‘Pico Alto’ – One of the Americas’ Biggest Waves

First it was paragliding, remember? Next up, is the turn for the best surfing waiting for you at just an hour’s drive from Lima.

The surfboard under your arm, short wetsuit, infinite waves, plenty of air… Today, we’ll transport you to the outskirts of the city to enjoy the beaches in particular, which splash the capital’s south coast. These pilgrimages where the people in Lima go are a chance to mingle and let yourself and your adrenaline go in this extreme sport. Between December and April, and with the arrival of the long-awaited summer, places like San Bartolo and Punta Hermosa reach their peak.

We are suggesting that you take a leap, to get on a surf board and go surfing by organising a perfect plan to experience with friends, which shouldn’t be missed out during your study trip round Peru. Are you up for it? Ok, well the first step is to choose the beach according to your level. Beginners should opt for San Bartolo, while those who have already started will enjoy much more in Pico Alto, as it’s there where the largest waves form in the country. In fact, Pico Alto has some of the biggest waves in America.

Pico Alto is located at the 43rd kilometre of the Panamerican Highway, and to get there in the van, you should take the South Panamerican Highway, and then take the diversion to the village of Punta Hermosa. On the other hand, if you would like to save money and travel on public transport, it’s advisable to board one of the buses that covers the journey, and goes from the district of Lima to the surrounding areas of the beaches. You can’t miss it.

To stay over at one of the beaches in the south of Lima is comfortable and cheap. There are hostels to suit all budgets in en San Bartolo and Punta Hermosa (where you’ll find Pico Alto), and remember that camping is an option outside the city of Lima. Lastly, if you want to put your name down for a surf camp, you can take it from us that Punta Hermosa is also an excellent option. In case you’re interested, take note that a week of encampment in a double room can cost around 500 American dollars per person. And what would it cost to try it for a day? A surfing lesson is usually around 20 American dollars (including material), although it’s always better to make the most of them and put your name down for several lessons, as the price of two would then go down to around 30 American dollars.

Photo: Derek Key