Caraz Travel Guide

  • Caraz
    by Alberto41
  • Things to Do
    by EagleEye
  • Paron Lake, near Caraz
    Paron Lake, near Caraz
    by Alberto41

Caraz Things to Do

  • Laguna Paron

    Some 30 kms from Caraz you can either walk to this natural Laguna or rent a taxi with other people (60 soles).

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  • the mighty Cordillera Blanca

    The views from the Punta Union are among the best in all of Peru. Witness the mighty Cordillera Blanca in all it's amazing majesty.

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  • Quebrada Santa Cruz

    You might expect the alpine splendor but the first day of walking will bring you through rugged, dry scenery right out of the wild, wild west.

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Caraz Restaurants

  • Don't worry, I brought plenty of food

    Though seating is a bit uncomfortable, you cannot beat the view. Lots of noodle soups, noodle dishes, and iodine water to wash it all down. It may not sound so great but after lugging a 25 kilo backpack up a 4750m pass, it taste just fine.

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  • Maybe the 'best' pancakes I've ever got!

    It has a nice and cosy atmosphere, great location with a balcony facing the Plaza, there's even a fireplace! I like the bookexchange. A place to hang up and meet other hikers and climbers. The Cafe De Rat's, it's made of fresh coffee, coca leaves and Pisco, all of these ingredients are Peruvian traditional products.

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  • Caraz Hotels

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Caraz Nightlife

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo
    with sunsets like this, who needs nightlife

    by richiecdisc Written Jan 30, 2003

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    With gorgeous sunsets like this, who needs nightlife. The best thing to do is get up and hope for a nice sunrise, right? And besides, you will need all your energy to carry that pack all day too!

    Dress Code: Something warm, it gets cold once the sun goes down.

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Caraz Transportation

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    early morning collectivos

    by richiecdisc Written Jan 30, 2003

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    You can get a collectivo (mini bus) from Av. Centario in Huaraz, just by the bridge. They leave every day between 7:00 and 10:00 as they fill up, about every 15 minutes. It takes about two hours to reach Caraz from Huaraz. The rates vary according to the vehicle, faster ones seeming to charge a bit more. It was around two dollars but watch what locals pay, and just pay the same.

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Caraz Shopping

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    local markets are great for supplies

    by richiecdisc Updated Jan 31, 2003

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    The local street market in Huaraz provides most anything you will need on the trek and is a colorful place to observe locals too.

    What to buy: I got some good soft asian noodles which cooked quickly though were a bit heavy. I got five kilo packs, which was far too much! lol Good to buy some powdered drink mix to made the iodized water taste better. Instant noodle soups are a great way to start a meal off as they are quick for when you are hungy. Mate de cocoa tea is reportedly good for acclimatization and tasted pretty good as well.

    What to pay: The noodles are cheap as are most things at the market.

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Caraz Local Customs

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    bah bah black sheep

    by richiecdisc Updated Jan 30, 2003

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    Though you are in a National Park, the Peruvians allow farmers to utilize the land too. That's why you see gates. They aren't to keep people out, they are to keep domestic animals in.

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Caraz Warnings and Dangers

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    skull in the foreground

    by richiecdisc Written Jan 30, 2003

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    Though temperatures are not overly hot, the sun is intense at this altitude and the arid air can fool the unwary backpacker into thinking they are not thirsty. Carry plenty of water and make sure to drink it. Often cattle are not so lucky to have it.

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Caraz Tourist Traps

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    lccal kids need food but not candy handouts

    by richiecdisc Written Jan 30, 2003

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    Well, not exactly a trap. Some treks are full of kids asking for candy or some other item that previous backpackers have thoughtlessly given out. This only promotes begging but these kids didn't beg and we shared our crackers with them.

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Caraz What to Pack

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo
    yeah, that's me looking tiny

    by richiecdisc Written Feb 25, 2003

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    Luggage and bags: A good backpack is essential and don't skimp on it. You will be carrying it on your back for days and you will pay for the cheap one with a lot of pain. If you can afford it, get a good one.

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Rain gear is even more important. You can't stay warm if all your clothes get wet. Fleece is light and warm but not wind resistant. Rain gear will cut down on wind too. Thermal underwear should always be carried for emergencies. It's great if you don't ever wear it. Good socks can never be underestimated, much like good water proof boots.

    Photo Equipment: Wide angle for scenery along with a circular polarizer to cut down on glare. Zoom for the wild horses.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Good water proof tent is necessary to keep your stuff as well as you dry.

    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking

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Caraz Off The Beaten Path

  • wild horses couldn't drag me away

    One more bonus of leaving the main trail is coming across a herd of wild horses as we did on our way to the Alpamayo Base Camp.

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  • does it get better than calving...

    Making the extra effort to camp at the Alpamayo Base Camp pays off when you make the morning hike up to the actual beginning of technical climbs up the peak. You are rewared with a silt green lake half encircled with jagged peaks and a calving glacier at the far end of it.

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Caraz Sports & Outdoors

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo
    Doeen taking a much deserved break

    by richiecdisc Written Jan 30, 2003

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    Backpacking is a great sport, check it out sometime!

    Equipment: A couple of good strong legs comes in handy but mostly you need determination.

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Caraz Favorites

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  • slapping hands/taunt skin...

    The slapping of hands on taut skin intermingled with curses was the first thing I heard on the trail. The Slovenians had gotten a head start on us as we sloppily readied ourselves for the initial climb but much to their dismay they had walked in shorts into a swarm of voracious mosquitoes and were now hastily swatting for dear blood. We gladly...

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  • the applause

    Even with our less than perfect morning, we got out of the campground before a group of Dutch travelers on an organized trek, who had porters to set up and brake down camp as well as prepare their meals for them. But a head start doesn’t last long when the competition is carrying small daypacks and soon we lagged behind them with heavy and...

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  • paying the piper

    We made due and prepared a big meal to ease our understandable hunger as the sun graciously made an appearance, setting on the peaks of the valley that had played hide and seek behind the clouds all day. Darkness soon followed and we fell into a deep sleep as you can only away from mankind, with all of nature as our backyard. Another easy day...

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