Trip begins with two nights at the Manu Cloud Forest Lodge. Then we travel along the Upper Madre de Dios River and into the Manu National Park, camping for three nights at the Otorongo Camp. Or, departing daily from Cusco visit just the Manu Cloud Forest Lodge. Some of the attractions of the Lodge include a "lek" or dancing ground of Andean Coc-of-the Rock, which are nearly crow-sized, bright red birds in the Cotinga family. Troops of acrobatic Woolly Monkeys are also frequently sighted. An ornithological census by John Arvin, a renowned tropical ornithologist, shows a list that exceeds 700 species of birds in the transect from the grasslands to the lowlands of the Upper Madre de Dios River port of Atalaya. Some of the amenities of the lodge include private bathrooms with hot water, private verandas overlooking the pristine Union creek, and a sauna to relax after the daily activities.
2022 Departure Dates and Costs
September 13 - 20, 2022 ~ Special group departure with company owner Catherine Evans and local guides, from Cusco
Trip cost: $ 1,885 USD
Includes $70 USD entrance fee to Manu National Park and $25 sustainability levy
Single supplement: $ 540 USD
Pre or post tours available
September 13: Cusco / Manu Cloud Forest Lodge (B,L,D)
Early morning departure to the cloud forest of the southeastern boundary of Manu National Park, nested between the grasslands and the lowlands of the Upper Madre de Dios River. We travel southeast through small Andean villages. We travel at leisure making several stops along the way, including the colonial town of Paucartambo, the gateway to the rainforest since pre-Inka times.
Optional mountain biking for those with the energy and a sense of adventure you can descend effortlessly down a single-lane dirt road through this most scenic and beautiful heartland of the cloud forests. Let us know at time of booking if you would like to add this option. We reach the Manu Cloud Forest Lodge to have a relaxing evening by the lodge's veranda. The sound of the Union Creek or a visit to the lodge's sauna will put us into a pleasant sleep.
The small lodge is ideal for the avid wildlife photographer and nature lover. There are four two-story bungalows. Each bungalow is divided in two levels for two to three guests each in single-bed accommodations. Every level provides private toilet facilities, which include hot-water shower, wash stand and flushing toilet. The lodge rooms offer private verandas overlooking the pristine Union creek. There is a restaurant and bar for up to 60 people, reading room and a sauna to relax after the daily activities. ($10 per person for each use).
The lodge has electricity. However, our small generator, due to a number of factors can fail or stop working at any moment, without the possibility of repairs for several days. The electricity output is about 220 volts. A stabilizer is strongly recommended if you will use our electricity output to recharge sensitive electronic equipment. Lights are turned on from 8:00 to 21:00, and briefly prior to early morning excursions.
September 14: Manu Cloud Forest Lodge (B,L,D)
The lush and misty cloud forest is perhaps the most fragile and threatened type of rainforest. This forest starts at an elevation of 11,000 feet and continues down to about 5,000 feet and covers the eastern slopes of the Andes before yielding to the vast lowland forest of the Amazon. This is a kingdom of moss, lichens, ferns, and orchids.
Early morning excursion to a nearby platform and blind strategically located to see a "lek" where the brightly red-colored Coc-of-the Rock display daily for the females. Afterwards we return to our lodge for a hearty breakfast. Later in the morning, we will have the opportunity to explore the Mirador Trail, and the beautiful scenery of the cloud forest. This is another good chance to try our luck to see Woolly Monkeys, Emerald Toucanet, Torrent Duck, Golden-headed Quetzal, Gray-breasted Mountain Toucan, Amazonian Umbrella Bird, Blue-banded Toucanet, Fruit-eating Tanagers, Red-crested Cotinga, Banded-tail Fruit-eater, Tyrant Flycatchers and the Blue-crowned Mot-Mot. In the afternoon you can explore the unpaved road nearby. This is an opportunity to see Dusky-green Oropendola, Crested Oropendola, Mountain Cacique, Yellow-billed Cacique, Grass-green Tanager, Yellow-throated Tanager, or simply enjoy the profusion of plants and flowers insects and butterflies. Remainder of the day at leisure.
September 15: Manu Cloud Forest Lodge/Paititi Lodge (B,L,D)
Early excursion to explore the rich avifauna and biodiversity of the cloud Forest in new areas around the lodge.We then make our way to the river port of Atalaya we will explore the unpaved road nearby which is often productive for wildlife. This is an opportunity to see Dusky-green Oropendola, Crested Oropendola, Mountain Cacique, Yellow-billed Cacique, Grass-green Tanager, Yellow-throated Tanager, or simply enjoy the profusion of plants and flowers insects and butterflies.Upon arrival to the village of Atalaya, we will boat 30 minutes along the Upper Madre de Dios River to the Paititi Lodge. Our rustic lodge is comfortable, surrounded by forest. Note: shared bathing facilities.
September 16: Paititi Lodge to Manu National Park (B,L,D)
After breakfast, we start our 5-hour boat journey on the upper Madre de Dios River to the mouth of the Manu River where the pristine Manu Park wilderness awaits. The boat ride will take us through small villages of Andean colonists and indigenous people whose main economic activities are rudimentary farming and low-scale logging. As soon as we enter the great Manu wilderness, every river bend will bring us a vista of unspoiled beauty. We may see Black Caiman, White Caiman, toucans, parrots, scores of wild macaws, several species of raptors, and maybe even a magnificent Jaguar. The best proof of the presence of Jaguars and the possibility of many of our tour groups to see these great cats, are the many wonderful amateur photographs that our customers have sent back to our company.After about five hours, we arrive at the Otorongo Tented Safari Camp. this is a permanent camp inside the Manu Biosphere National Park. Sleeping on cots with mosquito nets. Note: shared bathing facilities.
September 17: Manu National Park (B,L,D)
Today we will have an opportunity to explore the Manu River, and the most beautiful oxbow lake in Manu, called Lake Salvador. This river trip is another good chance to try our luck and see a Jaguar sunning in the sandbars of the Manu River, as well as side-neck turtles sunning in logs. The five-kilometer long Salvador Lake is the largest and most beautiful lake in the lower Manu River. Four lake piers, several trail circuits and a small catamaran will offer us a chance to look for fauna and to observe the serene beauty of this marvelous place. We might see a group of Giant Otters playing and fishing on the waters below. We boat back to our Otorongo Tented Camp in the late afternoon, to a refreshing shower and a nice meal. Optional night walk.
September 18: Manu National Park (B,L,D)
A full day immersed in the spendour of the Biosphere reserve. We will walk, explore by boat the confluence of the Manu and the Upper Madre de Dios. We will look out for Primates, Capybara - the world's largest rodent, Red-and-Green Macaws perched on the trees or making short and long flights to the rain forest canopy.
September 19: Manu Cloud Forest Lodge/Paititi Lodge (B,LmD)
From Otorongo Camp we will make our way back up the Madre de Dios River to the Paititi Lodge where we will relax and enjoy one more night in the rainforest by the Andean foothills. Participants will certainly appreciate this extra night to break the long journey back.
September 20: Manu Cloud Forest Lodge/Cusco (B,L)
Very early in the morning we will boat to a parrot lick where we may see four different species of small parrots and even one species of macaw. After this great nature spectacle we will boat back to the river port of Atalaya and then by ground to Cusco where we arrive in time for an early dinner.
Ground and boat transport from Cusco to Manu return, naturalist English-speaking guide, all meals at the lodges, accommodations at Cloud Forest Lodge and Manu lodges and tented camp. Manu National Park entrance fee (currently $70 per person)
Alcoholic and/or non-alcoholic beverages, items of a personal nature and tips
Please contact us for more details: 1 (800) 690.7887