20 Best Beaches In Peru - From Popular to Hidden Gems
The tiny South American country of Peru is known for the ancient civilizations it sheltered, vibrant culture that carries its own charm, and the vast Amazon rainforest that defines the land. But look beyond Machu Picchu and the sprawling coastline of Peru will welcome you to explore its dramatic beaches. The red Playa Roja, urban Miraflores, unique Huanchaco, pristine Cabo Blanco, and surfers’ favorite Santa Rosa make for some of the best beaches in Peru. But, apart from these, the country is home to several gems hidden away from tourists. So, refer to this Peru beaches travel guide and you will know which is going to be your next sun n’ sand retreat!
1. Playa Mancora - A surfer’s paradise
The resort town of Mancora, with some of the top beaches in Peru, is everything a beach lover longs for. Turquoise water, good waves, and sandy shore entice thousands of tourists every year to visit Playa Mancora.
A surfer’s paradise and safe for swimmers, you will find plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors here. There are a number of restaurants and nightclubs along the beach, ready to combine food and entertainment. And even though Playa Mancora is easily accessible and has basic facilities, the beach has succeeded in maintaining its rustic charm.
2. Playa Malecon Pardo - Where you can relax
Playa Malecon Pardo is one of the few beaches in Peru where you can find a peaceful spot even during a high season. With a small boardwalk and food stalls offering Peruvian cuisine, it ensures you have a great time here.
Even though Playa Malecon Pardo is clean, the water here is not exactly ideal for swimming. So, when you are looking for a place to relax, head off to Playa Malecon, rent a beach chair and an umbrella, and spend a day taking in the peaceful views that define this beach.
3. Las Pocitas - A place away from the crowd
Las Pocitas is a beach that is connected to the sandy shore of Playa Mancora and yet is worlds apart from all the hustle and bustle. The rocky shore lined with palm trees and dotted with luxury hotels combine together to create a serene Las Pocitas.
Even though it lacks modern facilities, it makes up for the shortcomings with its beauty. Kids will love exploring small pools that form between the rocks and you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the lovely view of the sea. One of the top family-friendly beaches in Peru, Las Pocitas is a must-visit for all.
4. Playa Agua Dulce - Loved by tourists and locals alike
Playa Agua Dulce makes for one of the popular beaches in Peru and that means it is usually visited by hordes of tourists. If a whirlwind of beach activities interest you, then this is the place to be!
The sea is usually calm, the stretch is sandy, and facilities are abound, ensuring you enjoy your visit to Playa Agua Dulce. A bustling local fish market is located a stone’s throw away from the beach. So, the shore is sometimes busy with boats and fishermen. Visit the market to get a glimpse of the local lifestyle and enjoy different fresh seafood dishes at nearby restaurants.
5. Playa de la Mina - Favorite amongst tourists
Playa de la Mina rightfully ranks on top of the list of most beautiful beaches in Peru. It can get pretty crowded during the high season but do not let it stop you from witnessing this lovely beach.
The sight of a long stretch, full of powdery sand carrying shades of white and gold, that is backed by a steep cliff will steal your heart right away. And if you feel it is a little too touristy for your taste, go for a day trip to Ballestas Islands from here. The elegance of Playa de la Mina and the rugged beauty of islands is a perfect combination for any vacation.
6. Lobitos - Where you must ride the waves
The beach of Lobitos is a little hard to reach, but if you take some effort, it will be worth all the hassle. The beach is divided into two parts - the one where water is dotted with small fishing boats and another where strong waves that reach up to 8 feet invite enthusiastic surfers.
One of the best surf beaches in Peru, Lobitos witnesses the fun experienced as well as amateur surfers have. If you are interested in learning how to surf, then you will find several basic classes here as well.
7. Playa Roja - A vibrant red beauty
Playa Roja is a stark contrast with other Peruvian beaches. The sand here carries the vibrant shades of maroon and that makes it the ‘Red Beach’ in the country.
The red shore caught between dark blue water and low yellow cliffs make for a postcard-perfect vista. Away from all the commercialization, this beach has preserved its natural charm and pristine vibes. It is part of Paracas National Reserve and that means you cannot take a dip in the water here as it is protected. But consider hiking along different trails to see rich flora and fauna around and be in the heart of nature when visiting Playa Roja.
8. Miraflores - Best of both worlds
There are still some Peru beaches left where activities are plenty, tourists are few, and are accessible without any hassle. Miraflores tops that list with ease. Backed by magnificent brown cliffs and lined with a well-maintained boardwalk, this beach is a beauty that instantly takes you in a serene world.
The reliable surf and helpful wind have turned this beach into a treat for surfers and bodyboarders. A year-round destination that attracts locals and tourists alike, Miraflores is also ideal for leisurely walks and relaxing sunbaths. And as it is located a stone’s throw away from the city, you can explore other tourist attractions after spending a day by the beach.
9. Vichayito Beach - Escape the crowd
Vichayito Beach is located in Mancora and yet, it has surprisingly escaped tourist crowds. It is the place where you can go for a quick, peaceful getaway.
There are not many water activities that you can go for at Vichayito Beach, but horse riding and photography are a few to keep you engaged. The long stretch will caress your feet with soft sand as you walk around. There are some parts where kitesurfing and swimming can be enjoyed, but make sure the water is safe to enter as lifeguards may not always be available.
10. Pucusana Beach - A gem hidden away in a small town
A small fishing town of Pucusana is blessed with a lovely Pucusana Beach where you can go for a perfect sun n’ sand vacation. It can easily qualify to be one of the secret beaches in Peru as even though locals love Pucusana, not many international tourists discover it.
Exciting jet-skiing, leisurely boating, a fun game of beach volleyball, and a spectacular sunset - all these things combine together to create the beach of Pucusana. And when you are hungry from all the activities you enjoyed, head straight to the town where fresh and mouth-watering seafood like ceviche await to take your taste buds on a ride.
11. Los Organos Beach - For a relaxing day
The tranquil town of Los Organos is home to the beach that is loved by tourists for its local canvas. The docks are bustling with local fishermen and the shore where turquoise water splashes create a soothing sound.
When you are looking for a beach where you can spend a relaxing day and watch life go by, you can head off to Los Organos Beach. It will welcome you for a lazy sunbath or a leisurely beach walk. Try to stay here for a sunset when the sky turns into a vibrant color palette carrying shades of pink, red, and orange.
12. Punta Sal - Longest Peruvian beach
Punta Sal, with its white sand and clear water, is among the prettiest beaches along the coastal village of the same name.
With a shoreline that stretches for more than 6 kilometers, Punta Sal Beach makes for one of the longest beaches in Peru. It means no matter how many tourists flock here, you are bound to find a peaceful spot for yourself. You will also get a chance to go snorkeling and scuba diving here. And if you feel tired, then a few cocktail bars around will pamper you with fresh beverages.
13. Zorritos Beach - A summer capital of Peru
The town of Zorritos is known for its idyllic beach where palm trees lining the white sandy shore welcome you for a tranquil vacation.
Described as the ‘land of eternal summer’, Zorritos Beach has everything other Peru beaches do not offer. So, no matter when you are planning to explore Peru, summer vacation is guaranteed. If you are interested in an adventure, then go jet-skiing or surfing. If leisure is what you are seeking, then hop on a boat and go fishing.
14. Cabo Blanco - Ernest Hemingway’s muse
Cabo Blanco is that small fishing village that is said to have inspired Ernest Hemingway’s ‘The old man and the sea’. The beach that rose to fame after this claim will steal your heart right away with its serenity.
The village itself does not have many amenities. But, with waves that go up to international competition heights, Cabo Blanco Beach attracts a plethora of experienced surfers throughout the year. Though, keep in mind that the waves here are safe for beginners and amateur surfers too. The warm turquoise water is ideal for taking a quick dip.
15. Pimentel - A much-needed escape
Pimentel is one of the main beaches in the otherwise dry Lambayeque region, giving you a much-needed destination to get away from the deserted landscape of this area.
The main attraction at this beach is caballitos de totora - an ancient reed watercraft that is used by Peruvian fishermen. Apart from learning how these boats work, you will also get to understand its cultural as well as historic significance here. Keep in mind that even though Pimentel Beach is a year-round destination, the water is too cold for swimming or surfing during winters.
16. Huanchaco - Known for all things unique
The beach of Huanchaco in the city of Trujillo is probably one of the top-rated beaches in Peru as from water sports to seafood, it has something for all types of travelers.
The beach is defined by iconic caballitos de totora, the water is awarded as a World Surfing Reserve, and the village is considered to be the origin of ceviche. When a certain place is known for so many things, you can plan a trip without worrying about if you will find things to do or activities to enjoy.
17. Colan Beach - A secret Peruvian beach
Colan Beach is located in Paita District, away from all the chaos of a city and hustle and bustle of a touristy crowd.
One of the biggest Peruvian beaches, Colan Beach is clean, flat, and safe. It welcomes kids and families who are looking for a leisurely trip along with watersports enthusiasts who want to ride a wave. It is easily one of the secret beaches in Peru as not many foreigners have yet found their way to this beauty. So, visit Colan Beach and you might find an entire stretch all to yourself.
18. Santa Rosa Beach - For experienced surfers in Peru
Visit Santa Rosa Beach in the Punta Negra District and you will understand why it attracts so many local- as well as foreign-surfers.
The waves crashing against the shore are of the Reef-Break type. This type of wave is ideal for seasoned surfers only. As these are usually strong and fast, Santa Rosa Beach is not exactly a perfect destination for amateur surfers. But apart from that, you can simply laze around on this small beach and still have the best of time.
19. Playa Waikiki - A lovely urban beach
Playa Waikiki in Peru may not be as popular as Honolulu’s Waikiki, but you are guaranteed to have an exciting time here.
As it is located in Miraflores, this sandy paradise is backed by the iconic brown cliff here. You can spend a day surfing the waves, check if dolphins come to greet you, and then wait back to catch a striking sunset that turns the whole sky red. No matter when you are visiting Playa Waikiki, this lovely Peru beach will keep you engaged.
20. Playa Hermosa - Where activities are plenty
Playa Hermosa is the beach to visit if you want to have different things to do and are interested in a plethora of tourist-friendly activities.
It is only an hour away from Lima, making it a popular day-trip destination. After reaching the town, you will have to get down a number of small stairs that lead you to the beach. Take in the stunning view these stairs offer and then go to Playa Hermosa to enjoy your beach-y day. If you are looking for more, then several yacht tours are available here.
So, with this list of 20 Peruvian beaches, you are bound to find the one that calls your name!
*Some images are for representational purposes only.