7 Errors That You Can Not Commit When You Visit The Manu National Park
If Machu Picchu is the jewel in the crown of the Andean country in terms of Inca culture, the Manu National Park is number one in the category of jungle and wild nature. It is a magical place, isolated and one of the last bastions of this fragile ecosystem that still remains practically intact. Paradise blessed with the greatest biodiversity in the world, inhabited by native communities that still keep alive their ancestral traditions and live in harmony with nature. This fascinating destination is surrounded by beautiful landscapes and exotic animals in the Peruvian Amazon. Becoming an ideal place for those who love nature and like an experiential tourism.
If you are thinking to visit Manu National Park, here are some mistakes that can not ruin your travel experience.
1. Think that during the rainy season it is not advisable to visit Manu National Park
There are two main seasons to consider when visiting any part of the rainforest. The dry season runs from around May to November, with the wet season spanning from December until April. Each season has certain advantages.
During the dry season the jungle trails can be slightly easier with the firmer ground.
Temperatures are higher during the day and, while this can be nice at times, it can also bring unbearable midday heat. With the lower water levels, boat rides tend to take significantly longer.
During the wet season waters rise significantly and, in theory, animals are spread over a smaller land area. It is also a better time of year to spot reptiles and amphibians, while bird activity may be higher with the cloudy conditions. However, the increased rainfall can potentially affect your enjoyment. You can also expect a lot more mosquitos around this time.
As far as spotting wildlife goes, do not let the season influence your decision on when to travel. The reality is that the quality and experience of your guide makes the real difference. A little bit of luck always helps too!
2. Do not stop at the Tres Cruces Lookout Point to appreciate the sunrise
An additional 60km from Paucartambo, Mirador Tres Cruces is a lookout point over the meeting place of the Andes and the Amazon. On clear days, it’s possible to see the peak of the massif Ausangate all the way down into the depths on the jungle basin. In the dry season from May to August, a natural phenomenon causes the illusion of three rising suns that flicker into cross shapes – hence, “tres cruces.” As the sun rises, clouds begin to evaporate, the moisture interacts with the sunlight to form a prism. During the Virgen del Carmen festival, shared vans transport tourists to the lookout point in time to see the gradual lightening of the sky and the sun rising above a thick mat of clouds around 6 am.
3. Do not pack extra clothes
With the rain and humidity in Manu National Park, your clothes are likely to get wet during the day. It is, therefore, important to always have a dry change of garments ready in your jungle lodge at all times. For daytime wear, it is advisable to take light, long-sleeved clothing that will dry quickly, along with a hat and sun glasses. Your tour operator may supply you with boots and ponchos.
Clothing aside, sun cream and deet based insect repellant are essential. Torches and toilet paper are generally provided by the lodges, but it is no harm to bring your own just in case. In the virgin jungle, you may have to take a break from Facebook for few days. Therefore, it is recommended to take something for night time entertainment, such as a book.
4. Forget about medical care
Firstly, it is always advisable to consult a travel doctor prior to a visit Manu National Park or any other tropical region. The yellow fever vaccination is not a mandatory requirement for entry to the reserve, but is highly recommended nevertheless. Most visitors also take anti-malarial tablets even though there is an extremely low risk of contracting this.
Because you will be spending time in a remote area, you should always come prepared with basic medication such as diarrhoea and headache tablets.
5. Do not bring your children and leave them with a babysitter
Some lodges have policies with regard to the minimum age. However, eight years old and above is generally fine. What’s more, Manu National Park can be a perfect spot for children to fall in love with the miracle of nature. Jungle trails are not too taxing and, therefore, there is no maximum recommended age, as long as you are healthy and adventurous at heart.
6. Do not meet the native communities and live with them.
Human settlement is both fascinating and somewhat mysterious in Manu. Traditional ethnic groups, such as Machiguengas, Yora, Harakmbut and Yeni are well-documented. However, there are also other groups that have not been contacted by the outside world to date. The presence of such groups as the Amahuacas and Yaminahuas has only been referred to by other better known groups like the Machiguengas. There are also other groups that have taken complete refuge in the thickest parts of the virgin jungle.
7. Do not take care of the Manu National Park
According to the latest study by the Network Team-Network, this protected area of the Peruvian jungle is the most biodiverse place on the planet. Its objective is to protect and preserve intact ecosystems, which can hold a high biological diversity and relevant esthetical and landscape attractions, where indirect use activities can be done like: research, education, tourism and recreation.
When we are allowed to visit Manu National Park, it is to learn and enjoy the pristine nature of these places, not to make these our places of celebration or celebration. That is why in National Parks and Reserves we must take the utmost care, respect and responsibility with our actions, since these territories, delicate and untamed, demand appropriate behaviours from us when visiting.