Ica, Peru

In the afternoon we left Lima went to the South on Pan-American highway, which stretches across South America along the Pacific ocean. After 4 hours driving on a dusty road in the dark we get to Ica.

Ica is a little dirty  town. As elsewhere on the Pacific coast of Peru it is  covered with a thick layer of sand dust. These places are called “Pacific Sandbox.” Near the bus terminal there are many taxi drivers. All vying to offer a ride. They speak only Spanish. I quickly managed to bring down the price by a third and we go to the hotel. This hotel was the best on the route, booked for a maximum discount. It is behind a tall fence with barbed wire and guards. Inside solid 5*. All very nice, well maintained, spotlessly clean. Unknown archivestudio growing trees on the territory near the pools Alpaca roam, and at the horizon you can see a huge sand dune. The hotel is called Las Dunas.

Here I first tried the “Peruvian sushi” – ceviche – raw fish and seafood marinated in lime juice. I liked it, then several times ordered.
The next day we gathered at the Ballestas Islands, where you might spot a variety of birds, sea lions and even penguins Gumbolt, because there is a cold current. We wanted to go to a travel Agency at the hotel. In the morning it had to work, but spent a lot of time in the lobby, we realized that no one will come. We asked at the reception for help, the girl called somewhere and said that no one would come. But it was our problem, so the same girl at the reception  found us a private guide with a car. Quickly came smiling Peruvian Margarita. She drove us to the pier in the town of Paracas. We got on one of the latest speed boat with a capacity of 50 people with a guide. Everybody put on life jackets.

The sea was a thrill. The boat raced at a breakneck speed, we rode the waves and after 10 minutes we were all wet to the skin. On the way we stopped to see on the sandy slope of a huge figure, the so-called “chandelier”, has been posted as tracks in the sand unknown by whom and when.

The guide quickly told all this in English and Spanish and we rushed on to the Islands. When we saw sticking out of the sea, rocky islands, then immediately felt a sharp smell of bird droppings (guano). It’s impossible to land on the islands, it is a protected reserve. There are only scientists in shifts and  collectors of guano.

Sea lions climb up on the rocky shore. it is possible to drive very close.

But sailing to the beach, where  rested  pregnant females was prohibited not to worry them. I would very much like to see the kids,but you need to arrive in January, February. In dark caves hid a few penguins, perhaps in the summer it was hot. On the way back, the waves rose even more. We met the fishermen on our way back. They waited for the calm water. But we raced to the shore.
Margaret suggested that we go to the Paracas reserve. We agreed. I think that we certainly overpaid, but I didn’t regret to pay for the experience. The reserve was just a desert with a beautiful red dunes, overhanging the ocean.

Margarita is honestly worked for her money, she drove us across the sand in search of Ammonites and we pretended that we are very interested. Finally, she took us to the observation deck. The view was spectacular, deep blue ocean and red Bank. The site was fenced, but our girl said that you can go over the fence “all the same no one sees.” We made a cool photo.

Then we came to the beach and ran to get our feet wet in the Pacific ocean. We could swim, it was 18 degrees, but we just jumped in the waves, it was a great fun.