IQUITOS TOUR / AMAZON PERU
Iquitos is the largest city in the Peruvian rainforest, with a population of 370,962. It is the capital of Loreto Region and Maynas Province. It is generally considered the most populous city in the world that cannot be reached by road.
Located on the Amazon River, it is a mere 106 m (348 ft) above sea level even though it is more than 3,000 km (1,864 mi) from the mouth of the Amazon at Belém in Brazil, on the Atlantic Ocean. It is situated 125 km (78 mi) downstream of the confluence of the Ucayali and Marañón rivers, the two main headwaters of the Amazon River. Iquitos has long been a major port in the Amazon Basin. It is surrounded by three rivers: the Nanay, the Itaya, and the Amazon.
DAY 01 LODGE
Our guide collects you from the airport or your hotel; the transfer by bus from Iquitos airport to the Bellavista port is a 1/2 hour ride. On the way we pass the fascinating vibrant jungle metropolis with historical roots in the rubber boom.
We head towards the Bellavista harbor on the Nany River to board our speedboat for a 45 minute trip up the Nanny and Momon rivers (Note: It is quite possible that you will share the boat trip with other passengers who are entering the lodge at the same time).
On the way we observe the Nanay and Amazon River, you will note the “meeting of the waters” a blending of the Amazon which is brown and Nanay which is black water. (Sometimes you can see the pink or gray dolphins).
We will appreciate our natural wonder that is the “Amazon River”
Visit to “Barrio Florido” – Fundo Don Pedrito a small village where you can see Victoria Regia plants, and see a collection of aligators and paiche fish.
On the way to the lodge we stop to visit the Serpentarium. A local Peruvian man has a fine collection of wild animals including Boa and Anaconda snakes, monkeys, jungle cats and sloths. He is happy for you to pick up the animals and take plenty of photographs. This is actually a real fun part of the whole jungle tour experience as it is the only time that you can really get up close and personal with the animals!
Upon arrival at the Lodge we are warmly greeted with a welcome drink made of local tropical fruits. Our Guide will explain the activities and he will give an orientation of the bungalows and the main facilities available at the Lodge.
We have our first taste of the delicious food in our restaurant “The Hungry Monkey”.
Free Afternoon: Boating, walking excursion or If you prefer, time to relax at the lodge such as the large swimming pool, the water slide, the Jacuzzi as well as going to the top of our two towers to enjoy the view or relaxing on the balcony overlooking the Momon river to watch the boats sailing by and observe the birdlife.
After dinner your Guide fascinates us with tales of the jungle, telling us about jungle folkore: Tales of pink dolphins that turn into humans and seduce young maidens, the whistling of the Tunchi, and the one-legged ELF known as the Chulluchuki.
DAY 02: LODGE
(Optional) We rise at the crack of dawn, around 05:30 AM, for an hour long canoe ride up river to enjoy the great variety of bird life. Many bird species of the Amazon are active at this hour feeding on fruit trees and diving into the river to catch small fish. We hear their joyful singing as they fly around.
After breakfast: Hike through the jungle to explore the rainforest. We visit the river communities of Gen Gen and Centro Fuerte where we will learn the customs and habits of the mestizo people who live on the river banks of the Amazon region. These “River People” are humble subsistence farmers and fishermen. In their small plots they harvest manioc tuber and plantains. They use small canoes and fishing nets to harvest the abundant variety of fish in the river. We will have a game of football against the local villagers from Gen Gen or Centro Fuerte (optional).
Visit the Botanical Garden “Chullachaki”. The owner will give an explanation about medicinal plants growing in this beautiful garden.
We visit the ‘Alamas’ Indigenous Tribe. They recently moved to our area and they have built a small community with a large communal hut where they offer us a typical friendly greeting. They dance and sing and perform their traditional rituals. They offer us their home made handicrafts made out of local plants, seeds and wood from the area.
After the delicious evening meal we motor our way up river with our long canoe; after a while the Guide switches off the engine and in complete silence we drift downstream under the moon and stars, enjoying the chorus of nocturnal animals, fire flies, insects, frogs, birds, owls, jumping fish and other creatures of the night.
DAY 03: LODGE
After breakfast we will travel by boat to Piranha Park a private reserve. It is a place to enjoy nature; there are five lakes, in one of them you can fish piranhas, in another other fish of the region, take a ride on a cayak; you can observe primates, a great variety of trees with long fibers and medicinal plants; you can see Victoria Regia, considered the largest water lilies; they have large round leaves measuring up to 1 meter in diameter, the flower is up to 40 cm diameter. They open from six in the evening, blooming from March to July. In this area you can find virgin forest and explore the mysteries of our jungle.
Afternoon: Take a hike to the Trapiche where you will see the local sugar cane maker and taste his delicious sugar cane liquor.
Night tour: We will go for a walk to see and hear the sounds of the night; you can find some of the insects, snails, centipedes and frogs that produce the cacophony of sounds that begin after dark. Sometime you see tarantulas!
After dinner, we have a musical jungle jam session using a variety of local acoustic instruments that we keep by the Restaurant, such as harmonicas, guitars and flutes. Each of the tourists can pick an instrument and we can have fun playing and singing until the wee hours of the night.
DAY 04: LODGE/BORA INDIGENOUS TRIBE / IQUITOS /AIRPORT
On our final day, from here we make our way back to the city of Iquitos and on the way we make visits by boat, to the Boras Indigenous Tribe who lives further down the Momon River. They are a friendly tribe who will show us their traditional dancing and singing. The men chant and beat their drums and the women sing and dance playfully. After several songs the young Indian girls invite the tourists to join in the dancing and everybody ends up dancing together going round and round in big circles. After the dancing session is over we can take plenty of photos of the tourists together with the Indians and they will show us their lovely collection of handicrafts which they offer for sale to the visitors.
Visit to the Butterfly Farm, just off the Nanay River near the village of Padre Cocha. There is a large enclosed area which houses dozens of species of native butterflies. Here you can see and walk among many different species of the most beautiful butterflies of the Amazon region and experience their whole life circle. It`s also a unique opportunity to take photos of tropical butterflies in their natural environment. Back to the Lodge.
City tours: this program may vary according to various factors, such as what time of day tourist enters the Lodge on the first day, what time they leave on the last day, the weather conditions, and how active that the tourists wishes to be during the trip. All the tourist´s wishes should be communicated to the guide who will do his best to accommodate them.
The Boulevard: Located opposite the Itaya River, one block from the Main Square, overlooking the Amazon River; in the tour we observe important historical monuments, statues, restaurants and cafes.
The Main Square: Very colorful place and meeting point for tourists.
The Catholic Cathedral: The Cathedral of Iquitos known as the Mother Church of Iquitos, located in the center of Iquitos, at the intersection of Arica and Putumayo streets, was declared a Historic Cultural of the Nation of Peru in 1996, considered an icon of Iquitos.
The cast Iron House built by Eiffel, designed by the French architect Gustave Eiffel (of Eiffel Tower fame) in 1897.
We visit the Quistococha Zoo, located outside the city past the airport, about a 20 minute ride from downtown. Here we see a wonderful collection of different species of animals including large felines, many monkeys, colorful birds and the paiche fish, which have lungs and must surface occasionlly so that they can breathe. The zoo is built on the shores of the Quistococha Lake, which with its white sand beach is a popular bathing spot for the locals.
From here we make our way to the airport to catch your flight home.
“END OF TOUR”
You will be accompanied by a permanent English speaking Guide during your trip.
Note: We cannot bring tourists to the Lodge after 3pm. This is because there are floating logs on the river which cannot easily be seen by the boatsman at dusk or at nighttime. If they arrive in Iquitos at this time or later, they will have to spend the night in a hotel in the city and sail out on the following day.
Our service include:
- Free transport from the hotel or airport in our private bus to the port of Bellavista on the Nanay River. Boat ride in our own boat to the lodge.
- Transport by boat to the Bora Indian villages and the Serpentarium and back to the port of Bellavista. Transport by our own private bus back to the hotel or to the airport.
- Free use of all installations at the lodge wich include the swimming pool, the look-out tower, the musical instruments, the games rooms, the hammocks, the canoes, etc.
- Three meals a day during the whole period that the tourist is inside the lodge: breakfast, and lunch: Tea and coffee 24 hours a day from our hot water fountain. If the tourist arrives mid-aftermoon then dinner will be served. The same applies for the final day.
- Bottled water from a water fountain next to the bar and swimming pool, fresh fruit juices during breakfast.
- A permanent English speaking guide will be assigned to the tourists during their visit to the lodge and will stay with them until they leave. Guides are available in other languages upon request.
- All tours mentioned in the program are included in the price.
Our service does not include:
- Plane tickets.
- Food and drinks in the city of Iquitos the first and last day.
- All consumption at the bar, which includes bottled soft drinks and alcoholic beverages.
- Purchases made from the Indian tribes for their handicrafts
- Tips to the lodge staff on the final day (for good service if the tourists are happy) and tips to the guide for his service (if the tourists are happy).
- Any other personal costs not mentioned in this program.
We advise you to bring:
- Insect repellant
- Good walking shoes that cover the heals (to avoid twisting your ankle)
- Large sun hat
- Sun cream
- Camera with plenty of film and batteries
- Flashlight/torch to use at nighttime (plus spare batteries)
- Lightweight raincoat with rainproof hat
- Umbrella in case of rain
- A good book to read, plenty of magazines (to read while you relax)
- Pair of Binoculars
- Water flask (fresh drinking water for jungle treks)
- Swimming costume (for swimming in our large pool or in the river)
- The native Indian tribes in the area are very poor and love to receive gifts of used clothing, old toys or anything at all that the tourist does not need and wishes to donate. Also, any items for children such as paper, pencils and pens are very gratefully received.