North Peru
Birding and Archaeology


Lima Tarapoto
15 Days
Fixed departure:
Nov 2nd 2017
Group size:
4 to 12 people

  Green Tours | Price

Pax based on double occupancy
US$ 4,130.oo

Single suppl.
US$ 790

Detailed Itinerary

North Peru, Birding and Archaeology

15 days tour

Day 1 Lima
Arrival in Lima and transfer to the hotel in the center of the Miraflores distric.
Overnight in Lima.
Day 2 Lima
This morning we will take our way south of Lima for about one and a half hour to Puerto Viejo's marshes.
The main attractions are Great Grebe, Peruvian Thick-knee, Many-colored Rush-Tyrant and Grassland Yellow-Finch. On the beach it is easy to find Surf Cinclodes flying around the rocky areas. On our way back to Lima we will stop at Pucusana. We will take a boat to explore the cliffs near the ocean in Pucusana which are a good place to search for Inca Terns and Humboldt Penguins.
Return to the hotel in Lima. On our way we will make a short stop by Villa Marshes for more waterbirds. Overnight at Wyndham Lima Airport Hotel.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Day 3 Lima - Tarapoto - Moyobamba
Morning flight to the city of Tarapoto. This morning we will drive for about 30 minutes to the mountains of Cordillera Escalera Reserve. The area is a good area for Wattled Guan, Chestnut-tipped Toucanet, Maroon-tailed Parakeet or Golden-headed Manakin.
In the afternoon you will be transferred to the city of Moyobamba, with one stop on the road to look for Oilbirds at Puente Quiscarrumi bridge.
We will spend the rest of the afternoon at the hummingbird feeders where usual visitors are Black-throated Hermit, White-necked Jacobin, Fork-tailed Woodnymph, White-chinned Sapphire, and the fantastic Rufous-crested Coquette, and another 20 species.
Overnight at Waqanki Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D.
Day 4 Moyobamba
The first hours of light today are devoted to hike up the Quebrada Mishquiyacu creek where Bluish-fronted Jacamar, Montane Woodcreeper, Fiery-throated Fruiteater, Varzea Thrush, Peruvian Warbling-Antbird, Plain-winged Antshrike and many others can be found.
The rest of the morning can be spend at the hummingbird feeders. The forest around the feeders can also produce Tataupa Tinamou, Green-backed Trogon; mixed flocks of tanagers with Paradise, Black-bellied, Blue-necked, Guira, Golden, and many other tanagers; Mishana Tyrannulet is also possible.
The afternoon we will be at the hummingbird feeders, visiting the orchids garden or birding around the lodge.
Overnight at Waqanki Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D.
Day 5 Moyobamba - Abra Patricia
Today we will be transferred to our next lodge with several stops along the road. The first stop is at Morro de Calzada, located 15 minutes from Waqanki. This is a mountain that rises lone over the valley and a set of great birds can be found at its base like Rufous Motmot, Blackish Nightjar, Mishana Tyrannulet, White-browed Purpletuft, Pale-breasted Thrush, among others.
Near the town of Aguas Verdes we will have the chance to visit “Arenas Blancas Reserve” where the hummingbird feeders can produce Reddish Hermit, Green Hermit, Blue-fronted and Green-fronted Lancebills, and Violet-fronted Brilliant; the Tinamou feeders are usually visited by Cinereous and Little Tinamous, along with Rufous-breasted Woodquail and Orange billed Sparrow.
Another important stop is before the town of El Afluente, a good spot to look for White-winged Tanager, Red-ruffed Fruitcrow, the fantastic Andean Cock-of-the Rock, and a myriad of other tanagers, woodcreepers, antbirds, woodpeckers, flycatchers and more.
We will arrive to the Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge at by the end of the afternoon, In the gardens of the lodge you will have the time to seat comfortably and enjoy the myriad of hummingbirds coming to the feeders: Green Violetear, Long-tailed Sylph, Speckled Hummingbird, White-bellied Woodstar, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Collared Inca, and many more.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Day 6 Abra Patricia
This morning we will walk the “Grallaria trail” that starts in the upper part of the lodge and goes down the hill for about two and a half hours. The trail goes through humid mountain forest where birds like Ochre-fronted Antpitta, Sharpe’s Wren, Cinnamon Flycatcher, Chestnut-crested Cotinga and Golden-headed Quetzal have been seen regularly.
This afternoon we will have our first attempt to spot the enigmatic Long-whiskered Owlet, a tiny owl endemic to his mountain range. We will walk down a trail for about one hour to the first spot and wait until it gets dark, then our local guide will call the owlet. There are chances to find Ochre-fronted Antpitta, Bicolored Antvireo and White-fronted Nunbird along the trail. We will be back in the lodge at around 08:00 pm.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Day 7 Abra Patricia: Fundo Alto Nieva and Venceremos
Today we will explore the southeastern slope of the Abra Patricia mountains. Before departure we can do some birding around the parking lot that can bring superb birds like Johnson’s Tody-Flycatcher, Deep-blue Flowerpiercer, Yellow-scarfed Tanager, Grass-green Tanager, Rufous Spinetail and many others.
The first stop is at Fundo Alto Nieva, where the hummingbird feeders attract botted Rackettail, Royal Sunangel, Violet-fronted Brilliant, Tawny-bellied Hermit, and a few other hummers. The forest around the house can produce White-capped Tanager, Crested Quetzal, Ornate Flycatcher, Green-and-black Fruiteater, and many more.
In the afternoon we will drive down the road to near the Venceremos town to look for Black-mandibled, White-throated, and Channel-billed Toucans, Red-ruffed Fruitcrow, and we will try to spot an Andean Cock-of-the-Rock crossing above the road.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 8 Abra Patricia - Huembo - Gocta Lodge
Today we will explore the northwestern slope of the Abra Patricia mountains, our first stop is at Huembo Conservation Center, this is a nature reserve created to protect the endemic Marvelous Spatuletail hummingbird, others hummingbirds attending the feeders here are Andean Emerald, Brown Violetear, White-bellied Hummingbird, Purple-throated Woodstar, Purple-throated Sunangel, White-bellied Woodstar.
The forest inside the reserve is good for Emerald Toucanet, Speckled-faced Parrot, White-sided Flowerpiercer, Silvery Tanager, and many others.
After visiting Huembo we will drive up a side road for about 15 minutes and then walk down the road looking for Black-crested Warbler, Citrine Warbler, Sickled-winged Guan, Lacrimose-mountain Tanager, Pale-eyed Thrush, and many more.
Before noon we will drive straight to our next lodge from where we will explore the archaeological site of Kuelap.
Overnight at Gocta Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 9 Kuelap and the Rio Utcubamba valley
Morning excursion to the archaeological site of Kuelap. It's an imposing building on the edge of a deep cliff. Recent archaeological research point out that this could have been an important religious center dedicated to the Chachapoyans gods, probably the god of thunder and rain, and others. The citadel is surrounded by an impressive wall nearly 2,000 feet long, the gates or main entrances are constructed as narrow walled passageways that continue to narrow as they reach upwards and into the fortress, so the income would remain restricted to the complex.
During the trip we will traversing the valley of the Utcubamba river, this is a dry habitat where Fasciated Tiger-Heron, Black-necked Woodpecker and Green Jay are typically easy to see.
Overnight in the town of Leymebamba.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 10 Leymebamba
In the morning we will drive along the Río Atuén valley for about 20 minutes to look for Andean Condors, a couple of these birds is roosting in the cliffs by the valley. By mid-morning we will return to Leymebamba for a visit to the Leymebamba Museum, one of the most interesting museums in Peru where you can see the collection of more than 200 Inca-Chachapoyas mummies in a superb state of preservation.
Furthermore, this museum has the largest collection of Kipus in Peru.
After lunch we will gain some altitude to explore highland habitats looking for specialties like Russet-mantled Softail, Peruvian Thistletail (split from White-chinned Thistletail), Coppery Metaltail, and some Mountain-Tanagers.
Overnight in Leymebamba.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 11 Leymebamba - Celendín - Cajamarca
After an early breakfast we will drive for about two hours straight to the Río Marañon valley. At the river margins we will be looking for Marañon Pigeons. After crossing the river, the xerophytic vegetation is good for Yellow-faced Parrotlet, Buff-bridle Inca-Finch and Black-necked Woodpecker. At higher altitudes, the more humid vegetation can produce Chesnut-backed Thornbird, Buff-bellied Tanager, Marañon Thrush, or Tropical Gnatcatcher.
We will stop in the town of Celendín for lunch.
In the afternoon we will drive to the city of Cajamarca, with a few stops looking for Andean birds like White-tailed Shrike-Tyrant, Rufous-webbed Bush-Tyrant, Paramo Pipit, Rufous Antpitta (cajamarcae subspecies), Black-crested Tit-Tyrant, and many others.
Overnight in Cajamarca.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 12 Cajamarca
After an early breakfast we will drive north of Cajamarca to the Río Chonta valley, looking for the endemic hummingbird Grey-bellied Comet, along with another interesting species like Black Metaltail, Spot-throated Hummingbird, Giant Hummingbird, White-winged Cinclodes, Rusty-crowned Tit-spinetail, Peruvian Meadowlark, and many others.
By mid-morning we will drive back to the city center for a city tour, Cajamarca is a charming Andean city well known for its colonial architecture, mainly because of the colonial churches from the XVI to XVIII centuries like the Cathedral church, San Francisco church, and the Belen Monument Complex. In the year 1,532 the city witnessed the fall of the Inca Empire by the Spanish conquerors. In the city center still stands the “Ransom Room”, where the Spanish kept prisoner the Inca Atahualpa. This “room” also represents the moment when the Spanish and Inca cultures merged with one another and changed the history of Peru.
In the afternoon we will drive south-east to lake San Nicolás, this highland lake is usually home of Cinnamon Teal, Andean Duck, Yellow-billed Pintail, Pied-billed Grebe, Andean Coot, Andean Gull, Wren-like Rushbird, and more. We will be back to the hotel before dusk.
Overnight in Cajamarca.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 13 Cajamarca - Chiclayo
We will drive during the whole morning down the Andes to the city of Chiclayo. The road is nor particularly rich in bird diversity but a couple of stops can bring Red-masked Parakeet, Shiny Cowbirds, or Bair’s Flycatchers.
After a rewarding lunch in Chiclayo we will drive north of the town of Tucume where we will explore the archaeological site of Tucume, this place was the last capitol of the Sican and Chimu kingdoms that thrived in the area just before the Incas arrived to northern Peru. These pyramids were the residence of the Lords of Tucume, who proclaimed themselves gods and lived in gigantic palaces decorated with scenes of sacred and mythic rituals. Recently Huaca Las Balsas has been open to the public, the theme of this temple is the sacred nature of the sea in the religious life of the Sican people, the walls of the temple are decorated with waves and seabirds, anthropomorphic birds, gods sailing on reef-made canoes handling fishing nets.
Overnight at Los Horcones de Tucume lodge, located next to the archaeological site. At night we can scout the surrounding forest in search of some owls.
Overnight at Los Horcones de Tucume Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 14 Chiclayo
After an early breakfast we will visit Bosque de Pomac Nature Reserve, located about 20 minutes from the lodge. This is a Mesquite forest, typical of the Tumbesian region, where we could come to grips with several common Tumbesian endemics along with the threatened Peruvian Plantcutter and Rufous Flycatcher.
Species that occur here include Necklaced Spinetail, Superciliated Wren, Fasciated Wren, Cinereous Finch, Scarlet-backed Woodpecker, Gray-and-White Tyrannulet, Short-tailed Field-Tyrant, Tumbes Tyrannulet (split from Mouse-colored Tyrannulet) or Tumbes Swallow.
At noon we will drive to the town of Lambayeque for lunch and then we are going to visit the Royal Tombs of Sipan Museum. This is one of the most modern and impressive archaeological museums in South America. The museum holds a collection of remarkable Moche artwork pieces that have been found in the tomb of the famous Lord of Sipan.
Overnight at Los Horcones de Tucume Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 15 Chiclayo
Early transfer to the airport for the flight to Lima. In Lima we will leave you at the airport for your international connections.
Meals: B

Travel tips and recommendations

  • Weather: In the pacific coast weather is generally dry and warm. Most days in the Andes will be dry and slightly cold, with a mixture of sunshine and overcast conditions. In the Abra Patricia Area conditions are humid and warm during the day, and slightly cold at night. The Tarapoto area is warm and humid
  • Time Zone: Peru is 5 hours behind GMT. Also, it is in the same time zone as US Eastern Standard Time Zone and does not observe daylight-savings time.
  • Immunizations: Having a Yellow Fever vaccine at least 10 days before your trip is recommended but not mandatory.
  • Electricity: 220 volts in all cities. All lodges do have electricity.

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