunes in snowboarding boots is kind of a pain but it is well worth it.