Paracas National Reserve in Ica Peru

Paracas National Reserve

The Paracas National Reserve is located 22km (20 minutes) from the Pisco city in Ica (or 261km from Lima) and is the only reserve protecting a section of Peruvian coastline and Cold Water Ocean. Its 335 000 hectares extend from the Paracas peninsula to the point at Morro Quemado, south of La Independencia bay.

It includes many salt flats, beautiful beaches, rocky points and some of the richest ocean waters on earth. The species finding refuge here include seals and sea lions (Arctocephalus australis and Otaria byronia), Humboldt penguins (Spheniscus humboldtií), sea otter or chingungo (Lutra felina), dolphins and porpoises, and over two hundred species of seabirds, both resident and migratory. Some of the latter are the Andean condor (Vultur gryphus), flamingoes or parihuanas (Phoenicopterus chilensis) and the biggest producers of guano, or bird dropping fertilizer (cormorants, boobies and pelicans).

Next to the reserve, 18km (15 minutes) from Pisco via paved highway, it is the small beach resort of Paracas bay. This was the spot where the patriot forces under General Jose de San Martin landed in 1820.

Ballestas Islands
A group of small islands, they are located outside the reserve area approximately 1 hour, 30 minutes from the coast. They constitute the habitat of a great variety of birds and sea lions, which you can approach by motorboat.

The Candelabrum
An enigmatic, candelabra shaped etching in the sand on a hill of the Paracas peninsula, facing the ocean. Some believe it is related to the Nasca lines, but that is unlikely, as it has been proven more recent. Some believe it was a signal used by pirates. It is usually seen from the ocean (on the way to the Ballestas Islands), although it is possible to see it from land by following the packed dirt road that goes north west from the Atenas beach.

Paracas Visiting Regulations

To help with preserving this invaluable natural reservation and cultural heritage site, we recommend you bear the following in mind:

•Bring drinks in canteens only
•Do not bring food or eat within the reservation
•Put litter in the indicated trashcans
•Do not disturb the site’s plant and animal species
•Do not contaminate water sources
•Walk only on the signaled circuits

Recommended Paracas Tours

After a detailed review of the commentaries and experiences of our passengers, we can recommend the following Paracas tours. We are really sure. you will enjoy as much as them.

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