Nazca lines in Peru, brown earth and hummingbird

Nazca Lines, Peru: How To Find Reliable Flight Operators For The Ancient Nazca Lines

Seeing the ancient Nazca lines was definitely a highlight on our trip to Peru.

And if you are visiting the Southern part of Peru, these strange geoglyphs and mysterious figures engraved into dusty grounds will make you wonder for days. So make sure to include the Nazca lines in your Peru itinerary.

And if you would like to know how to book a reliable tour and fly over Nazca lines, you are in the right place.

We will explain all you need to know about the Nazca lines and which company to go with. Of course, also what are the Nazca Lines and the biggest questions such as who created these drawings? and why? Aliens? Were people just bored?

and arial shot with Nazca lines in Peru and little plane
Up in the air

NAZCA LINES FACT

all you need to know about Nazca lines and how to book reliable tour

The Nazca Lines are located in the desert of the Rio Grande de Nasca river basin in Peru, and the only way how you can see them is from the air.

  • The Nazca Lines are covering an area of approximately 1,000 sq. kilometers.
  • They are over 2.000 years old and UNESCO protected.
  • There are over 10.000 Nazca lines, some of which measure 30 meters wide and spread wider than 9 kilometers.
  • There are roughly 300 geometric figures, which include basic shapes such as triangles, squares, and trapezoids, as well as spirals, arrows, zig-zags, and wavy lines.
black and white photo from the plane with many wavy lines
Incredible wavy lines
  • In total, there are around 800 straight lines and some of them are 30 miles long, which is incredible and hard to grasp how the Nazca people pulled it off.
  • There are over 70 animals and plants drawing, that include a spider, llama, hummingbird, monkey, lizard, dog, whale, duck, flower, cactus tree, etc.

SEE MORE: The MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACES IN PERU which you need to add to your itinerary

THE NAZCA LINES MYSTERY

If you are coming to Nazca you will learn from a video presentation at the Nazca airport, that there are three basic types of Nazca Lines: straight lines, geometric figures, and graphic symbols.

Anthropologists think that the Nazca culture began to construct the Nazca lines around 100 B.C till 700 A.D.

Since the Nazca lines were discovered many different theories were developed to explain their origins.

wavy lines in Nazca

HOW THE NAZCA LINES WERE CREATED?

You will also learn how the Nazca people could possibly create these astonishing drawings. It could be that the Nazca people created an outline by removing the rocks from only the borders of the figures.

As desert weather brings a lot of wind, barely any rain and with the help of erosion, the Nazca lines have been greatly preserved throughout the centuries.

If you can imagine, the weather in the desert is hot and dry and Nazca people already struggled with having sufficient water, so it must have been a really hard work to be in the sun and some people struggled with dehydration.

Visiting the area around Cusco? Make sure to read our guides on: SALINERAS DE MARAS and HOW TO HIKE THE VINICUNCA RAINBOW MOUNTAIN

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THE NAZCA LINES?

Many people and scientists till now wonder what was the purpose of the Nazca Lines.

Several scientists came to the conclusion that the geoglyphs had an astronomy-related purpose. Later on, a German archaeologist María Reiche, concluded that some of the animal geoglyphs were created by the inspiration from the constellation of stars in the sky.

AND WHAT ABOUT ALIENS?

Later on, there were other scientists, like American astronomer Gerald Hawkins, who acknowledged that Nazca lines were created by aliens or for aliens known as ancient astronauts (or space travelers).

LACK OF WATER

However, there is also a theory that during a very dry period, Nazca people didn’t have enough water. The situation was so bad, that the king decided to make these kinds of drawings in the dusty ground to please the gods and ask for forgiveness to bring the much-needed rain.

That is why you will see some drawings that symbolize water and fertility.

HOW MUCH DOES THE NAZCA LINES FLIGHT COST?

There are many companies that operate flights over Nazca, and some of them are more expensive than the others. However, if you would like to do a private Nazca flight, you will be naturally expected to pay more than joining a group tour.

We paid 82€ per person to fly over Nazca lines. The flight usually takes around 30 minutes.

HOW TO BOOK RELIABLE NAZCA FLIGHT

At first, we were hesitant to fly over the Nazca lines as we read and heard some horrifying stories. Many companies were doing these tourist flights with broken aircraft which weren’t maintained regularly and not suitable for flying.

Unfortunately, some of those flights ended in tradigital accidents. In 2008 the crash killed five french tourists and in 2010 two planes crashed resulting in 13 fatalities.

a view on the runway with a few airplanes in Nazca airport
Nazca airport

Of course, since then, Peruvian tourism is making sure that tourists are safe and something like this will never happen. Since then, there are rules, including that the plane needs to fly with two pilots, the prices for the flight raised, so the company can afford to do the required maintenance.

So if you are looking at a company that does a flight for less than 80€, I would seriously reconsider.

The number one rule for booking a reliable flight over the Nazca lines, is to read reviews. Or if you know someone who visited Nazca lines, ask them about their experience.

We took a flight with Movil Air, and we really liked it and we would highly recommend it.

two people taking a photo in front of a plane and more people are getting to plane
Off we go

Once you arrive at the Nazca airport you will be asked to check-in and pay for your flight.

You will be also put on a scale. Don’t worry, it is not some diet forcing program, but this is to make sure that the staff is distributing the weight accordingly as the plane can accommodate around 12 people.

You might wait around 1 to 2 hours for your flight. During that time you can watch a very interesting documentary on Nazca lines.

We felt super safe and the plane was well maintained (the interior of course). Before our flight, we were also given safety instructions. We also met with the Pilot and took some lovely photos.

interior of a plane

Are you visiting the area of Huaraz in Peru? Then make sure to check out our guides on: HOW TO HIKE TO LAGUNA PARON, near Huaraz.

WHAT KIND OF NAZCA LINES YOU WILL SEE?

During your flight, you will be able to see many different Nazca Lines. Our pilot was very knowledgable, funny and he explained to us a bit of the story with every drawing we saw.

At the beginning of the flight, you will see many straight, wavy lines. And after your pilot will start pointing out one of the most famous Nazca drawings such as:

ASTRONAUT AKA ALIEN

an astronaut drawing on a brown earth

HUMMINBIRD

Nazca lines in Peru, brown earth and hummingbird

MONKEY

a drawing of a Nazca monkey engraved into brown earth

SPIDER

a drawing of a Nazca spider engraved into brown earth

HOW TO REACH THE NAZCA LINES FROM ICA

The easiest way to reach the Nazca lines is to get to a small town called Ica. From there, you need to take a bus to Nazca town, which takes around 2.5 hours.

We were coming to Nazca from Arequipa, and we left at 9.00 PM and arrived at 6.30 AM the next day. We went with Cruz del Sur bus company and we got a decent sleep.

LIMA

If you would like to visit Nazca lines from Lima, you need to either book a tour, or you can also get there on your own.

DAMAGED NAZCA LINES

Because the lines are located in the dry desert in Peru, they are more or less safe from destruction. However, there some slightly funny stories connected to Nazca.

In 2018, a truck driver accidentally drove over a huge portion of the Nazca lines. He crossed 50 meters to 100 meters. We are not sure why he managed to do that, but since then Peruvian government ensured stricter security and surveillance at the sites.

There was also a group of activists from the Greenpeace organization, who were trying to place a large sign that promotes renewable energy. However, they somehow managed to hit some of the rocks and caused a bigger collision and unfortunately damaged an area near the hummingbird geoglyph.

WHAT TO PACK FOR YOUR NAZCA LINES FLIGHT

PASSPORT: You need to bring your passport in order to check-in for you Nazca flight

MOTIONS SICKNESS PILLS: The plane is very small and you will be swinging side to side, which means that if you do get motion sickness easily, it is very likely that you will feel unwell. That is why, please make sure to bring your motion sickness pills. And don’t forget, to take it at least 30 minutes before your flight. We read many stories from people who weren’t being able to enjoy the Nazca line flight because of motion sickness. What a waste of money, right?

WATER: You might be asked to wait a bit before your flight, so make sure to bring some snacks and enough water with you. However, there is a small store at the airport where you can buy little things.

CAMERA: Definitely bring a camera that can focus fast enough to capture the Nazca lines. A lense with enough zoom will be helpful as well.

WHERE TO STAY IN NAZCA?

If you would like to stay in Nazca for one night, you definitely can. There are only a few hotels and we definitely recommend you book ahead. Nazca is a small town, but there are also a couple of restaurants.

We didn’t stay in Nazca, as we continued to Ica, as we would like to stay a couple of nights in Huacachina oasis. We wrote a full guide about Huacachina, so make sure to check it out before you go.

CHECK ALL HOTELS IN NAZCA

Enjoy your time in Nazca. We hope that you will have a wonderful flight over the Nazca lines in Peru. I am wondering what theory you will come up with?

Was it aliens? Definitely let us know in the comments.

Also, don’t forget to pin our guide to the Nazca lines in Peru.

Gigi and Nico signature in pink

DISCLAIMERPlease note, that some of the links mentioned above are affiliate links and we will earn a little percentage of the sale if you purchase through our links at no extra cost to you. This helps us to keep our website running. We highly appreciate your support.

About the author
Since I was little I always wanted to see the world. Travel to new places, get to know new cultures, see how other people live. I love beaches and I love discovering tropical destinations. That is why, together with my partner Nico, we created this blog to share with you the most beautiful beaches and stunning holiday destinations which we visited during our travels.

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