The Manu National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest rain forest biosphere reserve in the world. Most of the park is highly protected and cannot be visited (Nucleo Zone). A designated area, the Reserve Zone, was made accessible for ecotourism. We are one of only a handful of companies with the possibility to operate tours in this untouched zone.
The Cultural Zone adjacent to the national park is also partly protected. It is sparsely populated and accessible for tourists without restrictions.
More biodiversity than in any other part of the world can be found in Manu. The altitude ranges from 150-4200 m above sea-level (lowland forest to andean cloud forest). There are also indigenous communities speaking other dialects in the remote areas, including the Machiguenga, the Mascho-Piro, the Yaminahua and the Amahuaca.
The immense variety of Manu National Park in terms of altitude, microclimate, soils and other ecological conditions results in a complex mosaic of habitats and niches. There is a broad spectrum of plant communities, ranging from the seemingly homogenous but highly diverse Andean grasslands to a range of mostly pristine forest types. Estimates of plant diversity range between 2,000 and 5,000, with some scientists even assuming considerably higher numbers. Records of fauna are similarly impressive with well over 1000 vertebrate species, including at least 200 species of mammals and more than 800 species of birds. Among the mammals are the Giant Otter, 13 different species of primates and 08 felids, including Jaguar, Puma and the elusive and endangered Andean Mountain Cat. The wide range of estimates in various taxonomic groups of fauna and flora illustrates how little is known, let alone understood about the diversity of life in the property. In the medium and longer term developments in the surroundings of Manu National Park such as gas extraction and road construction may affect the still mostly pristine property in various ways. Careful planning and management is needed to balance development needs with the integrity of a global conservation gem.