In order to preserve its huge diversity of flora and fauna and pristine areas, Manu was declared a National Park in 1973, designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1977 and made a World Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. It covers an area of 1.5 million hectares and is one of the largest protected areas in South America . It is situated in a spectacular, untouched area of south-eastern Peru and is possibly the sole, accessible piece of pristine rainforest that exists in the world today; a number of indigenous tribes who have never had contact with outsiders also continue to live in the Park.
Runs from April to December, the price for this trip Please contact us
Travel insurance is a requirement for all clients
Day 1: Cusco - Amazon Pona Lodge
Our overland adventure journey to amazon jungle begins very early, we will pick you up around 5:30 am from your hotels in Cusco in our private transport. Today’s destination is the lush cloud forest region where the Andesfall away to the Amazon basin. This is a day of scenic drama and striking contrasts. We first stops to see mountain villages, a hilltop necropolis of chullpas (pre-Inca burial chambers), and the abrupt ridge top of Ajanaco, which marks entrance to Manu National Park and the access point to one of the most protected natural areas in the whole of South America.
After a picnic lunch near here we descend through the startling and rapid environmental transformations characteristic of the tropical Andes, passing from grassland and stunted trees through elfin forest, until we wind through a lush and magical world of overhanging trees, giant ferns, monster begonias, countless orchids and bromeliads, and a diverse and teeming birdlife. Our first night, we will stay at Amazon Pona Lodge. L:D
Day 2: Amazon
Pona Lodge - Boca Manu
Rising early and then scout for birds, and perhaps Brown Capuchin Monkeys or Dusky Titi Monkeys along the nearby road. After breakfast we continue our drive, then we visit a plantation of coca (the sacred leaf of the Incas), and then to the local farmers. Later we reach Atalaya, a tiny port where the Piñipiñi River, Carbon River meets the Alto Madre de Dios. Now the lowland rainforest part of our journey begins. Rivers are the highways of the rainforest, and henceforth we will travel in large, comfortable dugout canoes shaded by canopy roofs and driven by powerful outboard motors. our route in the boat offers sightings of new birds - terns, cormorants, White-winged Swallows, and flocks of nighthawks flushed from their daytime lairs by the sound of our engine.
As night falls the whistling call-and-response of tinamous gives way to the loud shrill of cicadas. B: L: D
Day 3: Boca Manu –
Casa Matsiguenka Lodge
We make a short visit to the village of Boca Manu, riverside capital of the remote and sparsely populated Peruvian province of Fitzcarrald. The main activity here is building dugout boats for travelers on the river, and we see how these sturdy craft are made. Logging is prohibited here, so the resourceful villagers work entirely with lumber brought downriver by floodwaters.
Then we turn northward up the chocolate-brown waters of the Manu River into the lake-rich lower Manu National Park. The pristine quality of the forest is instantly apparent, with abundant birdlife and no signs of outside development.
With a brief stop at the park ranger station at Limonal to present our permits, and then proceed upstream for about five hours up the Manu River beaches, which, especially in dry season Orinoco Geese and Horned Screamers strut on the beaches, Capped and White-necked Herons patrol the shoreline, and countless sunbathing turtles dive off their log perches as we approach.
After hours on the river
we reach Casa Matsiguenka or Albergue Machiguenga, a
simple but comfortable low-impact lodge nestled almost
invisibly in the forest.
Time permitting, we will take a short walk before dinner to stretch our legs and enjoy our first encounter with virgin rainforest. B: L: D
Day 4: Manu National
Park (Casa Matsiguenka) - Salvador Lake & Otorongo Lake
Today we visit two lakes near our camp. Park authorities determine the time of our visit to Cocha (Lake) Salvador; depending on this schedule, we will visit Cocha Otorongo earlier or later in the day.
Our trail to Cocha Otorongo begins some 30 minutes downstream from the camp. This brief river journey to the trailhead can always offer the chance of a thrilling wildlife sighting. Perhaps we will spot a family of Capybaras,the world’s largest rodent, browsing on the riverbank, or if we are very lucky, a solitary Jaguar might stalk slowly off an open beach into the forest, flicking its tail in annoyance at our intrusion.
On the short trail to the lake we may spy one or more of the park’s 13 monkey species leaping through the canopy high above. And some of the trees which form that canopy -- such as kapok, ironwood and figs, will astound us with the vast size of their trunks and buttressed root systems.
These are oxbow lakes, formed when the river changed course, leaving a landlocked channel behind. The lakes are abundant in fish and wildlife, and provide optimum habitat for caimans and the Giant Otter (Pteronura brasiliensis), one of the Amazon’s most endangered mammal species.
This lake enjoys maximum protection, and boats are not allowed. However, it features two dock platforms and a 50ft tower from which to scan the trees and marshy shoreline for monkeys, kingfishers, Anhinga (a large, long-necked waterbird), and countless other species. We have a good chance of sighting the resident Giant Otter family as they dive for the 4Kg. of fish that each individual consumes daily.
Cocha Salvador is the largest of the area’s lakes, at 3.5 Km, or some two miles long. It is also home to a family of Giant Otters. We cruise the lake on a floating catamaran platform, which offers superb new perspectives of lake and forest. The lakeside trees are often alive with monkeys; Scarlet, Chesnut-fronted and Blue-and-gold macaws beat a path overhead; a variety of herons and egrets scout the water’s edge; and the reptilian eyes and snouts of caimans, motionless as logs, may be spied beneath the branches. Somewhere on the open water or in among toppled bankside trees, we may spot the sleek heads of the shy Giant Otters. These social animals play and fish together, and we may see them sprawled on a fallen tree trunk, dozing or gnawing on a fish. We will spend the night at Casa Matsiguenka. B: L: D
Day 5: Manu National
Park (Casa Matsiguenka) – Tambo Blanquillo Lodge
We set off downriver at dawn. At this hour chances of wildlife encounters are excellent. We return to the Limonal park station, to file our wildlife report before leaving the park and then we will head off to visit the Blanquillo Macaw Clay Lick, which is known as one of the largest Macaw Clay Licks in the Peruvian Amazon. After six hour we arrive to Tambo Blanquillo for the night. We will spend the night at Tambo Blanquillo Lodge. B: L: D
Day 6: Blanquillo
Macaw Clay Lick and trail system
Another early start (inevitable on wildlife expeditions), after a delicious breakfast is followed by a short boat ride downstream. We walk through the forest for some minutes, where we find the Macaw Lick. The hide provided with individual chairs and a convenient place for cameras and binoculars is our ringside seat for what is usually a spectacular show. In groups of twos and threes the scarlet Macaws come flapping in, landing in the treetops as they eye the main stage below - the eroded clay banks of the river and the occasional villain, a menacing and unwelcome Great Black Hawk. The drama plays out in first in tentative and then bolder approaches to the lick, until finally nearly all the macaws form a colorful and noisy spectacle on the bare banks, squabbling as they scrape clay from the hard surface. After this we continue walking and exploring on the network of trails surrounding the lodge then we return to the lodge for lunch.
Later, we continue to explore and discover the rainforest, its lore and plant life, on the network of trails surrounding the lodge, arriving in the late afternoon at our 34m/112ft Canopy Tower. On its platform we witness the frantic rush-hour activity of twilight in the rainforest canopy, before night closes in. This evening, from the late afternoon until after Dinner, we offer an opportunity to search for caiman and other nocturnal life along the riverbank by boat, if the level of river allows it. We will spend the night at Tambo Blanquillo lodge. B: L:D
Day 7: Tambo
Blanquillo – Teparo Ecological Reserve
We leave our lodge very early on the five hour and half return boat trip upstream to the Teparo Reserve a local conservation area, the breakfast will be serve on the boat while you enjoying early morning wildlife activity as we go, of course this is a perfect time to take advantage of valuable early morning wildlife activity along the river, in additions this journey allows us to see several lowland native settlements. We will spend the night at the Teparo Ecological Reserve. B: L: D
Day 8: Teparo
Ecological Reserve – Cusco
We will leave from Teparo Ecological Reserve early in the morning by our boat and then van and head directly to Cusco, passing through cloud forest, where we can do some sight-seeing, and arriving in Cusco at approximately 7:00 pm. B: L:
. Pick up and drop off at your Cusco Hotel
• Private boat and bus
• Rubber boots, and rain ponchos
• All accommodations and Lodges
• Bilingual naïve guide from the jungle
• Mineral water all the time
• First aid kit
• 3 meals per day included vegetarian option
• Entrance to Teparo Ecological Reserve
• Entrance fee to Manu National Park
• Entrance to Blanquillo Macaw Clay Lick
What you need to take:
• Sleeping bag
• Repellent with a minimum of 40% deet
• Good binocular
• Camera with extra batteries
• Flashlight with extra batteries
• Sun lotion
• Pocket money
• Water bottle
• Sun hat
• Swimming suit
• Small towel
• Long sleeved T-shirt
• Toilet paper
• Dark color clothes.
Note: The order of the activities mentioned in this program may change according to weather conditions. In the Jungle the climate is highly unpredictable, especially during rainy season, and weather conditions may affect the program as the animals as well are affected in their daily activities by the rain. Don’t hesitate to talk with your guide about it to maybe change the order of the activities or find alternative things to do in case of extremely bad weather! And remember, we have no responsibilities on climate and on the amount of animals that you will see: enjoy the jungle and good luck!
Pre-departure briefing the night before of your trip at your hotel with your tour guide.