Manu Birding Trip

Cusco - Cloud Forest - Cock of the Rock Lodge - Guadalupe Nature Reserve - Rainforest


5 Days

Max. Altitude

1.837 ft - 560 m.


Bird Watching, Photography, Wild Life, Medicinal Plants, Traditions, History.




Van, Boat and Canoe

Tour Description

Birding in Manu highly recommended to enjoy the spectacular bird diversity and magnificent scenery a transect running from the Andes to the Lowland rainforest passes through a wide range of habitats, the andes, elfin forest, cloud forest, foothill forest, swampy forest and finally the rainforest lowland, the Manu Park is located at the southeastern of Peru which offers a fascinating journey into the heart of cloud forest and incredible number of species over 1000 species have been reported so far, this is truly a paradise of birds and probably the route of the greatest avian diversity in the world.

Along the cloud forest Andean bird species predominate with large number of colorful tanagers forming the basis of the large mixed species flocks that are often encountered here, other specialties includes the Peruvian endemic red and white antpitta. This is the elevation where the species is most frequently reported and its challenging to observe because of the moisture concentration. While birding in Manu you discovers the richness of the Manu avian diversity that shelters a great diversity of wildlife as well and endemism significantly contributing to the megadiversity of the nation.

Excellent for:

Birdwatching, Wildlife spotting and Bird Photography.

Ideal for viewing:

Andean Cock of Rock, Red and White Anpitta, at least 5 species of macaws, Toucans, Woodpeckers, Antbirds, Tanagers Flock, Bamboo Bird Specialist.


Cusco – Cock of the Rock Lodge

From 11.647 ft to 5.200 ft

This morning we travel along the Andes, our trip we will pass through inter Andean valleys and this provides great chances to search for a couple of endemics from the Andean side, Bearded mountaineer, Chestnut breasted mountain finch and other interesting bird for the high Andean mountains such as; Andean Flicker, mountain Caracara, Andean lapwing and if lucky enough dotterel that are seasonal visitors to the agricultural fields.

We continue to the Colonial town of Paucartambo, from there we go up to Acjanaco pass at 3600 meters in elevation where a ranger post marks the most Southern point of the Park up there the vegetation is scattered and we will look for birds of the high mountain forest, Chestnut-bellied mountain-tanager, Tawny-rumped tyrannulet, Band-tailed and Barred fruiteater in the mixed flocks, among others. While transecting along the Cloud Forest, we will make walks in search of bird species, as we continuing driving down into the mountain the vegetation will gradually have changed into a more dense vegetation it holds birds species like Golden headed quetzals, Stripe-faced Wood-quail, Yungas pigmy owl , Blue-banded toucanet Crimson-mantled woodpecker, Mountain cacique and mixed flocks as they are more frequently to find them flying across the road.

During the afternoon our target bird would be the Cock of the rocks (Peru’s national bird) it more easy to find them while they are displaying at their lek, (the male birds are a vibrant reddish orange, and as many as several dozen get together for an exhibition of a mating ritual dance in a place called Lek) After this fascinating experience we will searching diligently for more species that are still found at this high ; Yungas Manakin, Quetzals, versicolored Barbed, Orange Eared Tanager, streak necked flycatcher, Andean Motmot among others. If lucky enough we may see the Lyre tailed nightjar during dusk. overnight at Cock of the Rock Lodge.


Cock of the Rock Lodge – Guadalupe Nature Reserve

From 5.200 ft to 1.837 ft

Today we wake up very early to observe Cock of the rocks (Rupicola peruviana), Peru’s national bird from a platform. The male birds are a vibrant reddish orange, and as many as several dozen get together for an exhibition of a mating ritual dance in a place called “Lek”. After this we will visit the flowers / feeders that attacks hummingbirds; in total we will be able to see around 13 species of them: Booted Racket Tail, Wire crested Thorntail, Gree Hermit, Buff Tailed Sicklebill, Many Spotted Hummingbird, Violet Fronted Brilliant, White Bellied Woodstar, Peruvian Piedtail, long Tailed Sylph, Wedge Billed Hummingbird, Speckled Hummingbird, Fawn Breasted Brilliant, and common Sparkling Violetear.

Along the walk we can also see species like: White crowned Tapaculo, Yungas Manakin, Crested Quetzal, versicolored Barbed, Orange Eared Tanager, streak necked flycatcher, Andean Motmot, and many more. After the morning activity we go out for a walk along a trail or road we can see more birds and such as: Slaty Gnateater,

Chestnut breasted Wren, Cinnamon faced Tyranulet, Spotted Nightingale Thrush, Tyrannine Woodcreeper, Masked Trogon, Crimson Bellied Woodpecker, Black Streaked puffbird, Paradise Tanager, Saffron Crowned Tanager, Golden Tanager, Brown Tinamou, and possibly Lanceolated monklet, Peruvian piedtail, black and chesnut hawk eagle. Later we head the mountains down to observe other interesting species such as; cerulean capped manakin, olive flycatcher, ornate flycatcher, yellow bellied antwren, olive flycatcher, cinnanmon faced tyrannulet, green hermit if lucky enough we may see the umbrella bird. Driving the mountains down we will arrive to our lodge Guadalupe Ecological Reserve.

Guadalupe Nature Reserve

1.837 ft

After breakfast we will explore the bamboo forest that holds an unique collection of birds such as; White checked tody-flycatcher, yellow tyrannulet, red billed scythebill, pavonie cuckoo, bamboo antshrike, blackish antbird, dot winged antwren, dusky checked foliage gleaner and the Black backed tody flycatcher, yellow billed nunbird after that we will explore the second growth forest to observe the blue headed Macaw, Chestnut fronted Macaw, Fiery capped Manakin, White eyed parakeet, Chestnut backed Antshrike, Golden Tanager, black hawk eagle, and much more.

A Picnic lunch while observing birds in the foothills mountains walking along the river and pastures we will be looking for seedeaters, sparrows, we will have chances to observe the plum throated cotinga, fine barred piculet, blue crowned and black tailed trogons, round tailed manakin and many more, walking in the afternoon we will have a greater chances to see common Pauraque and the spectacled owl. Overnight at Guadalupe Ecological Reserve.

Guadalupe Nature Reserve – Motor boat ride to Machuhuasi Oxbow Lake

1.837 ft

At dawn each animal songs with its own unique voice being a natural awake call and a moderate walking early provides a good opportunity to experience the nature, we will pass by the palm forest to observe the beautiful blue and gold macaws and other animals, after breakfast will descend out of the foothills, the road crosses a low set of hills where we get the Alto Madre de Dios River where the Alto Madre de Dios river starts off rocky and fast with herons, egrets often seen foraging on the rocky gravel bars and we will keep a close watch for other animals, we will specifically visit the Machu-wasy lagoon, where we will see hoatzins one of the most strange Amazonian looking bird as well as variety of lake edge birds, black-capped donacobious, horned screamers, egrets, herons, wood-rails, flycatchers among others.

In the afternoon, we will start another walk through the different types of forest rich in biodiversity as we move deep into the heart of the evergreen forest following the trails that goes to the giant kapok tree, we may get to see other types of birds.

We will return to Atalaya Port by motor boat and passing by some second growth forest making our way back to the lodge which provides access to fascinating habitat, the diversity of the tree, occasionally the chances for seeing capuchin and red howler monkeys are so good, we will also visit a natural caves which is predilect site to spot the strange creatures such as spiders, bats, scorpions, after exploring the forest we will have a refreshing bath in the transparent river that flows from the core of the park.

Guadalupe Nature Reserve – Cusco

From 1.837 ft to 11.647 ft

After breakfast and early depart from Guadalupe Ecological Reserve to observe interesting birds along the road such as; buff tailed sicklebill, scarlet hooded barbet, great potoo, yellow browed tody-flycatcher, ruddy foliage-gleaner and other, later on we will pack our luggage to proceed with our return journey having some stops for birding along the way.


  • Birding Guide.
  • Tour Transport (van and Boat).
  • Entrances fees.
  • 3 meals a day.
  • 4 nights lodge at Cock of the Rock Lodge and Guadalupe Lodge (Private Toilets and Hot showers, electricity, rocking seat that overlooks the garden).
  • Mineral water and Snacks.
  • Rubber boots and Duffel bags.

Not included:

  • Tips, Extra expenses.
  • Binocular, Alcoholic drinks.
  • First Breakfast and last day dinner.
  • Original passport.
  • Binoculars.
  • Flashlight and extra batteries.
  • Small back pack and confortable shoes.
  • Rain jacket or poncho (December – April).
  • Three complete change of clothing.
  • Sport sandals or water shoes.
  • Personal hygiene products.
  • Hat or cap to protect you from the sun.
  • Sun block (sun protection cream).
  • Insect repellent.
  • Snacks, chocolate, dried fruit, etc.
  • Camera, plenty of film and batteries.
  • Sunglasses
  • Extra Money (soles).
  • Swimwear.


As soon as people book their trip to Peru, specifically Cusco, they start wondering about altitude sickness. The air at high altitudes contains less oxygen than at sea level and forces your body to work harder to get the oxygen it needs. Over several days at high altitude, your body adjusts to the lower amount of oxygen in the air.

With altitude sickness, you may first feel like you have the flu or a hangover. You may have a headache, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea or vomiting, dizziness, trouble sleeping, trouble breathing during exercise. If any of these effects become severe, please contact our office and we will help you get to a doctor.

Most of the time, these symptoms will be mild. We always recommend easing into activity slowly, allowing your body to adjust. Drink plenty of fluids such as water or coca tea. Coca tea has been used since ancient times to help prevent altitude sickness. Leaves from the coca plant contain alkaloids which helps bring oxygen into your blood, helping your body avoid the effects of altitude sickness. Avoid drinking a lot of alcohol and coffee. They will cause you to urinate more often and become dehydrated. Avoid smoking. Smoking makes it more difficult for your body to get oxygen. Avoid sleeping pills. They may cause shallow breathing at night, making it more difficult for your body to absorb oxygen while you sleep.

Your healthcare provider may prescribe medicines, such as acetazolamide and dexamethasone, to help prevent altitude sickness. Start the medicine two days before you get to a high altitude. Continue to take it while you are at high altitude.


Of course weather is unpredictable. Typically the dry season in Cusco is from April through October, but this does not stop rain from falling in June or the sun from coming out in December – just be prepared. No matter what month you are doing the trek, please make sure that you have rain gear that includes a waterproof jacket, pants, poncho and waterproof gloves.

Also prepare for four seasons. Many of the treks through the Andes involve many micro-climates and you will need to be prepared for all seasons. Layers are always key as they are easy to adjust to the different temperatures. And evenings will always be cold, so please be prepared with a warm, winter-weight jacket.

Can I design my own trip?

Absolutely. If you want you can change the program according  your interest, just let us know and the Neotropic Travel Designer is going to give you more options.

Are flights included?

Unfortunately no. Neotropic Peru does not include flights for this trip.

Can I bring my luggage to Manu?

All larger luggage should stay in Cusco and can be stored either at your hotel or with us at our deposit.

Which Vaccines Do I Need for Peru?

Vaccines for Peru vary based on your specific itinerary. A Passport Health travel specialist will help you decide which vaccines are best for you. The CDC and WHO have recommended that travelers receive the following vaccines:

  • Yellow Fever
  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B

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