Cock of the Rock lek and other birdlife of the cloudforests - pristine Amazonian rainforest birding
1. Depart UK, arrive Lima.
2. To Cusco and at leisure time to explore the city.
3. The Road to Manu, birding to Cock of the Rock Lodge.
4. Birding in the cloudforest.
5. To Atalaya and motorised canoe to Manu Learning Centre. Relax at the lodge.
6. Early start to the colpa. Rest of day birding around the lodge.
7. To Manu birding from the boat en route.
8. Bird watching and other nature activities at Manu.
9. Bird watching en route to Manu Wildlife Centre.
10.To Puerto Maldonado. Fly to Lima. Depart Peru.
11. Arrive UK.
With more time you could also visit Abra Malaga woodlands, the altiplano around Lake Titicaca, and the Colca Canyon famous for condors; continue from Puerto Maldonado to Tambopata Research Centre or travel north to Cajamarca and Chachapoyas for endemics and near endemics.
This suggested itinerary is just an example of possibilities available for bird watching holidays to Peru. Price is dependant on season, standard of accommodation and length of stay. Please contact us for prices.
Shared fixed departure dates, please enquire. Private departures based on 4 persons travelling.
Birding this route with terrific local guides makes this one of the world's most memorable bird watching journeys. Manu in the heart of the Amazon rainforest and the cloudforests of the Andes above are full of diverse bird life with many endemic and rare species making this a bird watchers dream holiday.
Ascend over the high Andes as you leave the cultural centre of Cusco before descending through the cloudforests of the Andes where the male Cock-of-the-Rock puts on spectacular displays at a lek; to the Amazon rainforest and the very special area of Manu where over 500 species have been recorded in the area.
A long day from Cusco will yield ducks and egrets, eagles and seed eaters as you enjoy your first bird watching at the wetlands of Huarcarpay before passing over the grasslands of high Andean passes that reach 3900m before plummeting into forests and gorges along the only road in this part of Peru that descends to tributaries of the mighty Amazon. With plenty of stops en route you will should see mountain finches, quetzals, motmots, numerous species of the ubquitous tanagers, flycatchers including the Inca flycatcher and as evening draws in perhaps nightjars. You will stay at the aptly named Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge for 2 nights with a full day bird watching on the trails around the lodge and can enjoy visiting the lek.
A final morning here allows time for some more birding before you descend further to Amerindian villages and on to Manu Learning Centre. Here the highlight is an early morning bird watching at the collpa or clay-lick that sees macaws and many parrot species on their daily visit. Later you can explore the trails looking for egnimatic forest species such as antbirds, antwrens, antshrikes, foliage gleaners, tanagers, grossbeaks and barbets.
Travelling on by boat into the heart of Manu is a delight as you bird from the river constantly scanning the banks and the sky: another cocoi heron or a skimmer, a pair of parrots flying over, blue & yellow macaws, a king vulture overhead …. Another full day ends at Romero Rainforest Lodge.
With a wide variety of habitats the area around this lodge within Manu National Park is a bird watchers paradise and time bird watching here will pass all too quick. However, the journeys is no less rewarding as you venture down the mighty Madre de Dios River by boat to reach Manu Wildlife Centre. Here there is another macaw clay-lick nearby as well as oxbow lakes where horned screamer frequent as well as a tower close to the lodge for observing canopy species. On the mammalian MWC also has a lick frequented by tapir.
Finally you will enjoy your final bird watching of the holiday as you travel downstream by boat and vehicle to reach Puerto Maldonado from where you can fly to Lima and connect with your international flight with your head whirring from so many terrific bird watching encounters.