Five Excellent Huaraz Day Trips and Acclimatisation Hikes

Thinking of visiting Huaraz? Then you better like hiking!

Chances are you’ve heard of Laguna 69 and, if you’re the hiking type, the Santa Cruz Trek. However, what you may not realise (and what we didn’t realise the first time we visited northern Peru), is that there are loads of excellent little day trips and hikes to do in the Huaraz region. These are particularly great option if you enjoy the outdoors but don’t love camping, or if you’re visiting in the wet season.

Here are five excellent Huaraz hikes that can be done in a day.


Laguna Paron

This is the place that won us over in a single photo - and one of the biggest reasons we ventured back to Huaraz.

Laguna Paron is stunning, and whilst getting there from Huaraz requires a little more bum-on-seat time that we’d usually enjoy, we’d do it again in a heart beat.

We’ve written an entire guide on how to visit this spectacular lake on a day trip from Huaraz, so hop on over to this post for more information

Entry Fee | S/. 5 per person

With a tour | Approx. S/. 50 per person (transport, Spanish speaking guide and two stops in small towns). If you are short on time and would prefer to book your trip in advance, this tour is a possibility.

With public transport | Theoretically possible, but not easy. We have provided bare-bones instructions in our guide to Laguna Paron, but if you’ve done it yourself we’d love to hear from you!

Tip | All hikes in and around Huaraz takes place at high altitude, so it’s essential that you give yourself time to acclimatise when you arrive. Find out more about how to avoid altitude sickness in South America.

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Pastoruri Glacier

If you know anyone who has doubts about climate change; tell them about Pastouri Glacier.

One of the last remaining glaciers in this part of South America, in another decade, it will unlikely exist at all. No longer gaining mass in the winter months, this giant block is resigned to simply shrinking, year on year, drip by drip.

So often we tell ourselves, ‘oh, we’ll do it next time’. Well, for Pastori, that next time may never come.

Located at 5000m, a visit here is no easy feat. You will get lashed with sleet and snow, lose feeling in your hands and struggle to breathe, but few who visit ever regret making the effort.

Entry Fee | Part of the Huscaran National Park, so if you don’t already have the multi-entry ticket, you will need to pay S/. 30 to enter.

With a tour | Daily tours are easy to source locally, and cost around S/. 30 per person (transport and guide only). If you would prefer to book your trip to the glacier in advance, this tour is a good option.

With public transport | It is unfortunately no longer possible to visit Pastouri with public transport.



Laguna Churup

Probably the most enjoyable little hike we did in Peru. Short enough to mean you’re back in your hostel by 2 p.m (a novelty, trust us), and with plenty of challenging aspects to keep you entertained. Not to mention the reason you’ve strapped on the boots in the first place, Laguna Churup.

For more information on how to do this day trip from Huaraz independently, check out our complete guide to Laguna Churup.

Entry Fee | Part of the Huscaran National Park, so if you don’t have a multi-entry ticket, you will need to pay S/. 30 (unless the guard has decided to take the day off, like when we visited)

With a tour | Daily tours are easy to source locally in Huaraz, and cost around S/. 30 - 35 per person (transport and Spanish speaking guide only). However, we would strongly recommend against joining a tour for this hike as it simply isn’t necessary.

With public transport | Very straightforward, it involves a colectivo from Huaraz directly to the trailhead at Pitek. The van then collects you at an agreed time once you’ve finished the hike. .The cost is S/. 10 each way, but more details on how to reach Laguna Churup from Huaraz can be found in our guide.

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Laguna 69

As we said in our intro, if you’re looking into visiting Huaraz, then chances are that you’ve already heard of Laguna 69 - and for bloody good reason. Sitting at the end of a 7 km hiking trail is perhaps the most famous of Peru’s many beautiful glacier lakes. Edged by snow-capped peaks, and increasingly popular amongst tourists, it is still more than worth the relatively challenging high-altitude hike required to reach it.

For more information, check out our complete guide to Laguna 69 - or take a look at these drool-worthy photos.

Entry Fee | Part of the Huscaran National Park, so if you don’t have a multi-entry ticket, you will need to pay S/. 30.

With a tour | Daily tours are very easy to source in Huaraz, and cost between S/. 30 - S/.35 per person. Please note however that the tours are essentially just providing transport to/from the entrance and a guide to try to keep everyone to the schedule. If looking to book a tour to Laguna 69 in advance, this is a good option.

With public transport | We visited Laguna 69 independently in 2016, but a tour is now actually cheaper and easier to reach the lake, so we don’t recommend doing it independently.



Laguna Llanganuco

Situated in the heart of the Cordillera Blanca, between the towering peaks of Huascaran and Huandoy, are the spectacular Llanganuco lakes. For us, this is the day trip that got away, and if we’d been able to spend just one day longer in Huaraz, it is here that we would have roamed.

Entry Fee | Part of the Huscaran National Park, so if you don’t have a multi-entry ticket, you will need to pay S/. 30.

With a tour | Daily tours are easy to source in Huaraz, and cost around S/. 30 - 35 per person (transport and Spanish speaking guide only). If you would prefer a longer tour, or one that allows time to experience other interest points in the area, we can recommend this one.

With public transport | We have read that this is possible as a public bus runs to the lakes, however we’re unable to find specific information. If you’ve done this, please let us know in the comments so we can help future visitors.

Did you know | Most travel insurance policies exclude cover for activities at high altitude. Make sure that yours is up to scratch for your South America trip - both True Traveller and World Nomads offer coverage options for high altitude hikes.


 

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If you're planning a trip to Peru and love to hike, you have to add Huaraz to your itinerary. Here are five day hikes you can't miss!
 

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