If you are in Lima and want to take a weekend getaway or go on a family outing, Huaral is the perfect place. Just 80 km north of the capital, this province, with a mild climate all year round, is home to interesting historical and natural attractions, such as the former Huando hacienda, which gives its name to the famous Huando or seedless oranges, and the Chancay Castle, with attractive terraces, patios and towers combined with modern restaurants and interesting museums.
Huaral is one of the most complete and impressive options for sightseeing near Lima in your free time. The province, located in the ‘small north’, offers beach, mountain, archaeology, adventure and much more tourist attractions to choose from, all under a calm climate and a warm welcome from residents.
Corners like the Chancay Castle and the Aucallama dunes are especially popular during the summer; vestiges of ancient cultures, such as Rúpac and Las Shicras, impress those who visit them; and areas of natural splendor, such as the Santa Rosa wetlands, are fantastic for seeing various species.
The province of Huaral is located north of Lima. In particular, the homonymous city that is its capital is located about 75 kilometers from the center of the capital.
To get to Huaral from Lima, you must take the North Pan-American Highway. You can get to this town with an interprovincial bus or private mobility. In the latter case, the trip can take about two hours.
Huaral has mild temperatures during the summer (December to March), while the dry periods go from April to December. The temperature reaches maximums of 28 °C in February and minimums of 16 °C in August.
Check out our list below with the best places in Huaral to spend an unforgettable trip:
The Santa Rosa wetlands are located in the Chancay district, a 40-hectare ecosystem that is ideal for fans of wildlife viewing, as it is home to hundreds of species of birds, as well as various specimens of vascular flora. It is an important corner to be in contact with nature.
Also in Chancay is this monumental rock and concrete castle, built on a cliff in 1924. Its 4,000 square meters of extension offer history, themed tours, swimming pools, towers, tunnels, incredible views of the sea, restaurants and even lodging and meeting rooms. reception.
Inside, special environments have been set up, such as the “Chancay Culture Museum”, which houses the most important private museum collection of said pre-Hispanic culture. Likewise, a Natural History Museum stands out, which contains one of the country’s largest collections of stuffed animals using the taxidermy technique.
Finally, you can see the “Hall of memories”, where antiques from the family that built the Castle of Chancay are exhibited, including some of the furniture designed by the founder, Doña Consuelo Amat y León, who lived in this property from the beginning.
During its more than 30 years of operation as a must-see tourist destination in the northern region, Chancay Castle has obtained different recognitions such as Cultural Center and Tourist Resource of Peru, by Mincetur in 2002, and also “Ambassador of the Peru Brand” by Promperú since 2012.
In Chancay you can also visit the charming Plaza de Armas, its churches, sanctuaries and historical museums, as well as the fishing port.
4 km from Huaral we can appreciate this old and beautiful hacienda, which in the 1960s experienced its greatest splendor and fame for the production of Huando oranges. The chapel, with its marble lions, and 200-year-old ficus trees are among its most attractive corners.
Visiting this attraction in Huaral is also a good opportunity to meet people from all over the world who constantly visit and exchange experiences at the Eco Truly Park.
This hacienda is known for being one of the most emblematic tourist spots due to the legend of its origin. Once the mother was the famous “Naranjas Huando”, today La Casa Hacienda Huando is a must-see destination.
In the lower part of the Pasamayo serpentine you can visit Chacra y Mar, a wide and quiet beach surrounded by spectacular cliffs, where you can practice all kinds of activities or relax. Nearby is the Eco Truly Park, a self-sustaining ecological community of Hare Krishna believers.
Known as the ‘Machu Picchu of Lima’, the citadel of Rúpac is located in the district of Atavillos Bajo, on a mountain 3,500 meters high. This pre-Inca site has 51 stone buildings, some of which exceed 10 meters in height. Its most spectacular monument is perhaps the Marca Kullpi castle.
This impressive citadel, with buildings up to ten meters high, made entirely of stone and located in the highest parts of the mountain, is attributed to the Atavillos, a pre-Inca culture that flourished between 1,200 and 1,600 years after Christ.
According to archaeological investigations carried out, its inhabitants had a strong religious and military influence, demonstrated in the vestiges of apparent cemeteries and temples found in the place, as well as in the situation of the complex, which allowed total control of the area.
Los Atavillos would have been conquered by the Inca Pachacútec and its riches were such that the Spanish conqueror Francisco Pizarro would have claimed them in possession for the King of Spain, calling himself the Marquis of Los Atavillos.
Due to its importance as an ancestral material heritage and regional identity factor, this archaeological site was declared Cultural Heritage of the Nation on June 25, 1999. Likewise, the Congress of the Republic declared it a tourist heritage of priority national interest in 2017.
To get to Rúpac from the city of Lima, you have to travel to the Lima province of Huaral and from there take a 75-kilometer detour to reach the town of Pampas, where the ascent to Rúpac begins.
On the way to Rúpac you will find San Salvador de Pampas, a town known as the ‘ghost town’ because it was left empty when its inhabitants moved to a nearby area. The houses are standing, but abandoned. On weekends it is reactivated and receives tourists.
The population of Pampas is located completely abandoned, accredited by many as the ghost town. The dwellings as such can be observed very abandoned but they are still standing, but nobody lives in them.
The only property that receives weekly painting and cleaning maintenance is the village chapel.
The community of Santa Catalina is home to this rural corner with pools of thermo-medicinal waters between 35 °C and 40 °C, which help combat stress and other discomforts. They contain minerals such as lithium, sodium and magnesium. Nearby you will also find restaurants and lodging.
Río Seco beach is another of the best places that the Huaral coast offers for a day of sun and relaxation. It is provided with numerous kiosks and even houses the remains of an old guano shipping port, prior to the Pacific War.
Río Seco beach is one of the most pleasant tourist places in the province of Huaral. Located between the Huaral and Huara regions, in the Chancay and Huacho regions.
On the banks of the Seco River you can find kiosks scattered throughout the enclosure, it also has showers and a parking lot. The beach is perfect to enjoy with friends and family or to relax alone while admiring the spectacular view from the coast.
Discovered in 2006, the imposing Las Shicras archaeological complex in the Chancay Valley is about 4,800 years old, making it contemporary with Caral, and was occupied for about eight centuries. The place was the scene of religious rituals, according to the researchers.
This district located on the border with Lima has a lot to offer. The sand dunes in San Graciano are perfect for adventure activities such as sandboarding and tubular cars. Likewise, there are the hills of San Juan de Aucallama, where the amancaes flourish, the birds sing and the vizcachas hide.
This cultural venue was inaugurated on July 23, 1991, and its first exhibition with the theme of Chancay culture was launched on December 9 of that year.
Over time, this museum has become one of the main centers of cultural dissemination in the northern region, while establishing itself as one of the most representative tourist resources in the entire province of Chancay. Through its collections, the museum offers an experience where the past and the present converge, embarking the visitor on an adventure through the history of Chancay and the Norte Chico.
Inside, textiles from the Chancay civilization are exhibited, representations of their productive activities such as agriculture and fishing, their architecture and daily life. Other exhibition topics have to do with the sinking of the Chilean ship Covadonga during the War of the Pacific, expressions of religiosity in Chancay, as well as current cultural manifestations.
It is a beautiful and peaceful ecological, artistic and self-sustaining community, where residents and volunteers live in harmony with nature. It is located at kilometer 19.5 of the Pasamayo serpentine, in the district of Aucallama.
This ecological farm stands out for its unique conical and oval-shaped constructions of oriental cultural inspiration made with adobe and other natural materials that are friendly to the environment and that are integrated into the coastal space near the sea where the community called “Eco Village” is located.
At Eco Truly Park, visitors can participate in sustainable activities such as organic agriculture, eco-constructions, sustainable tourism, yoga classes, spiritual and meditation retreats, oriental art, among others.
In addition to these captivating tourist attractions, the province of Huaral offers us the possibility of savoring a delicious and varied gastronomy with emblematic dishes such as pork on the stick, duck with chili, rabbit pork rinds, fried trout, among other delicacies that motivate us to return to this beautiful destination more than once.
Many are the routes that take you to Machu Picchu, but none is like the Inca Trail Tours, the most famous pedestrian path in the Americas. After flying from the capital of Perú, Lima, you will arrive in Cusco to walk for four days along a path through forests and dense fog, millenary stone steps and discovering the ruins of ancient fortifications and Inca cities, and all the time enjoying majestic views.