The Nazca Lines

nazca lines

Peru is home to Machu Picchu, one of the 7 new wonders of the world, which draws visitors from around the world.
But if you ask any traveler, Machu Picchu could be on equal footing with the Nazca Lines, the desert landscape feature in the southern part of the country. Although the incredible carvings have yet to be dated exactly, it’s estimated that they originated between 500 BC and 500 AD from the Nazca civilization that existed at the time. Although no one is certain, the experts believe that the vast carvings in the land had religious purpose to the Nazca people. From simple lines to geometric and zoomorphic shapes, these indentations are spread across in the heart of the Ica desert of southern Peru, some stretching to 1,200 feet (about as long as the Empire State Building).

How to Get There

First, you’ll need to fly into Lima – Peru ( Jorge Chavez International Airport) then take a bus 277 miles (446 km) down the Panamerican Highway to the Ica town and then to Nazca.
On the way from Ica to Nazca you will be passing through the middle of the Nazca lines without realizing it and you will see several Observation metallic towers, The best way to see the Nazca Lines is from the air. There are multiple daily flights, lasting about 35 minutes each, that depart from (Maria Reiche Neuman Airport) is a small airfiel located in Nazca, the airport is mostly used for tourism for the Nazca Lines. There are also flights from “Las Dunas” aerodrome from Ica.

The best way to explore the Southern Desert of Peru may be done in 2 days without rushing and visiting all the places along the way.

Travel from Lima to Paracas and visit the famous Ballestas Islands by boat where you can find marine fauna such as sea lions, tendrils, guanay, pelicans, starfish, Humboldt penguins. 

ballestas islandsAfter your tour, travel for 1 hour and 15 minutes to the Oasis of Huacachina where you can do Sandboarding, Dune Buggy or just take the beautiful photographs such as the sunset. Throughout your trip you could also visit the artisanal wine and Pisco wineries, since you will be passing grape farms where the Peruvian wines come from. Following, you can go to the Nazca town to spend the night.

The next day before the overflights to the Nazca lines you can visit the Nazca aqueducts, this system was built about 1,500 years ago by the Nazcas cevilization in the middle of one of the driest and arid desert territories in the world, where there is no surface water for most of the year. The water obtained by means of ingenious aqueducts served not only for human consumption but also to irrigate the cultivated fields, with which fertile oases were generated in the middle of the immense desert. Today it is still used by the Nazca people. Finally, after your overflight of the Nazca lines, you can return to Lima or continue your trip by bus to Arequipa, Cusco.

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