How to Spend 24 Hours in Paracas, Peru

A beach in Paracas, Peru
A beach in Paracas, Peru | © Mia Spingola / Culture Trip
Brandon Dupre

With islands teeming with life and one of the most beautiful coastlines that you’ll find anywhere in the world, Paracas has established itself as one of the must-stop destinations in Peru. Paracas has that unique ability to make even the most structured and strict travelers extend their stay – but for those who only have a day, here’s everything you must do to truly do Paracas right.

Start the day on the ocean

In Paracas, doing the Islas Ballestas (or the poor man’s Galapagos) is a must. Every hostel and hotel will be able to arrange the tour. The slots to do the tour are early in the morning or the afternoon. Most people don’t like the idea of waking early, but it’s a must for the islands. The seas will be more calm and you’ll have a better chance to see active sea lions – plus you only have a day. The tour itself will take you through the different islands, seeing one of the largest communities of sea lions in Peru. Make sure to bring a a hat, sunscreen and a jacket for the cool morning wind.

A geoglyph you can spot on your way to the islands

Take a break

If you chose the morning time slot, you’ll be back around 10am. Relax during this time, maybe take a dip in your pool (if you’re staying at a place with one) or check out the beach. This is always a good time to enjoy the small town – maybe go and shop.

Savour delicious dishes at lunch

Paracas has some of the best seafood in Peru. With an abundance of marine life, you’ll find every Peruvian dish done well and fresh. The fresh ceviche or jalea (fried fish) are the most popular items. Make sure to get a good meal in, because what you do next will take a while.

A look at one of the beaches in Paracas

Go on a Paracas Park tour

Paracas Park has some spectacular scenery that can be taken in on a tour – the best way to arrange this is with a taxi or with your hostel. There are buses that do the 40-hour trip to all the different beaches, but taxi is the way to go if you have some people to join you. You can go to whichever beaches you want, and spend as long as you want there.

Check out La Mina beach

This is by far the best beach in Paracas – and that’s not putting down the other beaches in Paracas, because they’re beautiful. La Mina is just perhaps the best beach in all of Peru. In term of beauty it is unsurpassed: bright clear blue waters surrounded by an orange desert that goes on as far as the eye can see. The cove protects you from the omnipresent Paracas air too, making the beach the place to be. End the day with a sunset in Paracas before your taxi takes you back to town.

La Mina beach in Paracas
culture trip left arrow
 culture trip brand logo

Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip

meet our Local Insider


women sitting on iceberg


2 years.


It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.


I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!

culture trip logo letter c
group posing for picture on iceberg
group posing for picture on iceberg

Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.

map of volcanic iceland trip destination points
culture trip brand logo
culture trip right arrow
landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.