Ballestas Islands

Ballestas Islands are located in front to Paracas, and are three small islands, North Ballestas, Central Ballestas and South Ballestas, each one has an approximate area of 0.12 km ². The islands are located outside the area of Paracas National Reserve.


They are rock formations that inhabit vast colonies of sea birds, Humboldt penguins and sea lions. The islands are a refuge for two varieties of sea lions, lobo fino ( Arcthocephalus australis) and lobo chusco (Otarya bironia) and other mammals.


Ballestas Islands provide habitat for a variety of birds and sea lions that can be seen easily from a motorboat. This tour is one of the most common from Paracas.

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Ballestas Islands Photos

This recommended excursion, you can come in direct contact with the virgin nature of a marine ecosystem, and see close to colonies of seabirds and marine mammals that are often grouped into hundreds of thousands, is an incredible spectacle.


These islands are accessible from the resort town of Paracas by tour boat which typically lasts 2 hours, normally the boats begin the tour at 8 am. and depend of weather conditions. During the visits it is not uncommon for the sea lions to approach the tourist boats and make spectacles for the visiting tourists. The sea lions are also responsible for a unique audio spectacle with their wolf-pack cries that echoes around the Ballestas and creates an effect of a 360 degree surrounding choir. The show is especially unique auditory. These sea lions are harmless.


Although not allowed to land in the area, the boats pass close enough to the birds and animals that are in the islands. On the way of navigation from Paracas to the islands you can see the Candelabra, a gigantic figure of a fork (50 meters) carved into a hill. While the figure is very similar to certain designs Paracas Culture, some experts who have studied do not believe that relates to the culture and consider it more of a signal made ​​by ancient sailors.


Are so numerous that it is doubtful whether a complete census. Here you can see birds such as the Humboldt penguin (Spheniscus humbolldti), Peruvian Pelican (Pelecanus thagus), guanay (Phalacrocorax bougainvillii), Peruvian booby (Sula variegata), chuitas (Phalacrocorax gaimardi) and Inca Terns (Larosterna inca).

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