Lunahuaná, a small city a couple of hours away from Lima, Peru, is one of the best places near the coast to go and spend a few days in the sun. The town is a wonderful option for people spending time in Lima looking to get away from the city noise and dirt, and it offers adventure, relaxation and delicious food for the whole family.
To begin with, Lunahuaná is an absolute treasure for adventure sport seekers. For kids and teens looking for a high adrenaline thrill, there’s nothing better than rafting in the beautiful waters of the Canete River. Don’t forget an extra change of clothes, because you will get wet! There are various tour companies in the area that offer packages for rafting – don´t try going on your own. For those that prefer to stay a little dryer, there’s also bicycle and horseback riding through beautiful mountain trails.
Not too far from Lunahaná is Pacarán, a site which offers the opportunity to get in some good fishing. If your family loves the outdoors, you can definitely connect with nature here among the beautiful river and lakes. After a day of adventure, you’ll enjoy taking a relaxing swim in the river.
Apart from adventure sports and nature activities, the Lunahuaná area also offers the opportunity to take in a little archeology sightseeing at the famous Incahuasi, Quechua for “House of the Inca,” a ruin from the 15th century. It’s considered by archeologists to be the most important fort built by the Incas in this area (located at Km 29.5 on the Cañete-Lunahuaná highway).
Other sites of interest in the area include Castillo Unanue (Unanue Castle), a Moorish style hacienda built in the 19th century. There’s also a tourist route that includes a visit to the Church of the Apostle Santiago and the Catapalla hanging bridge. While in the area, don’t forget to visit the artisanal wine and pisco shops for some delicious Peruvian spirits.
Of course, like any other province in Peru, you’d be remiss not to try the delicious foods of the area. Try the sopa chola or carapulcra de conejo (a dish made with rabbit). Or, try one of the many dishes made with fresh water crayfish, like chupe, picante de camarones or ceviche.
The climate in the area is very pleasant, typically hot in the summer with an average of about 90F and mild in the winter when temperatures stay around 78F. One thing to remember, it’s important to take insect repellent. Mosquitoes can be a real bother, especially near the lakes and rivers. Transportation to the area is easily available. If you hire a car and driver, expect to pay approximately $40 per day. Or, you can choose to take a bus, with rates of about $6 per person.