When we were travelling through Peru, we heard about South America’s only natural desert oasis: Huacachina. At the time we had no set plans or time crunch on how long we could spend in Peru, so we said why not? It sounded awesome – a desert oasis surrounded by sand dunes, where you could go boarding down and hop on a dune buggy.

Rachel looking over Huacachina, a desert oasis.
Looking down at Huacachina from the dunes

Huacachina is 4 hours south of Lima, the capital and largest city in Peru. There are plenty of flights in and out of Lima from all around the country. You can hop on a bus to the nearest town Ica and then a taxi, or take the Peru Hop bus directly from Lima. 

A sand buggy driving over the dunes of Huacachina
The dunes seem to go forever!

Taking a dune buggy and sand-boarding down the dunes are a must do when in Huacachina. You can usually haggle with tour operators and get a good deal in person for a combo of both. Our dune buggy was a little suspect, and the chassis broke on the first dune we went on. But it’s South America, sometimes you’ve got to go with the flow…and risk kinda makes it exciting? just us? okay.

A sand buggy on the dunes of Huacachina at sunset, with a golden glow
Love a good sunset…

Our tour guide gave us wax to rub on the back of our boards, so we could gain some serious speed when sliding down the dunes. It was so much fun, and we felt way cooler than we actually are. Which is always a plus…

Rachel on a sand board, flying down the dunes of Huacachina

Seeing the sunset while you’re on the dunes is just magical. It’s one of the best parts of the buggy ride and sand boarding – can never get enough of that gorgeous glow.

A group of people with sand boards, standing on sand dunes watching the sunset. A dune buggy is in the background.
Everyone having a blast!

Huacachina is such a unique and fun place to visit. It’s also pretty cheap and easy to access, as Peru is really well set up for visitors. If you have a chance – make sure you add it to your itinerary! And if you’re looking for something else outside the box, check out the cat park in Lima.

A desert oasis in the sunset light.