A top destination for international trekkers and climbers, Huaraz  is full of high quality hostels. Prices for lodging and transport double or even triple during high season and the national holidays July 25–August 5. To get into some hotels, you’ll need to make reservations three months in advance.
Familia Meza Lodging (Lúcar y Torre 538, tel. 043/42-6763 familiameza_lodging [at] hotmail [dot] com, US$8 pp) has private rooms with shared bath in a safe and pleasant building just a block from Luzuriaga. Features include a terrace with views, a fully-equipped, open-air kitchen, and laundry service. This hostel is run by one of Huaraz ’s most friendly families, which operates a plethora of recommended businesses out of an office downstairs: the Sierra Verde Spanish School, Mountain Bike Adventures, and the Last Minute Gift Shop.
Jo’s Place (Daniel Villazón 276, tel. 043/42-5505, josplacehuaraz [at] hotmail [dot] com, US$11 s, US$14 d) is north of the Río Quilcay and about a 15-minute walk from city center. Here Jo Parsons, a British expat, and his Peruvian wife have created a friendly and relaxed collection of rooms that ring a hammock-filled garden. All guests have access to a simple shared kitchen, WiFi, a TV and DVD room with books, laundry service, and long-term storage space. Rooms with shared baths are US$5.50 pp, and the newest rooms have mountain views.
Backed against the Cordillera Negra , Edward’s Inn (Bolognesi 121, tel. 043/42-2692, www.edwardsinn.com , US$12.50 s, US$25 d) has the feeling of truly being near the mountains. The quiet hotel has gardens, a small café, and an excellent view into the soccer stadium. Breakfast is available for US$3 (Continental) or US$3.50 (American). Simple rooms have private bathrooms and solar-heated hot water. Cheaper dorm rooms cost US$7.50–10. The Peruvian owner, Eduardo Figueroa, is a certified guide and resource for treks, climbs, and arrieros.
B y B My House (27 de Noviembre 773, tel. 043/42-3375, bmark [at] viabcp [dot] com, US$11 pp with breakfast) is a charming home tucked away in a central, but tranquil, neighborhood. The six rooms spiral around a sunny courtyard. Beds are comfortable, and rooms have a writing desk and private baths. The hostel is in the home of Alcides Ames and his wife, Francisca. Alcides, who speaks mostly French, is a longtime Huaraz resident and one of the area’s foremost glaciologists. He has climbed nearly every peak in the Cordillera Blanca.
The popular, family-run Churup Bed and Breakfast (Amadeo Figueroa 1257, La Soledad, tel. 043/42-4200, www.churup.com , US$23 s, US$32 d with breakfast) has 16 simple rooms intermixed with nicely furnished sitting areas, a top floor lounge, and even a foosball table. The book exchange, laundry area, shared kitchen, equipment rental, and Spanish classes are likely to tempt you out of your room and into conversations with other travelers. Owners Nelly and Juan Quiros and their son Juan Manuel, a trekking guide, serve a fortifying breakfast and offer cheaper bunk rooms downstairs (US$6 pp) without breakfast.
A solid favorite among climbers is La Casa de Zarela (Julio Arguedas 1263, tel. 043/42-1694, www.lacasadezarela.com , US$27 s or US$32 d). Spiral stairs lead up from a sunny courtyard to rooms and terraces with spectacular Cordillera Blanca views. The 17 rooms are simple but a good value. There is WiFi, and breakfast is served in the homey downstairs area, with very good coffee, the best burritos in town, and a great variety of herbs and teas. There is also a bar. A rooftop kitchen is available for the use of all guests.
Huaraz native Tito Olaza has guessed the traveler’s every need, and answered it in his intimate, nine-room guesthouse Olaza’s Bed & Breakfast (Julio Arguedas 1242, tel. 043/42-2529, www.olazas.com , US$29 s, US$32 d with breakfast). The water’s hot, the shared kitchen is sparkling, and the fourth-floor lounge has a DVD player, fireplace, and fridge full of cold beers. Breakfast is served on the sunny rooftop patio, and views of the mountains are explained on a notecard that accompanies your hot coffee. Tito has plans to add a mellow, evening café.
Hotel Colomba (Jiron Francisco de Zela 210, tel. 043/42-1241, www.huarazhotel.com , US$85–100 d), once a hacienda, has been converted into a series of large rooms spread out through a labyrinth of gardens and grassy lawns. Lucho and Sylvana Maguiña, the Peruvian-Argentine owners, are extremely generous and kind. And with all the birds, peace, and quiet, you might think you were in the countryside. This hotel is north of the Río Quilcay and a few minutes’ taxi ride into the center.
A bit out of the town center, San Sebastian Hotel (Italia 1124, tel. 043/42-6960, www.sansebastianhuaraz.com , US$52–58 s, US$66–70 d with breakfast) is a very relaxed, safe option. All rooms have been recently built or remodeled, so bathrooms are new and beds are plushly covered with duvets. The main lobby has Internet, WiFi, big sofas, and a TV with DVD player. The adjoining breakfast room doubles as a cozy pizzeria in the evening.
The distinctively Swiss Andino Club Hotel (Pedro Cochachín 357, tel. 043/42-1662, www.hotelandino.com , US$100 s, US$121 d) is the luxury hotel of Huaraz , with an elegant lobby, great views, and a very good international restaurant. Room styles vary according to location within the hotel, and it is worth asking in advance which services your room will have.
More expensive rooms include terraces with views and bathtubs, and there are also accessible rooms and mini apartments with kitchen, DVD player, and whirlpool tubs. Additional services include laundry, mail, free Internet, and a travel agency that rents four-wheel drives and organizes horseback riding, canoeing, and fishing adventures.
Many international climbing and trekking agencies stay here with their groups, so make reservations ahead of time.
Snowcapped peaks tower above The Lazy Dog Inn (Km 3.1 Marian Cachipampa Road, tel. 043/978-9330, www.thelazydoginn.com , US$40–80 depending on room type, with breakfast and dinner), which rests at the foot of the Cordillera Blanca . This unique bed-and-breakfast, 20 minutes outside of Huaraz , is the home of Diana Morris and Wayne Lamphier, a Canadian couple who open their stylish adobe lodge and two adobe cabins to guests. All the rooms are tastefully decorated and painted in warm colors. Amenities include WiFi access, on-site horses, and an outdoor sauna. If you coordinate your visit in advance, Diana will help you plan treks, day hikes, and horseback rides from the Inn.
The British owner of The Way Inn Lodge (15 km up the Pitec road, www.thewayinn.com , US$10 dorm, US$16 d) describes his retreat as a big playground. The eight-room lodge, 30 minutes from Huaraz , has spectacularly close mountain views, beds with cozy duvets and orthopedic mattresses, and plenty of board games to while away the hours. Horseback riding and other outdoor activities can be arranged with advance notice.