DAY 1: Cusco-Cloud Forest Leaving Cusco we head over the Andes, stopping for a coffee at the beautiful colonial village of Paucartambo. Continuing, we climb to the highpoint of the Manu Biosphere at about 3,800 m before descending to the cloud forest. In these mysterious surroundings we take a hike to the lek of the incredible cock-of-the-rock, to see the 'performance' of the males right under our eyes. We spend our first night in the camping huts of Posada San Pedro (appr. 1,600 m).
DAY 2: Cloud Forest-Atalaya-Manu River At daybreak we continue by bus to tropical lowland rainforest. Here at the small village Atalaya at 650 m, we change into a motorized canoe to navigate down the turbulant Alto Madre de Dios River to Boca Manu. As night falls we make camp on one of the beaches.
DAY 3 & 4: Lake Salvador and Lake Otorongo On the morning of the third day we turn up the Manu River. From this vantage point we will have great views of riverside birds, sunbathing caiman, and the enormous aquatic guinea pig, the capybara. We reach our campsite deep inside Manu in the afternoon. This will be our base for the next two days. During this time, we will hike through virgin forest and explore one of the most beautiful lakes of the Manu basin, Lake Salvador, by catamaran. There is a chance to see a huge variety of colourful birds, numerous species of monkey and with luck, a family of giant otters. A five hour hike through the forest takes us to Lake Otorongo and a 20 metre-high observation platform that overlooks the lake. At night we can explore the forest by torchlight or go moonlight caiman spotting on the lake.
DAY 5: Lake Salvador- Beach Tambo Blanquillo After a final walk through the forest surrounding Lake Salvador, we return back down the Manu River. At Boca Manu we continue on the Madre de Dios River and we arrive at Blanquillo, near the claylick for macaws, where we spend the night on a beach.
DAY 6: Macaw Lick At first light we head to the macaw lick to watch the dazzling spectacle of hundreds of parakeets, parrots and macaws eating clay. In the afternoon we visit another one of Manu´s beautiful oxbow lakes, Cocha Kamungo. The night is comfortably spend in the jungle lodge Tambo Blanquillo.
DAY 7: Boca Manu-Cusco A short boat ride takes us to Boca Manu airport and our return flight over the rainforest and the Andes to Cusco by light aircraft.