Amazon Travel in Peru
Peru is well known for the incredible Inca citadel of Machu Picchu situated among the heavens on the mountaintops of Cusco. It is also known for the mysterious Nazca Lines found on the Ica desert that have inspired many imaginative stories. However, the Amazon has been quietly gaining importance for Peru travelers over the last few years.
For decades, Peru’s traditional landmarks have shaped much of Peru’s tourism offering. Today, ecotourism in the Amazon Rainforest is becoming more and more sought-after because people are drawn to the lively biodiversity of the region, the exhilaration of adventure experiences and the comfort and level of service provided by operators in the area.
Here is a guide to some of the places you can visit and activities you can do in the Amazon of Peru. For information on Amazon Travel packages, please click here:
Tambopata, Madre de Dios
The Tambopata National Reserve in Puerto Maldonado in the Madre de Dios region of Peru is the doorway to one of the world’s most remote and extraordinary Amazon Rainforest environments. It is part of a 3.7 million acre reserve in the Peruvian Amazon Rainforest created in 1990.
There are several lodges in the area ranging from basic to luxury lodges providing all-inclusive packages that cater to the naturalist or the adventurer. Activities include excursions, kayaking or canoeing, visiting local communities, nightly walks or river excursions, and even canopy tower or canopy-bridge experiences. Packages range from 3 to 5 days.
Amazon River, Loreto
The Amazon rainforest constitutes over half of the planet’s remaining rainforest. The Amazon River is the life force of the forest, rising in the Peruvian Andes and winding its way east over the northern half of South America until it reaches the Atlantic Ocean. One can experience this life force aboard a river cruise along the Amazon River and its adjoining rivers, and even visit the Pacaya Samiria Reserve, the largest flooded forest in the world.
Cruises typically offer 4 to 5 day vacation packages and with soft adventure experiences along the way. One can go fishing for piranhas, seek out endangered pink dolphins, go on nature walks, visit local villages, and enjoy amazing scenery onboard the ship.
Kuelap Fortress and Gocta Waterfall, Amazonas
The Kuelap Fortress (built in the 6th century AD) belongs to the Chachapoyas pre-Inca culture and is located at a mountaintop at 3,000masl. This is an amazing archeological site between the Andes and the Amazon basin, also famous for the height of its cut stonewalls with anthropomorphous and animal motifs. The Gocta waterfall, the fifth highest in the world at 771m/2,530ft high, was only recently discovered in 2006, and was heralded as America’s newly accessible and most pristine ecological and archeological destination.
The tourism offering is still basic.
The Manu National Park, Madre de Dios
Declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO, its surface reaches 1’532,806has/3’787,646 acres, and it is an indescribable place of natural beauty with unique flora and fauna. Manu is the feast of life and diversity, with more than 1,000 species of birds (very popular with birdwatchers around the world), 1,200 types of butterflies, over 20,000 varieties of plants and an unknown quantity of reptiles, insects and amphibians.
The park remains fairly inaccessible by road and thus tourism has not developed greatly in the area.