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Amazon Jungle Tours
Macaw clay lick Tours

Pongo de Mainique ( 4 days and 3 nights )
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Based on double occupancy and as a party of 2 at least, lodge rooms with sharing facilities

Pongo de Mainique, Cusco Peru adventure tours and expeditions
Area Map

The Pongo de Mainique is a 50-yard-wide, two-mile-long canyon, through which flows the mighty Urubamba River on its 451-mile path, north from Cusco and the Sacred Valley to a convergence with the Apurimac River. The Pongo, a natural splendor unrivaled in scenic beauty, boasts a unique biodiversity, immensely photogenic tropical forests, and a fair share of mystic history. Heavy mists sweep into the Pongo canyon from the Amazonian lowlands supporting a cloud-forest flora and fauna at a lower than normal elevation. Herein awaits a variety of wildlife species for the infrequent visitor: Spectacled Bears, Military Macaws, Woolly Monkeys, Black Spider Monkeys, Brown Capuchin Monkeys, and Golden-headed Quetzals. Over 30 waterfalls cascade down the black rock walls of the Pongo Canyon.


April 16,
May 14,
June 11, 25
August 6, 20
September 10, 24
October 01, 15
November 5


Day 1: Transfer in the morning from your Cusco hotel to the airport for a 50-minute flight in a twin-engine turbo-prop plane to the landing strip of the community of Timpia. We will then take a ten-minute walk to the river followed by a  10 minute boat ride to the Center. To reach the lodge from the river requires walking (fast or slow) up a 165-foot-high (50-meter-high), well-constructed staircase with a normal inclination designed for normal visitors. Lunch at the lodge and an afternoon outing to either a small river or to forest trails. Dinner and night at the Machiguenga Center.

Day 2: Morning visit to one of the two macaw clay licks that are accessible during this three-night itinerary (the third clay lick requires an overnight stay, and therefore requires a longer stay). Lunch at the lodge. We will then take an afternoon trip in small motorized Indian canoes up the Sihuaniro River or to visit the natural hot springs up the Timpia River (both these rivers are small tributaries of the Urubamba River). Dinner and a possible lecture at the Center.

Day 3: After breakfast, an all-day outing to the Pongo, which is approximately 60-75 minutes upstream from the Center. We will be able to explore the waterfalls and the forests of the Pongo area. There will be time to explore and  play in the waterfalls (bring a bathing suit or an extra change of clothing). We will then have a picnic lunch in or near the Pongo. The details of what you can do in the Pongo depend on the conditions of the river and the weather. If the water is at a normal level, then the boat can enter part of the Pongo. If the water is too high, then the Pongo will be enjoyed from a viewpoint downstream and from viewpoints above it (see text above). In practice, even in December-March, the chance of the Pongo being too high to go partway into it is only about 10%, and if you are lucky enough to see the Pongo in full flood, you will feel extremely privileged to see such a beautiful site.  

NOTE FOR MACAW LOVERS: If enough people wish to see more macaws and spend only the afternoon at the Pongo, it may be possible to arrange a morning visit to the second clay lick, or a second visit to the first clay lick and then lunch at the lodge and visit the Pongo in the afternoon only. 

Dinner and story-telling by Machiguenga will follow. Story-tellers.

Day 4: After breakfast and a possible visit to the closer of the two accessible clay licks (depends on weather conditions and the season of the year), we will take a short trip 15 minutes from the lodge up to the Timpia community center followed by a  10-minute walk up to the landing strip. Lastly, we will take a  50-minute flight back to Cusco. Transfer from the Cusco airport to your Cusco hotel. End of services.

Machiguenga Center Complex
The Machiguenga Center for Tropical Studies
macaw lick
Macaw Clay Lick
Pongo de Mainique
Machiguenga Fishing


INCLUDES: All hotel and lodge accommodations based on double occupancy.  All scheduled land, lake and river transportation. All transfers. All scheduled excursions with English-speaking guide services. All entrance fees. Meals as specified in the itinerary. B=Breakfast;L=Lunch;D=Dinner.

International or domestic airfares, airport departure taxes or visa fees, excess baggage charges, additional nights during the trip due to flight cancellations, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages or bottled water, snacks, insurance of any kind, laundry, phone calls, radio calls or messages, reconfirmation of international flights and items of personal nature.

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