Peru – the western South American country has long attracted visitors from all over the world, striking them with its fascinating history, rich culture, breathtaking landscapes and friendly people. Not only the ancient Inca city of Machu Picchu, the country boasts so much more: the highest navigable lake in the world, the mysterious Nazca lines, vibrant cities, the great Amazon river and endless deserts.

Yet, this article introduces one of the most popular districts (and city) in Peru: Ica. Located on the Peruvian Gringo Trail in the southwestern area of the country, it is not difficult to see why tourists come here. The Ica district boasts in fact magic landscapes, as well as a rich history and an extraordinary culture.

For further information about the ultimate backpacking trip in Peru, as well as to discover the best things to do in Ica, visit the German website BackpackerTrail.

Best time to visit Ica

It is important to keep in mind that the country is located in the Southern Hemisphere, therefore, seasons are here reversed in comparison to Europe. Although the climate in Ica is warm throughout the whole year, it is not suggested travelling in summer (December- March), since temperatures are extremely hot and can even pass 30°C. The best time to visit Ica is therefore from May to April, when visitors can enjoy the pleasant temperatures (24°C on average) that the country offers.

Getting there

There are several ways to reach the city of Ica from some of the most important Peruvian cities, including Lima, Nazca, and Cusco. The easiest way is by car. The city is in fact located only a 4-hour drive away from Lima and 2 hours and a half from Nazca. Yet, if you don’t have a car, the country boasts a surprisingly well-developed bus network, which connects Ica to Lima, Cusco, Arequipa, Nazca and Paracas. Unfortunately, visitors must keep in mind that Huacachina is not reachable with any direct public lines.

What to do in Ica


Huacachina is a small village built around a small oasis, which in turn is surrounded by sand desert dunes. Although the city is visited by thousands of tourists every year, it counts only 100 inhabitants. Every activity here is an adventure, from sandboarding to dune buggying. Numerous travel guides suggest exploring the desert in the late afternoon, time in which it is possible to admire the gorgeous landscapes at sunset.

The Regional Museum of Ica

The Regional Museum of Ica allows visitors to discover and explore some of the most important facts of Peruvian history(and not only). The entry ticket costs only 7.5 soles (4 soles if you are a student), which is the equivalent of approximately 2 euro. Yet, it must be argued that only some artifacts and representations display an English explanation, therefore, it is also suggested to hire a English-speaking travel guide.

Wine Tasting

Ica is world-know because it is the birthplace of Pisco, the Peruvian national liquor. Yet, although it is surrounded by the desert, Ica also boasts an incredibly good quality of wine, thus a wine tasting is extremely recommended.

The Canyon de los Perdidos

The Canyon de los Perdidos is located 3 hours away from the city of Ica and, although it is extremely beautiful, it is quite unknown to many visitors. Yet, there is the possibility to book numeros tours with some local guides … don’t miss this opportunity!

The Nazca Lines

Located approximately 2 hours and a half from the city of Ica, the Nazca Lines represent one of the big mysteries of history. Historians, archeologists and scientists still don’t know who and why these huge figures of animals, plants and other objects are drawn in the sand … who knows, maybe you will discover something new!

Some useful tips for your trip

Keep in mind that it is warm all year round, therefore, it is important to stay hydrated and to always take some water with you! Moreover, no need to say that it is going to be extremely sunny and hot … don’t forget sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses.