The Pacaya Samiria National Reserve
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The first thing you need to know about the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve in Peru is that it’s big. And yes we mean seriously big. With over 8,000 square miles (20,719 km2) it is one of the bigger national reserves on our planet.
The second thing you need to know about the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve is that it contains some of the richest and most beautiful biodiversity on the planet. As a part of the Amazon rainforest, it is home to at least 525 bird species, over 99 mammal species, 66 species of reptiles, 56 species of amphibians and 267 species of fish.
The reserve is located in northeast Peru, where the Ucayali and Marañó rivers come together to form the Amazon River. About 23,000 indigenous people live within the boundaries of Pacaya-Samiria, comprising more than 90 communities. Most of the reserve’s inhabitants make their living by fishing or farming, though today many are involved in conservation projects.
There are several endangered species in the area, such as the charapa turtle, spider monkey, the giant river otter and red macaw.
That's why tourism within Pacaya-Samiria is highly regulated, and in order to visit, you must be in the company of a guide or travel operator who is registered with the Peruvian government. It sounds more exciting than it really is since there are plenty of those to chose from.
Within the reserve and the surrounding areas there are various lodgings that offer everything from basic amenities to exclusive services. One of the best in the area is called the Pacaya Samiria Amazon Lodge, which is located in the middle of the jungle just 500 meters from the national reserve.
This place has amazing guides and workers who offer many excursions.
A visit to the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve is not easily forgotten. There simply are not many other places in the world where nature remains virtually untouched, and blooms so bountifully.
Best time to visit
The Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve has fairly even temperatures throughout the year. The average maximum temperature lies around 32.0°C (89.6°F). The average minimum temperature (usually the minimum temperature is noted during the night) in is often around 22.0°C (71.6°F). From June til September is the dry season. Click here for more climate information.