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Kolibri Expeditions - Peru Birding Tours and Birdwatching Holidays Worldwide

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Lima days: Santa Eulalia valley and Marcopomacocha


Birdwatching at Santa Eulalia canyon and Marcapomacocha road


This two day trip can be run almost anytime on request. (Check with us). Most visitors to Peru will definitely remember this trip as a highlight during their stay in Peru. Not only for being at the highest altitude, at 4900m (16000 ft)  but because the contrasting difference to bustling 8 million habitants metropolis,Lima just three-four hours away. It is another world.

While it is possible to do it in two days, there are always some targets missed. We recommend allocating three days for this trip. 

Given below are a couple of very easy Lima one day trips.  After a long and dusty trip in interior Peru it may be a good idea to have a few days to spare in Lima. If you don´t want to do biridng all day, you can check out our half day trips, which can be combined with some of the great archeological museums in Lima, which should not be missed. During the Lima days, hotel and dinner in Lima are not included. We have several hotel possibilities which we can book for you in a wide range of prices and comfort.

Half day birdwatching trips.

Perfect tours if you are short of time, want to do other activities in Lima as well, or perhaps have a plane to catch and some time to kill. 


Full day birding excursions.

Two day birding tours: 

  • Condor watching trips to Santa Eulalia Canyon - only 3 hours from Lima
    Daily condor watching trips. This is a short, inexpensive and time efficient alternative for those that had considered to go to Colca Canyon to see condors.
  • Junin Grebe twitch
    Main target: Junin Grebe and birds often missed in the Santa Eulalia Canyon.


If the departure dates don't fit you, please suggest another date.

Santa Eulalia valley and Marcopomacocha. (2 or 3 days)

Rufous-breasted Warbling-finch, Poospiza rubecula Santa Eulalia Canyon, Lima, Perú. Photo:Juan Chalco

Day 1.

We will make a 4 AM start straight for Santa Eulalia Valley in order to be in position when the rare Rufous-breasted Warbling-Finch is more active. There are many west slope specialties here, such as Black-necked Flicker, Oasis Hummingbird, Peruvian Sheartail, Bronze-tailed Comet, Great Inca-Finch, Peruvian Pygmy-Owl, Canyon Canastero, Rusty-bellied Brush-Finch, Bright-rumped Yellow-Finch, Thick-billed Miner, Pied-crested Tit-Tyrant, Rusty-crowned Tit-Spinetail, Streaked Tit-Spinetail and many others. We stay in the quite comfortable Huachupampa hotel with private bath and hot water at around 2900m.

Day 2.

In the early morning we will be at the look out to spot Andean Condors flying out from their roosting cliffs. At the Polylepis forest we have been very successful with White-cheeked Cotinga in the past. Also present are Striated Earthcreeper, Stripe-headed Antpitta, Giant Conebill, Tit-like Dacnis, Rufous-webbed Bush-Tyrant , Torrent Duck, White-capped Dipper and maybe we spot White-tailed Shrike-Tyrant found here twice. We will continue over the 4900m pass to the Milloc bog for things like Puna Tinamou (rare), Giant Coot, Gray-breasted and Rufous-bellied Seed-snipes, Puna Snipe, Southern Pochard (twice), Andean Ibis and of course all the targets: Diademed Sandpiper-Plover, White-bellied Cinclodes, Olivaceous Thornbill, Black-breasted Hillstar, Dark-winged Miner, Junin Canastero, Ground-Tyrants and many more. In the afternoon we shall drive back to Lima or will be connecting to Junin Lake, Central Peru or Carpish.

Day 3.

White-cheeked Cotinga, Zaratornis stresemanni. Santa Eulalia Canyon, Lima, Perú Photo: ©Alejandro Tello

3 day version: If you allocate three days to this itinerary it is OK to leave Lima at 5 AM. You will try for the Rufous-breasted Warbling-Finch the following day after staying overnight at Huachupampa. We recommend the three day version, because we almost invariable miss an endemic or two due to the time constraint of the two day program. Within this program it also possible to make a walk (or horseback excursion at extra charge) to the fantastic rock formations at Marcahuasi. Incidentally this area is also one of the best to find Canyon Canastero and Andean Condor. Another option is hiking to the Puya Raimondi stand above Vicas. Here there is also a relatively good hotel that can be used as base.

Another option is to do two or more day trips from Lima, to sample the best birds. See the day tours specified above.. You can stay comfortably in a Lima Hotel (you can choose between different price ranges), and have a wide selection of restaurants availble and wifi internet at the hotel to keep in contact with your friends. If you only do two day trips you will not reach the Polylepis Woodland where the White-cheeked Cotinga occurs. Adding a third day for the Polylepis, you may either drive via Marcapomacocha or via Santa Eulalia. Estimate 4-5 hours to get to the Polylepis from Lima. You can cut this driving time by either staying in Santa Eulalia  Huachupampa cutting 2.5 hours or in San Mateo (cuttng 2.5 hours)



Option: 2 days Days: 2
Price: US$ 560 (Minimum 5 people).
Less than 5 people: (see pricing)
Includes transport, guiding, checklist, food and snacks and hotel in Huachupampa. Price does not include hotel and dinner day 2.


Option: 3 days Days: 3
Price: US$ 840 (Minimum 5 people).
Less than 5 people: (see pricing)
Includes transport, guiding, checklist, food and snacks and hotel in Huachupampa and San Mateo or Chicla. Price does not include hotel and dinner day 3.


Posted on BirdForum

Just returned from a great trip to Peru. Didn't do the east slope (with megadiversity) but did do Amazonas at Los Amigos biological station, Abra Malaga, Tumbes, Chaparri Lodge, Santa Eulalia, Cusco to Machu Picchu and Agua Calientes.

540+ species including 34 +/- antbirds. Had Point-tailed Palmcreeper at Los Amigos, fleeting look at Royal Cinclodes (will not count in my book but glad they are still at Abra Malaga (also had an adult Andean Condor there too).

Despite rumors of their demise we had 20+ Humboldt Penguins at Pucusana just an hour south of Lima as well as Seaside Cinclodes, Peruvian Thick-knee, and Slender-billed Finch at Canaette.

Kolibri was an excellent company with great guides in each location that really knew their birds and the best places to find them.

Brian Allen

Dear Gunnar,
I wanted to thank you again for all of you help and extra effort on our behalf in getting the trip to Santa Eulalia together at the end of last month.  We had a fantastic time and really enjoyed the area.
Mark Lockwood
Secretary, Texas Bird Records Committee
Dear Gunnar,
I got back to my house late on the 23rd. I was exhausted! It was a long day of travel and a long trip in Peru with over 24 days of birding. One of the highlites of my time in Peru was the 3 day trip that I took with you and Simon. I saw over 50 life birds in those days; some of them were endemics or otherwise rare(the Shrike-Tyrants; White-cheeked Cotinga; etc.) but all of them were interesting. I particularly remember watching 2 Giant Coot building a nest and the graceful flight of Condors. The scenary was also beautiful.....
......Finally, I want to thank you for arranging this trip for me. It worked out great in many ways. Fortunately I did adapt to the altitude while I was in the Cusco area and was able to sleep quite well on the nights prior to meeting you in Lima. As a result I had the energy to really enjoy your 3 day tour.

Good birding,
Peter Coburn
The trip was great.  All three of the guides--Jean-Paul, Saturnino, and Alejandro--were excellent.  They did a great job finding birds and dealing with logistics so that everything went as smoothly as possible.  It would have been nice to have an extra day on the Machu Picchu-Abra Malaga trip so that I could have gone to Abra Malaga in the morning--we were caught in an afternoon thunderstorm up at the top of the polylepis forest!  The pelagic was great and I was glad to get the opportunity to go down to Pantanos de Villa as well.  
Thank you for your help in arranging everything.  It was a great experience and I hope that I can get back down there again!  
Marianne Batchelder  Abra Malaga, Pelagica and Pantanos de Villa, November 2011

Copyright © 2012 Kolibri Expeditions. All rights reserved.
Telephone: +51-1- 652 76 89. From the US: 011-51-1- 652 76 89. Cell: 988 555 938 (Gunnar) or 999 007 886 (Elia Gallo) - Email: kolibriexp@gmail.com