According to Homosociety, the Peruvian Amazon is conditionally divided into the northern one with the “capital” in the city of Iquitos and the southern one with the “capital” in the city of Puerto Maldonado – the main city of the Madre de Dios department in the northwest of the country.
Puerto Maldonado is located at the confluence of two rivers – the impenetrable Tambopata and Madre de Dios, a tributary of the Amazon, 55 km from the Bolivian border. The city was founded in 1902 by the scientist Faustino Maldonado, who explored the Madre de Dios River from its source to its confluence with the Tambopata River. The city played an important role in the processing and transportation of rubber and timber, and later became a center for the extraction of gold and oil.
Puerto Maldonado is often referred to as the “World Capital of Flora and Fauna” and is the starting point for jungle explorers and nature lovers. On the territory of the department there are three national reserves of the Peruvian Amazon – Manu, Tambopata-Candamo and Bauaja-Sonene, where the country’s natural treasures are stored. The variety of flora and rare species of wild fauna of the jungle is amazing. Parks are located in hard-to-reach places. They get to them first by boat along the river, then on foot through the forest. Manu Park can also be reached by small plane from Cusco in 30 minutes.
Most of the lodges built in the region are located in the immediate vicinity of the Tambopata reserve, and the lion’s share of the proposed active programs are carried out precisely on its territory.
One of the most pristine and hard-to-reach areas of the rainforest in the world. It is located on the very edge of the Amazon basin, in the basins of the Tambopata and Hit rivers. It occupies an area of 1.1 million hectares. It is famous for being home to the largest variety of birds, reptiles, insects and mammals in the world. More than 575 species of birds, 1200 species of butterflies, 103 species of dragonflies, 135 species of wood ants and 103 species of mammals have been recorded here. The vegetation of the reserve is typical of the tropical zone. The Park can be reached either by boat on the river from Puerto Maldonado in 2 hours, or by car 2.5 hours to the settlement of Infierno, from where another 4 hours on foot to the reserve.
Manu National Park
The largest natural territory of Peru, located in two departments: Cusco and Madre de Dios. It contains the entire basin of the Manu River and covers an area of 1.5 million hectares. The biological variety of the reserve has no comparison with anything. The park is home to a huge number of animals: more than 800 species of birds (wild eagle, habiru, Brazilian stork, black grouse, forest geese, etc.), 200 species of mammals (jaguar, black marmoset, river pink seal, black caiman, lynx and etc.), about 100 species of bats and amphibians, a huge, unclassified number of insects and reptiles. The flora is represented by more than 2,000 varieties and unique plant species, including huge orchids and giant trees that reach 45 meters in height and have a trunk up to 3 meters in diameter. In 1987, UNESCO recognized this area as the Natural Heritage of Humanity. Manu is divided into 3 zones. One of them is an area where only scientists have access, another zone is an area where natural resources are planned to be developed, research is carried out and tourism activities are allowed, and the third zone is an area where local residents live in agriculture.
Bauaja Sonene National Park
Located 90 km from Puerto Maldonado, 5 hours by boat on the rivers Tambopata or Madre de Dios is located. The park is located between the departments of Madre de Dios and Puno, and has an area of 1.1 million hectares. Among the most interesting animals of the zone are the swamp deer, anteater, river wolf and giant nutria.
Located 5 km from the city of Puerto Maldonado. The lake can be reached by boat on the river Madre de Dios, then from the river on foot deep into the jungle. This small (3 km long and 1 km wide) picturesque lake has a rich underwater world. The depth is from 0.5 to 3 meters. The water has an average temperature of 26°C. Around Sandoval, in the wetlands, you can find exotic plants such as orchids, platanios, mahogany. 100 meter palm trees grow here right out of the water. On the lake you can see river otters, caimans, frogs and lizards. Several species of monkeys and a great variety of rare birds are found in the coastal forest.
Somewhat larger and deeper than Lake Sandoval: 15 km long, 800 meters wide, 0.5 to 15 meters deep. Located 60 km from the city of Puerto Maldonado. You can get to the lake by boat on the Madre de Dios River in 4 hours. The lake is surrounded by various exotic trees such as pumakiro, kiniya, lupuna.
Hill of Red Parrots Ara Colorado
Located 150 km from the city of Puerto Maldonado, in the Tambopata National Reserve, on the left bank of the Tambopata River. Considered the largest hill in the Peruvian Amazon. Every morning, five different types of Macaws flock here. Birds circle over the hill for 25-30 minutes, and then fly away until the next day.
Planes fly to Puerto Maldonado from Lima (journey time 1.5 hours) and Cusco (journey time 25 minutes).
The climate is warm and humid throughout the year. Average temperature 27°C (max. 34°C, min. 21°C). The rainy season is from December to March.
The best time to visit Puerto Maldonado is from March to December (relatively dry season).
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