Extend your Wildland Adventure tour in Peru on this escorted Amazon adventure deep into Manu National Park and Biosphere Reserve, one of the best wildlife viewing experiences in the entire Amazon rainforest. Due to its ecological diversity Manu boasts among the highest recorded bird, mammal, and plant diversity of any protected area on Earth, including 1,000 of the world's 9,700 bird species, 200 species of mammals, and 15,000 species of flowering plants. On our Manu Wildlife Camping Safari
, we are escorted by a naturalist Peru travel guide as we traverse a vast elevation range traveling by land over the Andes we make overnight stops at the Cock-of-the-Rock Cloud Forest Lodge and at the Boca Manu in the Manu foothills. In Manu National Park we stay two nights at a secluded tent camp, located close to two wildlife-rich oxbow lakes. At the Manu Wildlife Center we hike on an extensive network of trails, take nocturnal forays through the forest to a tapir clay lick blind, canoe in oxbow lakes in search of giant river otters, and climb a steel circular staircase into the rain forest canopy. Nearby are two macaw licks to photograph and observe colorful macaws from a blind. Fly to Cusco for an overnight at the end of the trip before departing for home via Lima.
Days 1-2: Manu Cloud Forest and Foothills
Depart Paucartambo and continue via comfortable vehicle across the Andes en route to the descent into the Manu cloud forest and foothills. You'll pass the stone burial chambers of the pre-Inca Lupaca people and spend the night at the Cock-of-the-Rock, a remote cloud forest lodge where bird watchers will delight in viewing Peru's national bird along with several other Andean bird species. The following day begins with a second optional jungle hike to spot birds and monkeys before we continue down the mountain and board motorized dugout canoes to continue our Amazon adventure through the lowland rainforest along the Madre del Dios River. We meet local villagers who grow coca and carve dugout canoes out of reclaimed logs before arriving at Boca Manu Lodge for the evening.
Days 3-4: Manu National Park
Travel by boat up the Manu River into the lush, pristine lower reaches of Manu National Park, a heavily protected area that boasts abundant wildlife without any traces of outside development. Home for the next two nights is the low-impact Manu Tented Camp, located approximately six hours within the park's border and styled after mobile African safari camps. Led by our naturalist guides, we'll embark on forest hikes and visit hidden oxbow lakes to look for the endangered giant river otter, 13 species of monkey and if we are lucky, perhaps spot a solitary jaguar or ocelot. A 50 ft lakeside canopy tower enables a bird's eye view of the marshy shoreline where we may spot macaws, amazon parrots, hoatzin and countless other species. This is an especially good option for photographers, coupled with the stable catamaran platform used to explore the lake's surface.
Days 5-6: Manu Wildlife Center
Set off downriver at dawn, the best time to view wildlife along the river's banks, and travel less than three hours by boat to the Manu Wildlife Center – a wildlife hamlet of 22 screened, thatched-roofed bungalows surrounded by fantastic nature trails through the forest. Over the next two days, experience this area’s colorful and diverse flora and fauna. Highlights include the Blanquillo macaw clay-lick where hundreds of tropical birds congregate to eat the mineral-rich clay of the riverbank; naturalist-guided tours through the forest in search of monkeys and tapirs at the mammal clay lick; and evening forays into the forest to search for caiman and other nocturnal life.
Days 7-8: Cusco and Departure
Transfer by boat and van to Puerto Maldonado in time for your afternoon flight to Cusco where you return for one final overnight at the Cusco Garden House Hotel which allows you to retrieve stored luggage. The following day, fly to Lima for international departure. Day rooms at the Ramada Lima Airport hotel or in the Miraflores district in central Lima can be arranged upon request, in addition to extended nights in Lima to explore this colonial city.