Top Three Beaches In Peru

Terra Explorer
July 4, 2022

Today, at Terra Explorer, your trusty luxury travel advisors in Peru, we gathered our experts to list the top three best beaches in Peru: From peaceful Caribbean-like spots, to wild surfing destinations. Let’s dive in.

Best Overall: Punta Sal And Vichayito


Why? → The further you go north, the better the beaches are. And so, the northern Peruvian coast boasts crystalline aquamarine waters, summer weather all year round, and dazzling hotels by the ocean. 

The best two beaches in Peru, though, are Punta Sal and Vichayitos —the latter, a little bit further south, near Mancora. Both are similar: not too crowded —especially from May to September— the sands are a light beige, and greenery surges beyond the shore. 

How to get there? → You must take a two-hour flight from Lima to the Tumbes airport. Then, take a three-hour car ride through the Panamericana highway. 

What is there to do? →  The waters are not cold nor too wavy. This is a perfect place to surf serenely, practice stand-up paddle, or do kite surfing. There are also a pair of places where one can dive alongside turtles. And, between July to November, one can spot humpback whales jumping up and splashing around a couple hundred meters from the shores.

Best For Surfing: Chicama

playa chicama

Why → Well, these are the longest left waves in the world: 2.5 miles —enough to ignite your legs after a minute or two of surfing. And although the waves don’t usually barrel, the length makes up for it. And yes, there’s a strenuous paddle back, but that’s why having a raft or boat around is recommended. 

How to get there? → Take the one-hour flight from Lima to Trujillo and then drive another hour and a half to Chicama —often called, too, Malabrigo Port

What is there to do? → We talked about the surfing Eden that is Chicama, but you can blend waves with cultural outings. 

There is a cornucopia of archaeological sites and Museums from the Moche Civilization —whose populace, interestingly enough, had been surfing and kayaking through these waves in ancient times, long before the Incas conquered the area; some even assert the peoples inhabiting these coasts were the first surfers in the world.

One of the Museums to visit is the one dedicated to the Lady of Cao, a Moche ruler from 450 BCE, buried with silver and gold regalia, dogs, servants, and other precious artifacts. Although we probably will never know if she was a surfer herself.

Read more about our Chicama surfing trip here.

Most Convenient: Lima’s Southern Coast

Why → These beaches are a two-hour drive away from Lima. And during the summer (December to February), they can be the perfect spots to hop on a surfboard, chill over a beach chair, and get our bellies stuffed with fresh-out-of-the-sea goodies —a reminder: Lima is often cited as the culinary capital of South America.

In the wintertime, though, the cold currents and the cloudy, drizzling weather make them spots worth visiting only if you’re absolutely craving new waves, as a fervent surfer that is. After all, these are the waters where three-time world surfing champion Sofia Mulanovich —the first Latin American woman to do so—learned how to tame all kinds of waves, which, little known fact, are much bigger during winter.

How to get there? → Simply drive south through the Panamericana Highway until you get to El Silencio and pick your favorite one from the constellations of coastal towns. Our advice: preferably, don’t go further than Embajadores

What is there to do? → These are all beach towns, so the slow-phased summer aura is in the air. The goal here is simply to take in the infinite ocean, feel the warm beige sands, and witness the cresting sun over us. 

Lima and its nearby beaches are the epicenter of the surfing scene in Peru. The waves here vary in size, how much they barrel, frequency and length. As we wrote among the lines above, wintertime (June to August) is when there are larger waves. 

Conditions might change throughout the year, but overall, La Punta, San Bartolo, and Puerto Viejo are among the favored ones. And there are, of course, some hidden gems known only to local surfers. Perhaps, one could infiltrate into the community to unveil them.

Read more about our Lima surfing trip here.

And there you have it. The top three beaches in Peru. And if you’re planning on heading down the Equator for a luxury trip to this storied nation, feel free to contact us!. Over the years, we’ve built a team of expert trip advisors, adrenaline-loving outdoor connoisseurs, and cultural personages to welcome travelers with the best Peru has to offer. 

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