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BIRDING IN SOUTHERN PERU TOUR, CUZCO AND MANU

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This 19-day Birding in Southern Peru tour traverses the richest biodiverse region of the country. Peru is known for its incredible biodiversity, however, Peru is also rich in cultural heritage. Undoubtedly, the flagship of this heritage is Machu Picchu. 

The Birding in Southern Peru tour begins birding at Machu Picchu and Abra Malaga. Abra Malaga is well-kwon for its special birds like Royal Cinclodes or White-browed Tit-spinetail. After that, we go into the eastern slope of the Andes, following the “Manu road”. First, we stop at the pleasant Wayqecha lodge, hence we will be birding at high elevation.

After that, we spend some time at Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge, where the hummingbird and tanager feeders are generally very active. Also, we visit a large Cock-of-the-Rock lek nearby the lodge.

We finish the birding along the Manu road by visiting the Villa Carmen Biological Station. Since Villa Carmen is located at a lower altitude than the other lodges, this is the most bird diverse area of the trip.

After exploring the Manu Road, the Birding in Southern Peru tour continues into the Manu lowlands. The first stop is at Tambo Blanquillo lodge, where the main attraction is the Macaw clay lick. Also, they have a canopy tower. Giant River Otters can be seen at the Blanco oxbow lake.

To finish the trip, we visit Los Amigos Biological Station for a few nights. They have a superb trail system allowing to visit several kind of habitats like bamboo patches, varzea forests, and terra firme.

The Birding in Southern Peru tour ends in the city of Puerto Maldonado, where we will take a flight back to Lima.

Additionally, we include a day for birding around Lima, to look for Humboldt Penguins and Inca Terns!

Birding and conservation: Cheqa Peru SRL, owner of Green Tours, will donate 50 US$ of its benefits per participant to “Asociación Green Tours” to support local conservation initiatives. If additionally, you wish to give a more generous donation, please send an email to wilson.diaz@greentours.com.pe

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DAY 1
DAY 2
DAY 3
DAY 4
DAY 5
DAY 6
DAY 7
DAY 8, 9
DAY 10
DAY 11, 12
DAY 13
DAY 14, 15
DAY 16
DAY 17
DAY 18
DAY 19
Birding in southern Peru tour, Cuzco and Manu
19 Days Tour Program
DAY 1: Lima

Arrival in Lima.
Overnight at Wyndham Lima Airport Hotel.

Meals: None.

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DAY 2: Lima

This morning we will take our way south of Lima for about one hour to the Pucusana fishing port where we will take a boat to search for Humboldt Penguin, Inca Tern, Peruvian Booby, Guanay and Red-legged Cormorants, and Surf Cinclodes. After lunch we will drive back to Lima, with a stop at the Villa Marshes, A nature reserve where we could find Many-colored Rush-tyrant, Great Grebe, Wren-like Rushbird, Peruvian Thick-knee, and lots of shorebirds.
Overnight at Wyndham Lima Airport Hotel.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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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 waterbirds like Puna Teal, Silvery Grebe, Andean Duck, Cinnamon, 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 Giant Hummingbird, Great Sapphirewing, or Shining Sunbeam.
Overnight in Ollantaytambo.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 4: Machu Picchu

This morning we will have an early train departure for the town of Aguas Calientes, the entrance gate to Machupicchu. The habitat inside the archaeological site is good for Inca Wren. We plan to spend about two hours exploring the archaeological site.
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, and many more.
Then we will take our train back to Ollantaytambo
Overnight in Ollantaytambo.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 5: Abra Málaga - Cuzco

Full day birding excursion to Abra Málaga. The first stop will be after the mountain pass, where the humid mountains forests are good for Puna Thistletail, Tit-like Dacnis, Parodi’s Hemispingus, Rufous Antpitta, or White-browed Conebill.
At the mountain pass itself, at 4,200 meters of elevation, we will be looking for Ash-breasted Tit-tyrant, White-browed Tit-spinetail, Giant Conebill, and probably we could spot a Royal Cinclodes.
By mid-afternoon we will drive to the city of Cuzco, 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 Chestnut-breasted Mountain-finch, Creamy-crested Spinetail, and White-tufted Sunbeam.
Overnight in Cuzco.

Meals: Breakfast, picnic-lunch, dinner.

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DAY 6: Cusco - Manu Road

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 hold a set of interesting birds like Diademed Tapaculo, Puna Thisteltail, Scarlet-bellied Mountain-tanager, Blue-backed Conebill, White-browed Conebill, and much more
Overnight at Wayqecha Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, picnic-lunch, dinner.

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DAY 7: Wayqecha Lodge

The elfin forests of Wayqecha are good for Andean Guan, Sierran Elaenia, Amethyst-throated Sunagel, Grey-breasted Mountain-toucan, Parodi's Hemispingus, White-collared Jay, Grass-green Tanager, Hooded Mountain-tanager, Black-faced Brush-finch, Golden-collared Tanager, and many others.
At lower elevation, the cloud forests offer a different set of birds: Lyre-tailed Nightjar, Golden-plumed Parakeet, Long-tailed Sylph, Masked Trogon, Inca Flycatcher, Rufous-backed Treehunter, Barred Fruiteater, and much more.
Overnight at Wayqecha Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 8, 9: Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge

Two days exploring the cloud forests around Cock-of-the-Rock lodge, located at an altitude of 1,400 meters. The main attraction here is the Cock-of-the Rock lek. 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: Black-billed Treehunter, Yellow-breasted Antwren, Ornate Antwren, Yungas Manakin, Cerulean-capped Manakin, 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: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 10: Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge - Villa Carmen lodge

Today we leave early to reach lower elevations, 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 Parrot, Lanceolated Monklet, Fine-barred Piculet, Fiery-capped Manakin, 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: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 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.
Possible Bamboo specialists are Manu Antbird, Striated Antbid, Bamboo Antshrike, Red-billed Scythebill, White-cheeked Tody-tyrant, Black-throated Antbird, Cabanis's Spinetail.
Around the fishpond we could find Rufescent Tiger-heron, Amazon Kingfisher, Purple Gallinule, Sunbittern, Sungrebe, among other species.
Other interesting birds in the area are Black-tailed Trogon, Black Hawk-eagle, Blue-crowned Trogon, Zone-tailed Hawk, Black-faced Dacnis, Rusty-belted Tapaculo, Yellow-bellied Dacnis, Little Ground-tyrant, Golden-bellied Euphonia. The complete list for the area has more than 600 species.
Overnight at Villa Carmen Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 13: Villa Carmen - Tambo Blanquillo lodge

Today we leave Villa Carmen and take a boat to enter the Manu lowlands.
We spend the night at the beautiful Tambo Blanquillo Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, picnic-lunch, dinner.

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DAY 14, 15: Tambo Blanquillo lodge

The Manu lowlands are considered a paradise for birders. Around oxbow lakes we could find Pale-eyed Blackbird, Spotted Tody-flycatcher, Hoatzin, Little Cuckoo. The Guadua bamboo patches are a very special habitat occupied by Rufous-capped Nunlet, Peruvian Recurvebill, Goeldi's Antbird.
The forest along the river holds a huge diversity of woodpeckers, woodcreepers, foliage-gleaners, tanagers, wrens, and others. Possible special birds here are Pavonine Quetzal and Rufous-fronted Antthrush. The canopy tower allows to have magnificent views of raptors, parrots, toucans, aracaris, flycatchers, tanagers, cotingas.
Definetively, one of the most spectacular experiences of Manu is the Parrot clay lick, where we might see Blue-and-Yellow Macaw, Scarlet Macaw, Red-and-Green Macaw, Orange-cheeked Parrot, or Mealy Parrot.
Overnight at Tambo Blanquillo lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 16: Tambo Blanquillo - Los Amigos lodge

After breakfast we take a boat to Los Amigos lodge.
Lunch at the Lodge.
After lunch we will focus in terra firme habitats, where Grey-headed Kite, Barred-forest Falcon, Double-toothed Kite, are possible. Common species around here are White-collared Puffbird, Rufous-fronted Antthrush Fiery-capped Manakin, Pavonine Quetzal, etc. At night time, owls like Crested Owl and Tropical Screech-owl are not difficult to find.
Overnight at Los Amigos Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 17: Los Amigos lodge

After breakfast we will go to the floodplain forest, birding along this trail we could have Spot-winged Antshrike, Chestnut-winged Hookbill, White-eyed Antwren, White-throated Antbird, Bar-bellied Woodcreeper. near a small lake we could have good sightings of Black Hawk-eagle and Ornate Hawk-eagle glyding around.
In the afternoon, we will explore terra firme and floodplain forests, looking for Pink-throated Becard, White-winged Shrike-tanager, Opal-rumped Tanager, White-flanked Antwren and many more.
Overnight at Los Amigos Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 18: Los Amigos Lodge - Puerto Maldonado

This morning we have chances to look for bamboo specialists like Long-crested Pygmy-tyrant, Bamboo Antshrike, Rufous-headed Woodpecker, Yellow-breasted Antwarbler, Bamboo Pygmy-tyrant, Yellow-billed Nunbird, Rufous-capped Nunlet, White-lined Antbird, Dot-winged Antwren, Ornate Antwren.
Lunch at the lodge.
In the afternoon we will take the boat to the city of Puerto Maldonado.
Overnight at Cabaña Quinta Hotel.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 19: Puerto Maldonado - Lima

Morning at leisure. A shuttle bus will take us to the airpot for the flight to Lima.
Meals: Breakfast.

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PRICES INCLUDE:
  • Lodging as described above (some lodges, hotels, might changed depending on room's availabilty)
  • Ground transportation and driver throughout the tour
  • Private boat for the Amazonian part of the tour
  • Train tickets to Machu Picchu
  • English speaking bird guide
  • All entrance fees for nature reserves
  • Meals as mentioned in the program
  • Applicable taxes, fees, and licenses
PRICES DOES NOT INCLUDE:
  • International or domestic flights, reconfirmation of flights, visa fees, airport taxes, excess luggage charges, additional nights during the trip due reasons beyond our control, bottled water, alcoholic beverages, snacks, laundry, phone calls or messages, any kind insurance, and items of personal nature.
If you want us to include the internal flights within Peru just let us know.
All itineraries are given as a guide only. Actual holiday content may vary according to the judgement of your guide, and elements beyond our control (eg weather).
Some hotels and lodges might change depending on their room’s availability.

See our Bookings Terms and Conditions
PRICES
Per pax based
on double occupancy:
$ 5,828.oo
Single Suppl.:
$ 935.oo
ABOUT THE TRIP
Duration: 19 Days
Fixed Departure:
May 3rd, 2022
--
Bookings close 90 days prior to departure
Group Size: 4 to 8 pax

Private departures under request, ask for a quotation

Do you have any question?
TRAVEL TIPS & 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 do not have electricity, but a generator is turned on once a day in the evening. At night it is very dark, so we advise to bring flashlights.
Physical effort: People should be in good physical condition to do hikes in the mountains at elevations up to 4,200 meters (about 13,800 feet). Also, people should be able to step in and out of boats and canoes with any problem, and be able to walk on moderate rough, steep terrain for about 4 hours.