SANDBOARDING THE DUNES OF PERU
Experience a day in the Peruvian desert like no other. Hire a buggy, grab your board and prepare to get your adrenaline pumping as you ride the sand dunes like a pro
Words: Emily Georgieva
Photography: Dave Herring
07 November 2020
After you have made it to Huacachina and enjoyed all of its splendor, it’s time to head away from the “Oasis in the Desert” and towards the sea of sand. Located opposite of the city of Ica, the sand dunes of Peru will have you look at the place in a whole new perspective. An ideal adventure place for adrenaline seekers, the Peruvian dunes are where you should practice your boarding skills or perhaps make your first attempt at sandboarding.
When you arrive, it will feel like you have stepped into a futuristic film. The desert will surround you from all sides, the sun will warm up your skin and the sound of buggies roaring in the near distance will get your blood pumping anticipating the adventure ahead. The buggy drive will ease you in what you should expect. Driving up and down the dunes is just as fun and challenging as sandboarding down them. Usually with a whole group on board a few buggies will take adventurists to the designated area where the real fun begins.
The boards add a certain kind of character to the whole experience Most of them are old snowboards or alternative, which are waxed up and ready for you before you take your slide. Pick your one and remember to always distribute your weight as evenly as possible so you don’t end up falling off or losing control of the board.
Once standing on the board, overlooking the sand, and speeding through the dunes, you will experience the kind of freedom that people rarely get close to. If you have never done anything like this before or you are not confident in your board skills, you can still go ahead and experience riding the dunes. The instructors will get you to lay flat on your belly with your arms tucked in and your head held up, and as soon as you are ready, you can rock on. Fortunately, the sand makes any fall feel softer so there is nothing to worry about, even if your first time doesn’t go as smoothly as you expected.
Riding the dunes is unlike anything else. Although volcano boarding is quite similar, being in the middle of the desert, sliding from smaller dunes to bigger ones and learning to be one with the sand will bring a different kind of adrenaline rush.
Huacachina is a must-see when you plan a trip to Peru, but our advice is to definitely take the time to schedule a sandboarding day in the Peruvian desert. A cheap activity to do, around £10 per person in most cases, booking a sandboarding session is on offer in many hotels and you can choose between joining a tour group or privately hiring a buggy for the day. It is a truly authentic way to experience the wild side of Peru if you ask us!