The wonderfully remote and globally important Noel Kempff Mercado National Park is home to a broad spectrum of Amazonian flora and fauna and has a wide range of dwindling habitats, from open cerrado (savanna) to dense rainforest. The park lies in the northernmost reaches of Santa Cruz department, between the banks of the Ríos Verde, Guaporé (Río Iténez on Bolivian maps) and Paraguá.
It encompasses more than 1.5 million hectares of the most dramatic scenery in northern Bolivia, including rivers, rainforests, waterfalls, plateaus and rugged 500m escarpments. An attempt to generate a tourist trail to the park appears to have failed, and camps at Flor de Oro and Los Fierros have not been maintained. Loggers, ranchers and energy companies have recently shown interest in the region, but the park remains an exciting off-the-beaten-track option for adventurous travelers. Due to the lack of infrastructure, visits are best done with a Santa Cruz–based tour agency. Nick’s Adventures and Amboró Tours both run tours.