Flights: There are flights twice a week from Lima to Oxapampa, in the department of Pasco, but its $300 USD each way. By far, the most economical transport to the region is by bus, around ten hours trip time.
Buses: Four bus companies make the run each day, traveling only at night. This is because the road is heavily traveled during the day by logging and mining vehicles, and excessive traffic just passing through Lima. It’s much faster and safer at night. All buses leave Lima between 7pm and 8:30pm and arrive in “Oxa” about 6:30am.
- La Merced – Blue Bus, located in the La Victoria district of Lima, Block 15. La Merced is an OK bus, but others are preferred.
- La Molina – Pink and Grey Bus, also located at Block 15 of La Victoria
- Labato – Green Bus, located in La Victoria, Block 21, Good Company
- Movil Tours – Located on Javier Prado, just two blocks from Cruz del Sur bus terminal. It is a bit more expensive, but awesome service. It is the only bus line of the four that offers 180 degree seats. Since the busses travel at night anyway, it is a great time to sleep. On my trip to Oxapampa, I took Movil Tours. Going, I opted for the lower deck of the double decker bus, which was 80 Soles ($25) and the seats were a comfortable 160 degrees. I purchased the ticket on their website, and left the return trip open ended not knowing when I would travel back…. On the return trip, I tried the 2nd floor with the 180 degree seats for 110 Soles ($34). Definitely the way to go for a good night’s rest. If sleeping isn’t your thing, both upper and lower seats offer a tablet style screen with movies, music etc.
While most are sleeping, the route to La Merced, and Oxa winds over the Nevado Ticlio Pass at 4,818 meters (15,807 feet above sea level) The tracks of the highest railway in the world are located at the foot of Ticlio peak. The bus is heated, and the altitude is hardly noticible just sitting.
Upon arrival at the bus terminal in Oxa, there will be small moto-taxis or Tuk-Tuks as they are called in India, for 1 Sol. They can take you to your hotel, or to the taxi stand for onward travel.
What’s the best time to go to Oxapampa?
Climate: Average monthly weather in Oxapampa, Peru
On average, the temperatures are always high. Night time lows are cooler though.
- Oxapampa has dry periods in May, June, July, August and September.
- On average, the warmest month is October, just in time for Octoberfest!
- On average, the coolest month is July.
- February is the wettest month.
- July is the driest month
Typical of most towns, there is a main square lined with restaurants and hotels, as well as small tourist shops. Oxapampa was founded as a German/Austrian community in the 19th century, which shows in much of the architecture throughout the city. Its primary staple is ranching and coffee. Oxapampa is located in the (Selva Alta) or High Jungle area where the mountain foothills meet with the jungle.
Above: Half Timber style architecture.
I stayed a couple nights at Hostal Cruz, on the main square. It was clean, with spacious rooms, gift shop, and offered tours. My main reason for traveling to the region was to meet with a coffee producer in Huancabamba. I actually stayed in Oxapampa on my way back to Lima. This is my first post in a series however, because Oxa is the first stop. Hotel prices range from the cheaper hostal to over $100 per night at the Egg Resort.
The little booths are used during special events and festivals. Hotels will fill quickly during festivals and concerts.
Andean woman passing through the park.
Mopeds and motorcycles are numerous, and a main form of transport for many people.
Woman taking a break on her D’Onofrio Ice Cream Tricycle.
Rustic table and stools.
The church by the main square. In older photo’s this church was covered with white siding.
Oxapampa is a launching point into the Biosphere Reserve, and the Yanachaga Chemillen National Park, to see Flora and Fauna. Much of the Reserve is closed off to human traffic to protect wildlife. Pictured below, a beautiful butterfly in a box being sold at a tourist shop.