Hordes of Peruvian and international tourists descend on the desert oasis town of Huacachina in droves to sandboard down the surrounding dunes, kick back by the pool, and get involved in some severe hedonism once the sun goes down. For a town of just a hundred-odd people, this surprisingly decadent village has ample places to drink. Here are the best.
Casa de Arena Bar
Backpackers gather around the pool to sip beers in the afternoon at this popular hostel, before the place really kicks it up a notch by converting into a rowdy discoteca later in the evening. Expect plenty of unadulterated debauchery from a mostly youthful, international crowd.
Casa de Arena, Av. Angela de Perotti, Huacachina, Ica, Peru, +51 56 215 274
As Huachachina’s other major party hostel, Banana’s tropical-themed poolside bar is known to go absolutely mental during holidays and weekends. The décor here is considerably more upmarket than Casa de Arenas, which creates a certain aura of sophistication as punters proceed to get completely hammered with their fellow Western backpackers.
The poolside bar at this upscale resort is a great place to enjoy a relaxed sunset cocktail or two. Thankfully, at least for some, it doesn’t have a discoteca, meaning it is considerably less rowdy than the other booze-fuelled resorts in town.
Hotel El Huacachinero, Huacachina, Ica, Peru, +51 56 217 435
Crazy name, crazier fiestas. Huacafuckingchina is as boisterous and brash as its name suggests, attracting an army of booze-fuelled backpackers and Peruvians seemingly every night of the week. Pumping Latin and Western pop tunes keep revelers dancing and throwing back pisco cocktails until the break of dawn.
Huacafuckingchina, Huacachina, Ica, Peru +51 56 232 048
The Silva House
For a more intimate vibe, pay a visit to the cozy Silva House, a cool little bar which primarily caters to those who desire a relatively subdued drinking session. Keep an eye out for happy hour specials when heady cocktails are sold at 2-for-1.
The Silva House, Huacachina, Ica, Peru, +51 56 799 149
Another popular and relatively laid-back nighttime hangout, The Pub is a great sports bar despite its rather unoriginal name. Hearty Peruvian meals and finger food really hit the spot, while the pisco cocktails are tasty and deceptively strong. Once again, generous happy hour specials ensure borderline alcoholic backpackers can get sloshed for a pittance.
The Wineries of Ica
The best place to sample Peru’s (or is it Chile’s?) national drink is on a pisco tour of the vineyards that surround the nearby city of Ica. Tours can be booked from most travel agents in Huacachina and visit a number of pisco- and wine-producing establishments over a four-hour period. Salud!