Parque Nacional Manu
Good for: volunteering, Wildlife Viewing, Amazonian Jungle, work and friendly help, entomologists
Not good for: Comfort Trips, People do not like bugs
Lonely Planet review for Parque Nacional Manu
This vast national park in the Amazon Basin covers almost 20,000 sq km (12,427 sq mi) and is one of the best places in South America to see a stunning variety of tropical wildlife. Progressive in its emphasis on preservation, Unesco declared Manu a Biosphere Reserve in 1977 and a World Natural Heritage Site in 1987.
One reason the park is so successful in preserving such a large tract of virgin jungle and its wildlife is that it's remote and relatively inaccessible to people, and therefore has not been exploited by rubber tappers, loggers, oil companies or hunters.
At Cocha Salvador, one of the park's largest and most beautiful lakes, you'll find camping and guided hiking possibilities. With patience, wildlife is seen in most areas. During a one-week trip, you can reasonably expect to see scores of different bird species, several kinds of monkey and a few other mammals. The best time to go is during the dry season (June to November); much of Manu may be inaccessible or closed during the rainiest months (January to April). It is illegal to enter the park without a guide. Going with an organized group can be arranged in Cuzco or with international tour operators.