One of the most popular activities in Nazca, second only to flying over the Nazca Lines, is to go on a sand buggy ride in the desert. They might look small, but these little vehicles can hit the dunes at a surprising speed, and even catch a little air on the way! Some travelers have likened it to the roller coaster ride in the desert. Because sand buggy rides are usually combined with sandboarding, the art of ‘surfing’ down the sand dunes, they’re the ideal excursion for travelers who enjoy high-adrenaline adventures.
There are several sand buggy tours available. Some take you to Huacachina Oasis and Cerro Blanco, the world’s largest sand dune. Others take you to the Cantayoc Aqueducts and/or the mysterious ruins of Cahuachi and the ancient cemetery of Chauchillas.
Sand buggies are small, seating six people. The top part of the vehicle is open in order to increase the power-to-weight ratio, although there is a frame made of metal rails for protection. They look funny when on the streets of Nazca, but are surprisingly agile in the desert.
When it’s time for sandboarding, you will receive a lesson on how to maneuver, start and stop. If you are sandboarding on Cerro Blanco, you will be able to practice on smaller sand dunes located around the peak. Once you feel you are ready, you can take the big leap, a 600-meter fall that you will never forget.
If you choose a half-day excursion, as most people do, then we recommend that you opt to go in the afternoon. As these last from approximately 2 to 6pm, you might find it a little hot and sunny initially, but you’ll be able to enjoy watching the sun set over the desert, which creates amazing views and photo opportunities. However, if a morning tour is what fits into your itinerary, these are available from around 7:00am.
The exception is the Cerro Blanco, for which we do recommend leaving quite early in the morning. In this particular case, it’s better to depart around 5:00am, before the sun rises, so that you can be at the dune around 10:00am.
If you would like more information regarding excursions and day trips, feel free to contact the experienced tour coordinators of Pirwa Travel at email@example.com. Or, stop by reception at our Nazca hostel for information and assistance.