Top 5 Cordillera Blanca Day Hikes from Huaraz, Peru

Read on for our top day hikes in the Cordillera Blanca from Huaraz. These hikes are all excellent acclimatization options for taller peaks or amazing adventures in and of themselves!

1) Laguna 69:

The hike up to Laguna 69 is the perfect day trip for all mountain and nature lovers. As you make your way up, you are surrounded by stunning views of mountains, small waterfalls, creeks, and wandering animals. It takes about 3 hours to get to the lagoon and about 2 hours to return. Most people spend around an hour at the lagoon relaxing and enjoying a wonderful picnic. If you dare to take the plunge into the lagoon, warning: it is freezing cold! There are adventurous people who do it, but just remember for your walk back– it gets cold as the sun goes down!

2) Rajucolta Lake:

Full day hike to Laguna Rajucolta at the base of the incredibly stunning and glaciated Huantsan Peak. The valley looks like Switzerland, lined with massive granite walls and dotted with happy cows munching on tall, wild grass. On the way back, enjoy a beautiful and delicious picnic lunch.

3) Lake Churup:

This steep hike is an excellent one to do for quicker acclimatization. In the morning, drive up to the Lake Chulup trail head. After a steep 3 mile hike, past small huts that provide shade and excellent vistas of the valley, arrive at the secluded glacial lake. Enjoy a snack while taking in the views and then continue up to a final vista point before heading back down.

4) Wilcacocha Lake:

This is an easy trek suitable for hikers of all fitness levels, including those with little or no previous hiking experience. Lake Wilcacocha is located just 10 kilometres south-west of Huaraz, which makes it convenient for those not wishing to venture out too far from Huaraz.
Unlike the other treks which take you to lakes in the Cordillera Blanca region, the stunning Lake Wilcacocha is located in Cordillera Negra and offers one of the best views of the Cordillera Blanca mountain range. You are presented with seemingly endless views of the numerous snow-capped peaks that line the horizon, and you will then understand why Cordillera Blanca is also known as “the White Range” in Spanish.

5) Llanganuco Lakes and Refugio Pisco (one or two days):

Wake up early and drive 2.5 hours to Cebollapampa. On the way, pass through an epic canyon of granite walls and the two electric turquoise lakes of Llanganuco. Local lore says the lakes are the tears of the male and female mountains on either side who were forbidden to be together. Upon arrival at Cebollapampa, enjoy a beautiful picnic breakfast.

Then set out up into the mountains on the Pisco Mountain climbers’ trail towards Refugio Peru. Enojy continuous vistas of staggering, glaciated peaks many of them jutting up over 6000 meters.

Arrival at Refugio Peru: a picturesque oasis at the base of Pisco Mountain and several other massive mountains. Enjoy lunch in the cozy dining area and then scamper further up the morraine to get an even better view of Pisco.

In the evening you will be treated to 360 degrees of mountainous splendor lit up by the magical alpine glow. Watch in awe as the sky turns from orange to peach to pink to finally an opaque grey. Then the real show begins as the Milky Way marches across the sky. Back inside, enjoy hot showers and have a delicious dinner before curling up in your cozy bunks for the night.

Want to plan your next adventure to the Cordillera Blanca? Contact us!

Also, check out some of the treks we offer in this area here:

  1. 6-Day Best of the Huayhuash Trek
  2. 4-Day Cordillera Blanca Trek / Santa Cruz Loop

Don’t see what you want? Contact us for a custom itinerary.

Your friendly Peru expert,
Gretchen

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