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Manu Birdwatching Paradise 4-Day Program

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Beginning in the historic city of Cusco, this program offers a range of activities as it takes you through colonial towns and jungle villages and into the incredible biological diversity of the Amazon basin. You will venture down the Rio Madre de Dios in search of the vast array of birds found here. The incredible biological diversity of this region is sure to delight you, with its abundant plant, animal and bird life.


Detailed Itinerary:

Day 1. Cusco - Paradise Lodge
We will make an early start from the city of Cusco, traveling overland through an Andean landscape of picturesque valleys, high Andean grasslands and small rural communities. The bird species in this part of the Andes include the Mountain Caracara, Puna Ibis and Andean Flicker. On the approach to the village of Paucartambo, we will pass the pre-Inca burial towers built by the ancient Lupaca culture. In Paucartambo there will be time to appreciate the tranquil beauty of this charming village, visit the local church and photograph the splendid colonial-era Carlos V Bridge. Leaving this community behind, we will continue our journey as far as the high pass at Acjanaco (3,850 meters / 12,630 feet), where we will pass the entrance to Manu National Park and witness amazing views of the scenery below. From the pass the road descends through Andean grasslands rich in a variety of birdlife, and on to the cloud forest, which we will reach in the afternoon. This fascinating ecosystem is home to Peru’s national bird, the Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, as well as Crested and Golden Quetzals, Blue-crowned Motmots, Gray-breasted Mountain Toucans, numerous species of butterflies and many kinds of ferns and colorful orchids. You will spend a comfortable first night in the cloud forest at our Paradise Lodge (1,470 meters / 4,821 feet).

Driving distance: 181 km / 113 miles (5 - 6 hours)
Included: Lunch and Dinner

Day 2. Paradise Lodge – Lodge
After a good night’s rest, we will depart before breakfast to observe how the male cock-of-the-rock forms large groups called “leks” to perform an elaborate courtship ritual designed to attract females. We will then return to the lodge for an excellent breakfast, before setting off for Pillcopata and eventually reaching the port of Atalaya During this drive we will pass plantations of manioc, papaya, pineapple and coca leaves, and we will be on the lookout all the time for local fauna, such as Howler Monkeys and Brown Capuchin Monkeys, as well as birds such as Spix Guans, Plumbeous Kites and Black Vultures. In Atataya we will board a boat for a short ride downriver to our lodge on the banks of the Rio Madre de Dios. The lodge is surrounded by a network of excellent trails where numerous species can be seen.
After dinner there will be an option to do a night hike on the trails surrounding the lodge, in search of the nocturnal species that abound here in the Amazon including Rainbow Boas, Poison Dart Frogs, Night Monkeys, and many other species.

Driving distance: 71.6 km / 44.8 miles (2 hours)
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 3: Amazon Basin - Clay Lick - Oxbow Lake - Paradise Lodge
One of the highlights of a trip to the Peruvian rainforest is an early-morning visit to the parrot clay lick. You will never forget watching hundreds of parrots gather at the mineral-rich riverbank clay deposit, where their noisy feeding display is a kaleidoscope of colors. You will observe Cuvier's toucans, red and green macaws, blue headed parrots and other species as they feed on the mineral-rich clay deposits. After breakfast you will visit a nearby oxbow lake where you might observe Hoatzins, Horned Screamers, Amazon Kingfishers, Caracaras, Solitary Eagles, Great Black Hawks, King Vultures, Cormorants, Roseate Spoonbills, Orinoco Geese, and numerous other species. The remainder of the morning will be spent searching for birds on the trails surrounding the lodge. After lunch you will take a boat back to Atalaya, where our car will be waiting to take you back to Paradise Lodge in comfort.

Driving distance: 71.6 km / 44.8 miles (2 hours)
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 4: Paradise Lodge - Sacred Valley or Cusco
This will be your last day in the forest, and it will begin with another chance to observe the fascinating mating behavior of the cock-of-the-rock. After breakfast we will board our private bus for the return trip to Cusco. Beyond the village of Paucartambo, we will continue on the road that follows the Qenqomayo River as far as Colquepata, before ascending to the high pass at Apacheta (4,100 meters / 13,448 feet). From the pass the road drops into the Sacred Valley of the Incas. There will be plenty of time to make stops along the way to enjoy the scenery and appreciate the traditional way of life of the typical Andean villages dotted along the route. This route also offers an excellent view of the spectacular Inca archaeological ruins of Pisac. You can choose to spend the night at a hotel in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, or return to the city of Cusco.
Driving distance: 192 km / 120 miles (6 hours)
Included: Breakfast and Lunch



Private Tour Pricing:
1 Pax: $1750
2 Pax: $1050/person
3 Pax: $915/person
4 Pax: $825/person
5+ Pax: Please enquire

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