Summer has arrived, the ideal time to enjoy a good vacation on the Peruvian coast. And although there are a great many choices, the destinations that offer adventure and direct contact with nature are very attractive.
The National Service of Natural Areas Protected by the State (SERNANP) has therefore prepared a list of coastal locations that stand out for their exotic beaches, beautiful landscapes and abundant biodiversity.
Located in the regions of Ica, Arequipa, Tumbes, La Libertad and Lambayeque, these destinations promise to provide the visitor with an unforgettable experience. Here is a list of six of them:
Mangroves of Tumbes National Sanctuary
This natural area is located in the northern province of Zarumilla. It covers an area of 11.47 square miles and has one of the most precious natural treasures in Peru: an aquatic forest in which salt water from the sea and fresh water from the river merge in harmony. The sanctuary takes its name from the mangroves, the characteristics trees in an ecosystem whose roots are interwoven like spider webs.
Using small boats, tourists have the chance to discover the area and take a tour until disembarking at Punta Capones, considered the first beach in the north of Peru. They can in addition observe mammals like foxes, anteaters and crab-eating raccoons; as well as a wide range of birds and fish.
Bosque de Pómac Historical Sanctuary
Continuing in the north of Peru, in the province of Ferreñafe, we come to Lambayeque, the Bosque de Pomac Historic Sanctuary, which covers 22.72 square miles and houses the densest formation of carob trees on the planet. The sanctuary is perfect for activities such as trekking, cycling, and camping.
But the most attractive thing about the sanctuary is the combination of nature and history. The Sicán culture developed in this region and left 36 pyramids as a legacy. One of them is Huaca El Oro, where the Lord of Sicán and the golden mask were discovered, the hallmarks of the great power of the Sicán kingdom.
The Guañape Islands
Considered "the new jewel of nature", these islands are located in the province of Virú, La Libertad, and are home to the main sea lion colony in northern Peru. A boat trip gives visitors the chance to observe guano birds like the piquero, guanay and the Humbodlt penguin. In addition to the sea lions, you can also see the bottlenose dolphin and the humpback whale (between the months of September and November).
San Fernando National Reserve
Located in the southern region of Ica, in Nasca to be precise, this destination stands out for being the only place where the Andes and the sea converge to create beautiful beaches and an emblematic desert. The reserve is home to species such as sea lions, otters, humpback whales, and terrestrial mammals such as the Andean fox and the guanaco. It is also possible to see the Humboldt penguin, the chuita and the Andean condor, all of which are endangered species.
San Fernando has two areas. The first, on the north side, is formed by the mouths of the Ica and Grande rivers, which give life to the Ica desert with its riverside forests; here there are sandy beaches in which wetlands are formed. The second, to the south, is the San Fernando cove, the coastal hills and the inaccessible cliffs of Mount Huasipara. This mountain is the highest on the Peruvian coast, 5,872 feet above sea level.
Punta San Juan
Also located in Nasca, this reserve is considered the most productive marine ecosystem in the world, and is home to the largest colony of Humboldt penguins in Peru (there more than 5,000 to see), as well as sea lions, sea otters and guano birds, which can be seen from the two natural viewpoints in the area.
Punta San Juan is part of the Sistema de Islas, Islotes y Puntas Guaneras National Reserve, which has a circuit for observing marine fauna on a 1.5 to 2 hour walk.
Lagunas de Mejía National Sanctuary
This sanctuary is a little further south, in the province of Islay, in Arequipa, not only being the only refuge on the Peruvian coast for migratory birds from other continents, but also housing various species in danger of extinction.
The sanctuary covers nearly 2.7 square miles, with ecosystems such as swamps, salt marshes, totora reeds, water mirrors, grasslands, and sandy beaches. It is in addition the only place where birds such as the yellow-billed tropicbird, the gray-hooded gull and the common oystercatcher live.
If you liked these natural places on the Peruvian coast and want to know more, you can visit the ¿Y tú qué planes? (And you what are your plans?) website. https://www.ytuqueplanes.com/
Sources: Sernanp/ Andina