Huaraz Travel Guide
Huaraz © Judith Duk
The resort destination of Huaraz is the most important hiking and climbing centre in Peru and is situated in the valley of Callejón de Huaylas at the foot of the Cordillera Blanca mountain range. Set at an altitude of over 10,000 feet (3,000m), it is surrounded by snow-covered mountains and icy blue lakes, which has earned it the moniker the 'Switzerland of Peru'; however, it does not fit the typical image of a lofty alpine village. Its rather shabby appearance can be blamed on the destruction caused by several massive earthquakes, but it has a lively atmosphere and a spectacular setting, and is the ideal base from which to organise day walks in the valley or longer hiking expeditions into the mountains beyond. Huaraz town is well set up for outdoor tourism and there is a multitude of hiking shops, guide services and information offices, as well as a wide choice of hotels. While on holiday in Huaraz, one of the most beautiful and popular day excursions in the Cordillera Blanca is the trip to Lagunas Llanhanuco, and for longer hikes, the scenic four or five day Llanhanuco to Santa Cruz loop is the most well travelled.