Located east of the eastern cordillera of the Andes, it comprises part of the departments of Cusco and Madre de Dios.
It can be reached by air (30 minutes by plane) or by land (by the route Pucartambo, Patria, K'osñipata). The most advisable thing is to take the organized and authorized services of a specialized agency.
It is the only place in the world in which three different ecosystems are perfectly differentiated: the puna, high altitude area and scarce vegetation, similar to the tundra, in which grows a type of yellowish grass called ichu, dotted with lakes of a deep blue and populated with flames of flat and hairy ears; the cloud forest, a world of mystery always bathed in intense fogs and populated by wild cocks of an intense and striking purple, spectacled bears and abundant ferns that hang from trees like endless and thick walls; and the low areas of tropical rainforest, populated by an infinity of huge black caimans, river wolves or giant otters, thirteen different species of monkey and more than a thousand different varieties of birds (10% of those in the world ). In the higher areas the temperature ranges between 3ºC and 6ºC, in the lower part the annual average is approximately 24ºC.
The Manú Biosphere Reserve has always enjoyed some protection thanks to the remoteness of its location and the presence of indigenous tribes. At present, four different ethnic groups live in the Manú, two of them still remain isolated from any contact with civilization, in a protected territory of 1,716,295.22 hectares. Of an area equivalent to half of Switzerland, the Manú is probably the most species-rich protected area on the planet.
The great variation of altitudinal floors allows the existence of a great variety of species and forms of plants, estimating between 2000 to 5000 species of flowering plants. In a referential way, 179 species of orchids have been recorded in the cloud forest.
The great diversity of ecosystems has allowed the development of one of the largest samples of fauna diversity in the world. The Manú National Park hosts a wide variety of birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians, as well as invertebrates. In mammals, 200 species have been identified (around 40% of mammals throughout Peru). The birds constitute a very important population and of an admirable variety that surpasses the 1000 species.
The basins of the Alto Madre de Dios and Manu rivers are areas of traditional settlement of various indigenous groups: the Matsiguenka, Yora, Yine, Harakmbut, Maschco-Piro and Amaguancas, which belong to different linguistic families. The vast majority of them are organized in native communities; others live in voluntary isolation, apparently rejecting all contact with modern society. In the Andean zone there are rural communities of Quechua origin.
Ask your travel agency.