Ica with Pachacamac Ruins en route (private)
We take a private transport with a private guide to Ica, an esoteric land, one of profound religious faith, sand dunes, valleys, and sunlight.
It is an agricultural zone where we see fields of cotton, butter beans, asparagus, citrus tree orchards, and vineyards interspersed among the extensive desert area.
En route, we visit the ancient adobe ruins of Pachacamac, located about 40 kms (25 miles) south of Lima. This pre-Inca temple, dating back to AD 600-900, was a place of pilgrimage, once covering 10 km2 (4 sq miles).
Built centuries before the Incas, Pachacamac is noted for its great pyramidal temples and for the remains of frescoes adorning its adobe walls. Following the expansion of the Inca Empire, Pachacamac became an important Inca administrative centre, while maintaining its status as a religious shrine.
Pachacamac has an on-site museum with an interesting collection of pre-Hispanic relics.
PM: City tour of Ica, Huacachina Oasis, Regional Museum and local winery
In the afternoon, we take a sightseeing tour of the city of Ica, including the Main Square, Municipal Palace and the Cathedral of Ica. We continue with a visit to an old Pisco producing bodega where visitors can witness the production process and then taste different types of Pisco and wines produced by the bodega.
Then, we head to the Regional Museum of Ica, to appreciate interesting ancient relics of different cultures that developed in the region. The Museum exhibits a comprehensive collection of Pre-Columbian textiles, ceramics and artifacts from the Paracas, Nazca and Inca cultures.
Finally, we head to the Oasis of Huacachina, located 5 kms southwest of Ica. This beautiful lagoon, said to contain salts of sulphur which many claim to be curative, is completely surrounded by sand dunes.
After the excursion, we return to the hotel.
Overnight in Paracas.