Peru – Manu national park – Day 1

It’s a long way to Peru, curtesy to AirFrance with an extra hour before take-off looking for some missing luggage – unfortunately not ours as we realized later in Lima. 12h flight in an old cramped plane, with an outdated entertainment system, sad movie selection (The Fate of the Furious was the lead movie) and sucky food. Oh how do we miss you, Emirates! We made it to Lima, reported our bag missing, crossed the road to the conveniently located hotel and took stock of our belongings. We had all the shoes, electronics and toiletries with us, but nothing more than the clothes we had on, a t-shirt and shorts for Sabine and very random, an extra pair of underwear for Dorin. With our bag only following us two full days later to the jungle, we used the first day in Cuzco for shopping and sleeping. Luckily we will spend some more time in Cuzco after our jungle trip.

Our seven days tour to Manu National Park with Manu Expeditions started from Cuzco with a full day car ride through the bare and dusty Peruvian mountains. It’s just us and a well-traveled and photo enthusiastic Italian couple, Laura and Daniel, with our excellent guide David and our cook Clever, as well as our initial driver and later our boat crew. After a stop in Paucartambo to look at the very elaborated costumes they spend all year on to prepare for their three day festival (there is one with lama fetus as a skirt?…), it was one more mountain pass and suddenly, fog was creeping up and the first few shaggy trees appeared with moss hanging, the beginning of the cloud forest. Beside the very mossy trees, we also got to see lots of birds, including colorful quetzals and bright red cocks-of-the-rock dancing and singing for female attention. Not sure why our guidebook says later are difficult to spot, we got to see plenty 🙂