Travel to Iquitos: An Amazon Adventure

Located in the northern part of Peru in the jungle city of Iquitos. Also known locally as the Capital of the Amazon. Iquitos is an assault on the senses that will overwhelm you with the vaporous confluence of colors and noise. The only way to get to beautiful Iquitos is by plane or boat. It is inaccessible by land, making it even more magical. You will notice that its roads are full of motorized rickshaws that run through the city to take locals and tourists to their final destination. So much is the charm of this city, that together with the experts of Cusco Peru Travel we have prepared a small article about how to travel to Iquitos. Get to know everything about this mystical city with us.

The most important aspects of how to travel to Iquitos.


travel to iquitos city location

The city is located on the Itaya River which is part of the tributary of the Amazon River. Among the many Amazon facts to know, Iquitos was an important destination in the export of rubber. Iquitos is only a part of what it was in the past. At the end of the 19th century, the city was home to the great rubber trade that was exported to America and Europe. The beautiful Spanish-style mansions of wealthy rubber barons on display today are neglected and some are even nothing more than rubble. Fortunately, some have been restored as luxurious hotels. If you plan to travel to Iquitos, make sure you visit its beautiful mansions. The banks of the Itaya River are still littered with the remains of Jesuit churches, a reminder of the city’s colorful past. The local population is said to have been enslaved and forced to work for low wages as the baron got rich off the work of the people.


travel to iquitos peru amazon jungle
The city itself is surrounded on one side by the river, while on the other side by the dense Peruvian Amazon rainforest. This makes access almost impossible. If you want to travel to Iquitos, you have to fly or take the ferry like the local people, which is very busy and not very pleasant in the humid weather. In the morning, the city wakes up around 4 a.m. and doesn’t seem to stop until around midnight. On the river, there is a constant stream of banana boats full of green fruit and fishing boats, all with their baskets full of freshly caught fish.


travel to iquitos by air

The city of Iquitos has a busy and small international airport. This airport is called “Coronel FAP Francisco Secada“. It has comfortable facilities and is located just about seven kilometers from the city center. There are regular flights to Iquitos from Lima and they usually last approximately one hour and thirty minutes. From Tarapoto, there are also flights of 50 minutes and from Pucallpa of just one hour. We consider that to travel to Iquitos, the flight is the most comfortable and fastest option. It will save a lot of time.


travel to iquitos by river

In the region, you can find a peculiar boat called “peque-peque” which is a motorized canoe. There is also a boat known as “pecamari” which is a medium-sized boat with a roof. If not, there is the option of gliders with powerful engines overboard and other medium boats. The boats are dedicated to transporting people and also transporting cargo. The trip from Pucallpa to Iquitos can take from 4 to 7 days depending on the season. The option of a boat trip can be quite an adventure, especially if you are young. But if you are traveling with your family, it can become a bit tedious, especially due to the humid and heavy weather. If you are going to travel by river, try to take advantage of ecotourism in Peru and make your experience much more unique and in connection with nature.


travel to iquitos things to see

While visiting the city, you should take the time to explore the witch market. The atmosphere enchants both tourists and locals and has a wide variety of food, crafts, and products. The streets surrounding the market are full of people selling all kinds of fish, spices, rare potions, and street food, which is not always the best idea to eat. Most people travel to Iquitos on the luxurious Amazon cruises that depart from the port of Iquitos. There are many companies to choose from and the experience will be one of the memories that will last a lifetime. After knowing Iquitos, you can opt for a charming jungle trek to Machu Picchu. In this way, you will have a complete experience of Peru and its landscapes.


travel to iquitos peru amazon aqua expeditions
One of the companies you must try is Aqua Expeditions. This luxury company has several expedition cruises that cross the Amazon River for 7 nights. One of their most popular cruises is the Aria Amazon. In this, you can experience the most luxurious and complete trip of the Amazon. The cruise travels between the two powerful tributaries of the Amazon River: El Marañón and the Ucayali, as well as several other hidden black-water lakes. If you are looking to travel to Iquitos, you have to experience their luxury cruises. It is one of the best things to do in the Peruvian Amazon.


travel to iquitos peru amazon delfin cruise
Another company to explore is the Delfin fleet of boats. All their cruises have all the luxury you will need. Explore Amazon from the comfort of your exclusive suite. All ships have restaurants with renowned chef-prepared meals and relaxing details for cocktails. Most of the cabin has ceiling to floor windows to enjoy the view along the mighty Amazon River. You will be able to travel to the Ucayali River, the largest tributary of the Amazon, as well as other neighboring streams, each rich in cultural experiences. And if this is not enough, you will be able to see some wildlife in Peru and thriving rainforests. You can fish for piranhas, explore the dense jungle on foot in search of three-toed sloths, toucans, and macaws. Then you can return to the comfort of the beautiful boats while watching endangered pink dolphins, unique in the Amazon, playing. As the cruise travels to the junction of the Ucayali and Marañón rivers, considered the birthplace of the Amazon, you will learn from experienced English-speaking naturalist guides. These will be happy to explain to you about the various cultural experiences in the Amazon, wildlife, and birds while enjoying the panoramic views from onboard.


travel to iquitos activities to enjoy on cruises
Cruises aren’t just for enjoying the pristine scenery. You can also kayak, canoe, and swim in the pristine black waters. All this without losing sight of the legendary pink dolphins of the Amazon. You can also witness one of the great spectacles of the southern hemisphere, the birth of the Amazon River. Take a short jungle walk in the flooded San José forest and see the unforgettable giant water lilies. Enjoy a picnic breakfast accompanied by a symphony of the jungle and also fish along the black waters of the Pacaya River.


If you are looking for luxury on a budget in Peru and Iquitos, there are hostels in the area to enjoy. One of the best options is the Heliconia Amazon River Lodge. Named for the beautiful tropical flower: Heliconia, it is one of the most exclusive lodges in the Peruvian Amazon. It is surrounded by tropical rainforest, islands, and lagoons full of wildlife. This is a beautiful place to rest and do many activities such as bird watching, pink dolphin watching, jungle walks, and much more. The number of tours in Iquitos are innumerable, and there are many other options to enjoy.


We hope together with the experts from Cusco Peru Travel to have helped you. To travel to Iquitos there are not too many options available, but once there you will have a whole new world of sensations. If you want to know more about our tours through the jungle, you can consult with our qualified advisors.

Peru has many wonders waiting for you to be discovered. Here in Cusco Peru Travel, our speciality is to make your trip an outstanding experience, fill-in this form and let your tailor-made luxury Peru vacation begin.

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