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Birding Peru: Tambopata & Photography Tour - 9 Days

Birding Peru: Tambopata & Photography Tour

Tambopata & Photography Tour

This 9-day birding Peru photography tour examines the amazing biodiversity of South-Eastern Peruvian Amazonia.

Our “Southern Peru Birding Tour: Amazonian Lowlands and Tambopata River” offers a fantastic and unique opportunity for birdwatching in Amazonia. Manu and Tambopata are probably two of the best birding experiences in the neo-tropics. When birding the Amazonian lowlands, you will have the chance to see/hear more than 1000 bird species between the Manu and the Tambopata areas.

After flying from Lima to Puerto Maldonado, we will take a boat up the Río Madre de Dios to Los Amigos Biological Station (also known as CICRA) for birding the Amazonian lowlands. The fabulous trail system at Los Amigos allows visiting different kinds of habitats like terra firme and varzea forests, palm swamps, and bamboo patches. The diversity of wildlife in this area is just astonishing (birds, monkeys, frogs, snakes). Los Amigos is probably the best area in Peru for raptors and monkeys.

Then we will go back to Puerto Maldonado to take another boat to the Tambopata National Reserve. Inside the reserve, we stay at three different lodges: Posada Amazonas, Tambopata Research Center, and Refugio Amazonas. In Tambopata, we plan to stay most of our time at Tambopata Research Center, where bird diversity is just amazing. We will visit the canopy tower, the macaw clay lick (the largest macaw clay lick known in Peru), oxbow lakes with Giant River Otters and Caimans. Also, there is a good chance we will see anacondas, jaguars and tapirs.

The Southern Peru Birding Tour ends in the city of Puerto Maldonado, where we will take a flight back to Lima. Birding Manu and Tambopata will be the birding experience of your lifetime.

Day 1
Day 1 - Lima

Arrive in Lima.

Overnight at Wyndham Lima Airport Hotel.

Meals: None

Day 2
Day 2 - Lima - Puerto Maldonado

Morning flight to the city of Puerto Maldonado. There we will be transferred to the Tambopata River Port where we will take a boat to Posada Amazonas. During our journey by boat, we will have the chance to see birds like Pied Lapwing, Collared Plover, King Vulture, Bat Falcon, Amazonian and Russet-backed Oropendolas, Ringed and Amazon Kingfisher, and many others. We will take a box-lunch before getting on the boat.

We will be arriving at the lodge mid-afternoon.

Afternoon hike along one of the several trails around the lodge looking for Pale-winged Trumpeter, Spix’s Guan, Rufous Motmot, Amazonian Motmot, Broad-billed Motmot, White-throated Antbird, Band-tailed Manakin, Casqued Cacique, and many more.

Overnight at Posada Amazonas Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, box-lunch, dinner.

Day 3
Day 3 - Posada Amazonas Lodge

Before breakfast we will visit the canopy tower. Many of the trees in the Peruvian Amazon grow to heights of 30 plus meters (100 feet or more). It’s a challenge to see birds that frequent the tall canopy of the rainforest when looking from the ground so we will watch from a canopy tower where you can get a closer, eye-level view of colourful toucans, parrots, macaws, tanagers, jacamars, trogons, woodpeckers, monkeys, and other rainforest wildlife.

Then we will visit the Tres Chimbadas oxbow lake. The lake is thirty minutes by boat from Posada Amazonas. Once there we will paddle around the lake in a catamaran, searching for the resident family of Giant River Otters and other lakeside wildlife such as Black Caiman, Hoatzin, Horned Screamers, Scarlet and Red-and-Green Macaws, and more.

Then we depart on a short hike in a bamboo patch near Tres Chimbadas Lake. We will be looking for bamboo specialists like White-cheeked Tody-tyrant, Peruvian Recurvebill, Red-billed Scythebill, Rufous-headed Woodpecker, Rufous-breasted Piculet, Brown-rumped Foliage-gleaner, Large-headed Flatbill, Dusky-tailed Flatbill, Bamboo Foliage-gleaner, Flammulated Bamboo-tyrant, Dot-winged and Ornate Antwrens, White-lined Antbird, Rufous-capped Nunlet, Pheasant Cuckoo, and many others.

After lunch we can spend the afternoon exploring and birding the trails around the lodge.

Overnight at Posada Amazonas Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Day 4
Day 4 - Posada Amazonas Lodge - Tambopata Research Center lodge (TRC)

Today we will go by boat to Tambopata Research Center. During the boat trip we could find Capped Heron, Cocoi Heron, Large and Yellow-billed Tern, Black Skimmer, the classic Horned Screamer, Razor-billed Curassow, Blue-throated Piping-guan and Orinoco Goose. Every now and then macaws, toucans and raptors will be spotted flying above us. Also, Tapirs, Jaguars and Ocelots could be seen on the river banks.

We will take a box-lunch on the boat. We will be arriving to the lodge by late afternoon.

Overnight at TRC Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, box-lunch, dinner.

Day 5
Days 5 to 7 - Tambopata Research Center

For three days, we will explore different kinds of forest habitats.

The Macaw clay lick is the largest in the country where hundreds of parrots and macaws of up to 15 species congregate daily. We can expect to see ten to twelve of the following members of the parrot family: Red-and-green, Blue-and-yellow, Scarlet, Red-bellied, Chestnut-fronted and Blue-headed Macaws; Mealy and Yellow-crowned Amazons; Blue-headed, Orange-cheeked and Black-legged Parrots; Dusky-headed, White-eyed, Cobalt-winged and Tui Parakeets, and Dusky-billed Parrotlets. Jaguars and Ocelots are also sometimes present at the clay lick hunting for big birds.

Floodplain and Terra Firme Forest. We will explore the quintessential rainforest on the five-mile Ocelot Trail and the five-mile Toucan Trail systems. The Ocelot Trail is in the floodplain with ponds (anacondas and jaguars are possible in this kind of habitat) and streams forming during the rainy season. The Toucan Trail however, is amongst tall rainforest that rarely or never floods. Both of these trails represent the most speciose habitats for birds. Too many possibilities to list, this is habitat for Starred Wood-Quail, Pale-winged Trumpeter, several Trogons, Foliage-gleaners, many Woodcreepers, Antbirds, Flycatchers, Manakins, and much more. Mixed species flocks are especially diverse with understory flocks led by Dusky-throated Antshrike and Red-crowned Ant-tanagers. They often contain 30-40 species (or more!) including Plain-winged Antshrike, Bluish-slate Antshrike, White-eyed Antwren, Thrush-like Antpitta, White-winged Shrike-tanager, Amazonian Barred Woodcreeper and Spix's Woodcreeper. The Ocelot trail also crosses some permanently flooded old ponds inhabited by Agami Heron, Rufescent Tiger-Heron, Green-and-rufous Kingfisher, and Sunbittern.

Riparian Habitat. We will explore older river created habitats at the pond five minutes upstream from TRC (anacondas also possible here!) – forests of Cecropia and Balsa Wood with a bamboo understory. This is the habitat of the legendary Rufous-fronted Antthrush, we could also find Lemon-throated Barbet, Spot-breasted Woodpecker, Cabanis Spinetail, Amazonian Antpitta, Blackish Antbird, Fuscous Flycatcher, Guira Tanager and Orange-backed Troupial. As we exit the pond's forests, we will bird on grassy areas with Tessaria and young Cecropia trees. These are not very diverse for birds but are the main habitat for Plain-crowned and Dark-breasted Spinetails, Mottle-backed Elaenia, Spotted Tody-Flycatcher, Floodplain Thrush, Orange-headed Tanager, and Seedeater species among others.

Transitional forests above the clay lick. These were bamboo forests until they flowered and died out a few years ago. Now they are akin to riparian forests but will eventually grow into terra firme as they are not affected by yearly floods. Here we would spot White-throated Jacamar, Buff-throated Saltator, Amazonian Grey Saltator, Scarlet-hooded Barbet, Crested and Russet-backed Oropendolas, Piratic Flycatcher, Yellow-billed Nunbird and others. While birding these spots we will have extraordinary views of the Tambopata river winding its way from the highlands.

Night walks. We will venture out near the lodge trying to spot-light a Pauraque, Tawny-bellied Screech-Owl, Great Potoo, Long tailed Potoo, Ocellated Poorwill and if we are lucky a Mottled Owl or Crested Owl.

Overnight at TRC lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Day 8
Day 8 - Tambopata Research Center - Refugio Amazonas

Early morning transfer by boat to Refugio Amazonas Lodge, where we will be arriving at around noon.

In the afternoon we will be birding at a relaxed pace around the lodge. Since Refugio Amazonas is built on land which was once part of a timber concession and cattle ranch the forest on parts of our trail system are in secondary forests. This means the birds we will be looking for are: Barred Antshrike, Short-tailed Pygmy-tyrant, Streaked Flycatcher, Boat-billed Flycatcher, Solitary Cacique, Grey-fronted Dove, Ruddy Ground-dove and others.

Overnight at Refugio Amazonas Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, box-lunch, dinner.

Day 9
Day 9 - Refugio Amazonas - Puerto Maldonado - Lima

Morning transfer to Puerto Maldonado, before heading to the airport we will have a typical farewell lunch in the native community of Infierno.

Afternoon flight to Lima for your international connections.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch.

Some of the wildlife expected to see in this trip are:

Pied Lapwing, Pale-winged Trumpeter, Spix’s Guan, Rufous Motmot, Amazonian Motmot, Broad-billed Motmot, Band-tailed Manakin Hoatzin, Horned Screamer, Chestnut-fronted Macaw, Scarlet Macaw, Red-and-Green Macaw, Razor-billed Curassow, Orinoco Goose, Rufescent Tiger-Heron, Rufous-fronted Antthrush, Lemon-throated Barbet, Scarlet-hooded Barbet, Great Potoo, Spotted Tody-Flycatcher, Short-tailed Pygmy-tyrant, White-throated Jacamar, Giant River Otter, Black Caiman, Jaguar, Ocelot

What is included?

  • Lodging as described in the itinerary (Some hotels might change dependig on room's availability)
  • Transportation: Private boat for all tours inside the reserve (you will have a shared bus to get in and out of the river port in Puerto Maldonado, and a shared boat to get in and out of each lodge)
  • English speaking bird guide
  • All entrance fees for nature reserves
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Applicable taxes, fees, and licenses

What is not included?

  • International or domestic airfares
  • Airport departure taxes or visa fees
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Additional nights during the trip due to flight cancellations
  • Alcoholic beverages or bottled water
  • Insurance of any kind
  • Laundry
  • Phone calls or messages
  • Reconfirmation of flights
Wildlife Reviews
4.89 stars
- based on 3  reviews
  1. Wonderful wildlife tour in Peru
    Nigel Watson25 May 2016







    Wilson Diaz of Green Tours of Peru, provided a wildlife tour in Peru for my wife and I and two friends. We met him at the Rutland bird fair which gave us the confidence to book through him. We thoroughly enjoyed our tour of Southern Peru and the Manu Road. Our guide was called Alex, who was excellent throughout. His knowledge of the birds and wildlife was superb. He knew the calls of all the birds and where to find them. The organisation from Wilson's team was very professional and we look forward to going to Northern Peru sometime soon with him.
  2. Superb birding tour in N Peru
    Josh Jones29 Apr 2016







    Wilson and his team are extremely knowledgeable, friendly and welcoming guides. They made our trip to Northern Peru both seamless and memorable - we saw many of the region's most desirable birds thanks to their skill and intuition. Highly recommended!
  3. Northern Peru\'s birding route
    Steve Cale11 May 2016







    We had a brilliant trip in Northern Peru with Wilson. Loads of superb wildlife sightings, good accomodation, good food & a well organised trip. Thge sites we visited were excellant & I would not hestiate to travel with Wilson again, who is a good leader & organised all the tour logistics spot on. highlights were so many it's hard to pick out the best but probably for me it has to be the 13 Andean Condors in the air at once as we crossed the Andeas, some of which were right over our heads, excellant, thanks Wilson.

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Why book with Green Tours?

Green Tours, the trade name of Cheqa Peru SRL, is a Peruvian tour operator company stablished in 2006 with the objective to offer high quality ground services for tourism operations in Peru with innovation, comfort, safety, and commitment with our social and environmental responsibilities. The last few years Green Tours has established itself as an important Peruvian tour operator, providing ground logistics for American, Canadian and British birding companies like Wings, Paradise Birding, Sunrise Birding, Worldwide Birding Tours, Sierra Club, Avocet Tours, and Heatherlea. Green Tours is part of a Carbon Neutral partnership to offset the carbon footprint for its operations, with this partnership we are helping to improve the conservation efforts in the Tambopata National Reserve. Also, since 2016 we are supporting small conservation efforts in north western Peru for the conservation of the habitat of the tropical dry forest, specially the habitat of the Peruvian Plantcutter. Currently, our General Manager is the executive director of APTAE (the Peruvian Association for Eco and Adventure Tourism). Our Sales and Marketing Manager, Wilson Díaz, is an active birder and has been travelling with birding groups since 2001 providing logistic support for several companies. Also, we have created “Asociación Green Tours”, a non-profit organization aimed to support conservation initiatives for endangered species like Grey-bellied Comet and Peruvian Plantcutter.

How do I pay, and what are the terms, for this trip?

Please refer to www://greentours.com.pe/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Booking-terms-and-conditions.pdf for our booking terms and conditions

Do you ever change the tour leader or itinerary? If so, what sort of notice do you give?

Usually we do not change our tour leader or itineraries once their confirmed. Nevertheless, if we have to do so before the trip starts and it is due to circumstances beyond our control, we will send an emal to all participant indicating the changes.

Can you book accommodation for us prior to the start of the trip?

Yes we surely can. You just have to send us an email detailing your request.

Join Our Fixed Tour Starting Date

Tour DatesTour AvailabilityFrom PriceSpaces Left
06/11/2020 - 14/11/2020available USD 3,090
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9 Days

Price & Availability

USD3,090 / per person
Based on twin/double room
This tour is operated by: Green Tours

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Operator Review Summary

4.93 Based on 7 reviews

Tour Facts

  • Southern Peruvian Amazonia
  • Set Departure Tour
  • Set Departure
  • Birds
  • 4 to 6 pax
  • 9 days
  • Leisurely
  • English
  • Lima Airport
  • Lima airport