Manu Wildlife Center Photography Safari 5d/4n

Itinerary

This lodge is located east of the Manu River on the north bank of the Madre de Dios River. It is reached by a 45‐ minute flight from Cusco to Puerto Maldonado followed by a car and boat journey to reach MWC and offers the Amazon’s finest short, in‐depth wildlife safari.  The lodge is famous for its abundant and varied wildlife, with its own Tapir clay lick, a nearby macaw clay lick project, two nearby oxbow lakes and two tall canopy viewing towers among its impressive highlights.

Day 1
Puerto Maldonado‐Colorado  ‐Manu Wildlife Center.

Our service begins with your reception early morning followed by a transfer service by van to Santa Rosa Village, we will get there in about 2h30min journey, you will cross the Inambari River for a 15 minutes boat trip to Puerto Carlos, here you will start your overland journey to Boca Colorado for 45 minutes by car, followed by 4h30min by motorized boat journey ride upstream on the Madre de Dios river. We arrive at Manu Wildlife Center for lunch.

Later, we make our first acquaintance with the rainforest, exploring some of the 30 miles of forest trails that surround the lodge. We have an excellent chance of encountering some of the 12 species of monkeys, including the Spider Monkey and Emperor Tamarin, which inhabit the surrounding forest.

After dinner, there will be an enchanting night walk along the trails, in search of the nocturnal birds and animals of the rainforest (L, D)

Day 2
Manu Wildlife Center: the Macaw Clay lick project, Canopy Tower & Tapir Clay Lick  

Another early start (inevitable on wildlife expeditions), after a delicious breakfast we walk through the forest for some minutes, where we find the Macaw Lick project. The hide provided with individual chairs and a convenient place for cameras and binoculars to a distance of 15 meters. In groups of two and three, the Scarlet Macaws come flapping in, landing in the treetops as they eye the main stage below.

Afterward, we continue walking and exploring the network of trails surrounding the lodge then we return to the lodge for lunch.

Later, we continue to explore and discover the rainforest, its lore, and plant life, on the network of trails surrounding the lodge, arriving in the late afternoon at our 34m/112ft. Canopy Tower. On its platform, we witness the frantic rush‐ hour activity of twilight in the rainforest canopy, before night closes in.

Then we set off along the “collpa trail”, which will take us to the lodge’s famous Tapir Clay lick. Here at the most active tapir lick known in the entire Amazon, our research has identified from 8‐12 individual 600‐pound Tapirs who come to this lick to eat clay from under the tree roots around the edge. This unlikely snack absorbs and neutralizes toxins in the vegetarian diet of the Tapir, the largest land animal of Latin America. The lick features a roomy, elevated observation platform 5m/17ft above the forest floor.  The platform is equipped with freshly made up mattresses with pillows. Each mattress is covered by a roomy mosquito net. The 10‐m‐long, elevated walkway to the platform is covered with sound‐absorbing padding to prevent our footsteps from making noise. This Tapir Experience is unique and exciting because of these normally very shy creatures are visible up close, and flash photography is not just permitted, but encouraged. The hard part for modern city dwellers is to remain still and silent anywhere from 30 minutes to two or more hours.  Many prefer to nap until the first Tapir arrives, at which point your guide gently awakens you to watch the Tapir 10‐20m/33‐66ft) away below the platform. Most people feel that the wait is well worth it in order to have such a high probability of observing the rare and elusive Tapir in its rainforest home. (B/L/D)

Day 3
Manu Wildlife Center: Hike to an Oxbow Lake and the Wildlife Trails.

We set off early for an old oxbow lake full of water lilies (Nuphar lutea) and sunken logs. As we circle the lake on our catamaran we might encounter the resident Giant Otter family on a fishing expedition, or troops of monkeys crashing noisily through the trees. Wattled Jacanas step lightly on the lily pads, dainty Sun Grebes paddle across the water, supple‐necked Anhinga air‐dry their wide, black wings, and perhaps an Osprey scans for fish from a high branch. Among the bushes near the waterline, Hoatzins, which look like rust‐colored, punk chickens, announce their presence with distinctive, bizarre wheezing and grunts.  Woodpeckers, tanagers, macaws, toucans, and parakeets all finally come swooping into trees surrounding the lake.  Many of them roost around the lake for the night.

After lunch at the lodge, our guide is available to lead us on freewheeling expeditions in search of further wildlife encounters, or we may take one of the lodge’s many trails on private and personal excursions to commune with the spirits of the rainforest.

This evening, from the late afternoon until after Dinner, we offer an opportunity to search for caiman and other nocturnal life along the riverbank by boat (If the level of river allows it) (B/L/D)

Day 4
Manu Wildlife Center: Observation tower and trail system. After breakfast we will explore on the network of trails, having more emphasis in visiting trees that are with flowers and fruits, this thanks to the information of our resident and naturalist guides. Here we expect to find more species of monkeys, as well as also numerous species of birds. Before or after the dinner, the passengers who have energy and want more experience, they will have the second opportunity to visit the Observation Tower as well as The mammals or tapir clay lick  (Collpa de mamiferos).   (B/L/D)
Day 5
Manu Wildlife Center to Puerto Maldonado

Departure day. We leave our lodge very early on the 2h30min return boat trip downstream to the Colorado Village. Depending upon the time we must be in Puerto Maldonado, the breakfast will be served at the lodge or on the boat while you enjoying early morning wildlife activity as we go, of course this is a perfect time to take advantage of valuable early morning wildlife activity along the river, in additions this journey allows us to see several lowland native settlements and gold miners digging and panning gold along the banks of the Madre de Dios River. We will stop in the far‐west type gold‐mining town of Colorado to start our overland journey to Puerto Carlos for 45 minutes, then you will cross the Inambari River for 15 minutes boat trip to Santa Rosa, finally a van or bus will drive us in approximately two‐hours to the airport in Puerto Maldonado City, with this assistance your jungle adventure ends… (B)

Arrival/Departures:

This trip starts and finishes in Puerto Maldonado, starting very early in the morning at 6:00 am! Thus it is necessary to spend the previous night in Puerto Maldonado. The return journey takes a minimum of 3hours 30min. Please allow for plenty of buffer time when you book your return flight.

From Lima or Cusco take a commercial airplane to Puerto Maldonado followed by a short overland journey and then navigate up the Madre de Dios River by motorized canoe to reach our Manu Wildlife Center, the single best wildlife lodge in the Amazon and offers the Amazon’s finest short, in-depth wildlife safari.

  • Reception, assistance and transfer from the Airport in Puerto Maldonado on the first day and back to the airport on the last day.
  • Overland & River transportation.
  • Accommodation in the following lodge
    4 nights  at Manu Wildlife Center
  • Meals during the trip (beginning with lunch on day 1 and ending with breakfast on day 4
  • Air tickets.
  • Personal expenses such as beverages, telephone call, tips, etc.
  • Extras not mentioned in the itinerary

Please note that itineraries may vary slightly to maximize wildlife viewing, depending on the reports of our local researchers and experienced naturalist guides.

The jungle is not a place to show off expensive jewelry or delicate clothes.

Weather:

Rainfall in the Manu Lowlands is around 2500-3500 millimeters/98-138 inches per year, with most rainfall occurring in the rainy season months from November to April. The average temperature in the Manu lowlands is 28°C (82°F), with daily highs of 34°C (93°F) and nightly lows of 22°C (72°F). During the dry season, cold fronts from the South Atlantic (friajes) occur once every month or so, with daily temperatures dropping to 15°C (59°F) and nightly temperatures to 13°F (55°F).

Best season to travel: Late March through December.

Healthcare:

Yellow fever vaccinations are no longer mandatory in Tambopata, however, they are highly recommended. Please check with the CDC for current health information. Dengue Fever and Leishmaniasis are present in the region. Prevention is the best medicine: wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, a hat and cover exposed areas with effective bug repellent (deet content at least 20%).

 

  • Good binoculars
  • Camera gear 
  • Two or three pairs of long pants (including at least one pair that you don’t mind getting dirty. Fast drying type is recommended.)
  • Four pairs of absorbent  socks
  • Rain suit or long poncho (100% waterproof – test before you leave home)
  • Two or three long-sleeved cotton shirts
  • Two or three T-shirts
  • A bottle or canteen to carry water on outings
  • Sunscreen lotion (high factor)
  • A hat that will not come off in windy boat-rides
  • One pair of shorts
  • Sunglasses
  • A pair of sneakers or hiking boots (with good gripping soles) and sandals
  • Insect repellent (Skin-so-soft for the river, and 20% or more deet for forest)
  • A photocopy of your passport
  • A large, bright flashlight
  • Personal toiletries (biodegradable) and medications
  • Rubber Boots for the rainy season from November to April.
  • Cash for souvenirs at the lodge stand, alcoholic beverages, etc
Macaw Conservation Proyect – Manu Wildlife Center
Serious deforestation has made reproduction of macaws a struggle. The project consists of placing artificial nests in areas affected by deforestation and illegal logging, therefore, compensating the lack of natural spaces for nesting. For several years this work has been performed with very good results. Currently, field monitoring allows us to collect evidence for the repeated use of these nests by different pairs of macaws.