We spent a couple of nights in Huacachina. The energy of the whole place is pretty great and we loved our dune-buggy tour (booked through Sunset Hostel). However, nothing topped the one thing we were able to do for free in this desert oasis.
As we had finished our dune-buggy tour and were going separate ways from the other people in our group one guy asked if we were staying another night. We were of course, but planned on moving on the next day. He then uttered one of the most vile sentences in the English language: “You should get up at 5am”. Vomit. We both laughed and said “Yeah, okay!”. He was adamant though and further pleaded his case…
His recommendation was not of course to just get up at an outrageous hour for no reason… it was to climb a sand dune and watch the sun rise. Now this threw us off. The dunes are big and looking at the one he told us to climb, we were thinking it would take an hour to reach the top. We hadn’t been doing as much hiking lately and this seemed a bit too energetic for that time of day.
However, he pushed the idea…it’s the best thing he’s ever seen… if he was staying another night he would wake up and do it again… blah blah.
We were sold.
We woke up before the crack of dawn and began the hike up the massive dune that towers over Huacachina. It was challenging. It was sweaty. It was SOOOOO worth it. After about 30 minutes we had reached the top and perched ourselves on a ridge of sand to watch the magic happen. We spent the next hour and a half taking it all in. The sun slowly began to peak over the mountains in the distance. Shadows appeared on the sand dunes; at first really long then eventually began to shorten. Ica transformed from a city lit by street lights to one draped in the fog creeping over the mountains. The silence of early morning disappeared as car horns and roosters took over.
As an added bonus, the run down the dune back to town was awesome! Throwing caution to the wind and letting gravity do it’s job gets you to the bottom in about 30 seconds.
If we stayed another night in Huacachina, we would probably do it again too. The fact that it didn’t cost anything made the beauty of that sunrise just a little sweeter.