PARACAS – ICA – NAZCA – TOUR
Paracas • Ballestas Islands • Ica • Oase Huacachina • Nazca • Lima
3D – 2N
The Nazca Lines, discovered in 1927, are the most extraordinary legacy left by a culture that flourished in 300 BC. These lines are a series of complex designs up to 300 meters (984 feet) long which can only be seen in their true dimension at an altitude of at least 1500 feet.
The lines that decorate the desert floor like an embroidery of the gods have been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and the ancient mystery of the figures still waits to be unraveled. Paracas is home to the Paracas Reserve, which harbors a large variety of bird species, sea lion colonies, penguins and many other species, making the area one of the country´s richest in terms of biodiversity.
The area is ideal for adventure sports, eco-tourism and sailing. We recommend the early morning boat rides around the Ballestas Islands.
The Nazca Lines
History of the Nazca Lines
The Nazca Lines are huge images in the Nazca Desert in Peru. On an area of 500 square kilometers puzzling lines, figures as well as animal and human representations pervade the landscape. These geoglyphs were discovered around 1920 with the beginning of commercial air travel, when passengers could see the enigmatic drawings from the air. Little is known about the origin and purpose of geoglyphs. Similar representations on ceramics of the Nazca culture make up most of the desert images for this people, which flourished between the second century b.Chr. and the sixth century a.Chr.. Today’s research has shown that some of the images must have been taken several centuries before, during the period of paracas culture. The mysterious Nazca inhabited the valleys of the Rio Nazca, Rio Palpa and Rio Ingenio. Its religious and cultural center was the pyramid town of Cahuachi near the lines. The desert drawings were created by the removal of the uppermost layer of sand, beneath which came the lighter, light brown sedimentary rock. This way, clearly visible oversized drawings were created from a distance.
The fact that the bearers of both cultures, who are named after important sites, apparently one and the same people, is just one of the many discoveries, the scientists of the Commission for Archeology of Non-European Cultures of the German Archaeological Institute in cooperation with the peruvian Ministry of Culture and other partners in their ongoing since 1997 excavations have made. Traces of larger groups Newcomers to the region have not been found so far.
Nonetheless, geoglyphs have undergone a fundamental transformation over the centuries. At first, the people of Paracas made rock paintings of a few meters in size. Soon, however, they transferred these images from the vertical to the horizontal, to the demarcated ridge between the cut valleys of the rivers flowing from the Andes towards the sea, and the dry plateaus above, the so-called pampas. These figurative ground drawings, representing animals like hummingbirds or fish, grew larger over time. An orca, whose discovery was recently known, measures about 60 meters long and is dated to 200 b.Chr., ie to the time in which shifted the center of culture from Paracas to Nazca.
Dunes, Sand and Fun
The Huacachina oasis is located in the province of Ica, which is about 4 hours drive south of Lima. From Ica you need only a few minutes by taxi or car to arrive outside Ica in the midst of the approximately 100 m high dune mountains. The place is one of Peru’s special tourist attractions because of its well-known oasis (Laguna de Huacachina) and the surrounding dune mountains, which is also used by many peruvians for weekend trips. The dune mountains, with their height of about 100 meters, are also among the largest tourist dunes in Perú. The lagoon lake is fed by a mineral-containing underground river.
Thus, the lagoon was used in the beginning of the tourist era as a kind of spa for rheumatism. The water level has been steadily decreasing in recent years and the lagoon is visibly becoming more and more degenerated. For example, the responsible local people have to think more and more about how they can continue to maintain this attractive tourist destination while meaningfully limiting the amount of water removed from the surrounding plantations. To save this little paradise from dehydration, water from other sources is repeatedly pumped into the lagoon at the decision of the government of Ica.
Level of Difficulty
- Bus service Paracas/Ica/Nazca/Lima.
- Transfer bus station/hotel/bus station.
- All transfers in destination.
- 1 Night of lodging in Paracas.
- 1 Night of lodging in Nazca.
- Tour to Ballestas Islands.
- Tour to National Reserve of Paracas.
- Tour to Huacachina.
- Overflight Nazca Lines.
- Professional guides.
- All entrance fees.
- Personal assistance.
- Airport / bus station taxes.
- Personal articles.
- Daily departures.
- Special discounts for groups.
- Sharing service.