South Peru
Machu Picchu and Manu lowlands


Lima - Puerto maldonado - Cusco
18 Days
may 8th 2017
Group size:
4 to 10 people

  Green Tours | Price

Pax based on double occupancy
US$ 5,720.oo

Single suppl.
US$ 750

Detailed Itinerary

South Peru Machu Picchu and Manu lowlands

18 days tour

Day 1 Lima
Arrival in Lima and transfer to the hotel in the center of the Miraflores district.
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 - Cusco - Ollantaytambo
Today we'll be taking an early flight to Cusco. After arrival in Cusco we'll move straight to lake Huacarpay, this is a reliable place to see typical Andean waterfowl like White-tufted and Silvery Grebes, Andean Duck, Cinnamon and Puna Teal, and others. The vegetation around the lake is good for Bearded Mountaineer, Yellow-winged Blackbird, or Andean Negrito.
After lunch in the city center we'll drive to our hotel in the town of Ollantaytambo, at the heart of the Sacred valley of the Incas. The gardens of the hotel can bring nice surprises like Great Hummingbird, Great Sapphirewing, or Shining Sunbeam.
Overnight in Ollantaytambo.
Meals: B, L, D.
Day 4 Machu Picchu
This morning we will have an early departure for the town of Ollantaytambo to take the train to Aguas Calientes, the entrance gate to Machupicchu. The habitat inside the archaeological site is good for Inca Wren, Parodi's Hemispingus, Cuzco Brush-Finch, and Tricolored Brush-Finch.
In the afternoon we will spend about two hours birding the forest near Aguas Calientes looking for birds like Green-and-white Hummingbird, Andean Motmot, Ocellated Piculet, Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, Masked Fruiteater, and many more.
Then we will take our train back to Ollantaytambo Overnight in Ollantaytambo.
Meals: B, L, D.
Day 5 Abra Málaga - Cusco
Full day birding excursion to Abra Málaga pass. This is probably the best place to find Polylepys elfin forests specialists. The Málaga pass is located at an altitude of 4,230 meters. The first stops will be after the pass itself, where the humid mountains forests of the eastern slope are good for Puna Thistletail, Tit-like Dacnis, Parodi’s Hemismpingus, Rufous Antpitta, or White-browed Conebill.
At the pass itself, if people feels able to do the hike, we will be looking for White-browed Tit-Spinetail, Ash-breasted Tit-Tyrant, Stripe-headed Antpitta, Giant Conebill, and Royal Cinclodes.
By mid-afternoon we will drive to the city of Cusco, during our descent from Abra Málaga we will make a few stops at some patches of semi-humid mountain scrub where will be looking for White-tufted Sunbeam, Creamy-crested Spinetail, and Chestnut-breasted Mountain-Finch.
Overnight in Cusco.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Day 6 Cusco - Manu Road
We make an early start today as we travel along the Manu road. The road from Cuzco to Manu is one of the most spectacular birding areas of Peru, the birding adventure begins at the Acjanaco pass where the elfin forest and the bushes hold a set of interesting birds like Puna Thisteltail, Scribble-tailed Canastero, Diademed Tapaculo, Masked Flowerpiercer, Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager, White-browed Conebil, Blue-backed Conebil, Golden-Collared Tanager, Three-striped Hemispingus, Plush-capped Finch, and much more
Overnight at Wayqecha Lodge.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Day 7 Wayqecha Lodge
The elfin forests of Wayqecha are good for Andean Guan, Shining Sunbeam, Amethyst-throated Sunagel, Azahara's Spinetal, Sierran Elaenia, Gray-breasted Mountain-Toucan, White-collared Jay, Great Thrush, Parodi's Hemispingus, Blue-capped Tanager, Grass-green Tanager, Hoodedmountain Tanager, Scarlet-bellied Tanager, Golden-collared Mountain Tanager, Blue-backed Conebil, Masked Flowerpiercer, Black-faced Brush-Finch, and many others.
At lower altitudes (altitude: between 2600 and 2000 meters) the cloud forests offer a different set of birds: Golden-plumed Parakeet, Lyre-tailed Nightjar, Long-tailed Sylph, Masked Trogon, Black-streaked Puffbird, Marcapata Spinetail, Rufous-backed Treehunter, Barred Fruiteater, Band-tailed Fruiteater, Handsome Flycatcher, Inca Flycatcher, Mountain Cacique, and much more.
Overnight at Wayqecha Lodge.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Days 8 & 9 Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge
Two days exploring the cloud forests around Cock-of-the-Rock lodge, located at an altitude of 1400 meters. The main attraction here is the Cock-of-the Rock lek, the biggest lek known in Peru. In the gardens of the lodge it's not difficult to find Versicolored Barbet and Rufescent Screech-Owl, the forest around the lodge has a high diversity of birds: Ash-browed Spinetail, Black-billed Treehunter, Yellow-breasted Antwren, Ornate Antwren, Yungas Manakin, Cerulean-capped Manakin, Hazel-fronted Pygmy-Tyrant, Ornate Flycatcher, Fulvous breasted Flatbill, and lots of mixed species flocks. The complete list for this area has about 500 species.
Overnight at Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 10 Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge - Villa Carmen lodge
Today we leave early to reach lower altitudes, the mountain and lowland forests of the lower section of the road have a different set of birds than the previous sections. The list includes Orange-breasted Falcon, Blue-headed Macaw, Peruvian Piedtail, Buff-tailed Sicklebill, Lanceolated Monklet, Fine-barred Piculet, Russet Antshrike, Scarlet-breasted Fruiteater, Fiery-capped Manakin, Red-billed Tyrannulet, Golden-collared Honeycreeper, among others.
Villa Carmen Lodge is strategically located at an altitude of 520 meters and holds different types of habitats that you will explore the next days.
Overnight at Villa Carmen Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Days 11, 12 Villa Carmen lodge
There are nearly 50 Km of trails around the lodge going through mature and secondary forest, bamboo thickets and around lakes.
The trails near the lodge with bamboo patches and second grow vegetation are good for Blue-headed, Blue-and-yellow, Scarlet, and Red-and-green Macaws flying over. Also Hummingbirds like Rufous-crested Coquette, Reddish Hermit, White-bearded Hermit, Sapphire- spangled Emerald, Golden-tailed Sapphire can be found around the garden.
Bamboo specialists are also possible like Bamboo Antshrike, Manu Antbird, Striated Antbid, Red-billed Scythebill, Dusky-cheeked Foliage Gleaner, Gray-cheeked Nunlet White-cheeked Tody-Tyrant, Flammulated Bamboo-Tyrant, or Large-headed Flatbill. Among the most important specialist in this bamboo vegetation are Black-throated Antbird, Blackish Antbird, Chesnut-capped Puffbird, Fine-barred Piculet, and Cabanis's Spinetail.
The fishpond is good for Purple Gallinule, Rufescent Tiger-Heron, Cocoi Heron, Sunbittern, Sungrebe, Ringed Kingfisher, Amazon Kingfisher among others species.
Other interesting birds in the area are Black Hawk-Eagle, Zone-tailed Hawks, Black-tailed Trogon, Blue-crowned Trogon, Bluish-fronted Jacamar, Little Woodpecker, Rusty-belted Tapaculo, Little Ground-Tyrant, Masked Crimson-Tanager, Black-faced Dacnis, Yellow-bellied Dacnis, Golden-bellied Euphonia. The complete list for the area has more than 600 species.
Overnight at Villa Carmen Lodge.
Meals: B, L, D
Day 13 Villa Carmen - Manu Wildlife Center
We leave the Villa Carmen Lodge and head by boat to our next destination, the equally delightful Manu Wildlife Centre where we spend the next three nights.
Overnight at Wayqecha Lodge.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D
Days 14, 15, 16 Manu Wildlife Center
The Manu lowlands are considered a paradise for birders. The area around an oxbow lake holds Straight-billed Woodcreeper, River Tyrannulet, Spotted Tody-Flycatcher, Pale-eyed Blackbird, Hoatzin, Black-collared Hawk, Little Cuckoo, Anhinga, Rufescent Tiger-Heron, Green Ibis, Limpkin, Sungrebe and Wattled Jacana.Across the river from the lodge there is a stand of Guadua bamboo, a very special habitat occupied by Rufous-headed Woodpecker, Rufous-capped Nunlet, Peruvian Recurvebill, Bamboo Antshrike, and Manu, Striated, and Goeldi's Antbirds. The forest along the river holds several woodpeckers, woodcreepers, foliage-gleaners, tanagers and wrens, possibly Pavonine Quetzal, Rufous-fronted Antthrush, among other specialties. The canopy tower allows to have magnificent views of raptors, parrots, toucans and aracaris, flycatchers, tanagers, cotingas. We end our visit to the centre with an impressive list of birds as well as lots of other wildlife.
Overnight at Manu Wildlife Centre.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D
Day 17 Manu Wildlife Center - Puerto Maldonado
Today we travel down the Madre de Dios River to the town of Laberinto where we will take a private car to the city of Puerto Maldonado.
Overnight in Puerto Maldonado.
Meals: B, Boxed-L, D.
Days 18 Puerto Maldonado - Lima
Morning at leisure. At proper time you will be transferred to the Puerto Maldonado airport for the flight to Lima. In Lima we will leave you at the airport for your international connections.

Travel tips and recommendations

  • Weather: Most days in the Manu will be warm and humid, with a mixture of sunshine and overcast conditions. Some rain should be expected, from brief showers to sometimes extended periods of heavy rain. In the Cuzco region conditions range from warm to decidedly cold at the highest altitudes. It may rain at times or even snow at the highest altitudes.
  • 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 Lima and Cuzco. The lodges lack electricity but a generator is turned on once a day to recharge batteries for guests or lodge facilities. At night it is very dark, so we recommend good flashlights. Light is provided by numerous kerosene lamps and candles.

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