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MOST VISITED Peru National Parks

Here are the new figures for the most visited national parks in Peru for the calendar year 2022. We already have the updated list of the most popular and renowned parks of last year.

In this article, we want to familiarize you with the most visited national parks in Peru (or the most popular national parks).

While you may not agree with this list, keep in mind that this list is based entirely on traffic to the national parks as reported by the (SERNAP)

National Service of Natural Areas Protected by the State in 2022.

amazon rainforest

Top 5 Most Popular Peru National Parks

Embark and discover the breathtaking beauty of Peru’s incredible natural wonders by visiting these 5 most popular national parks. From impressive mountain ranges to dense jungles, these national parks have a charm and offer something for every nature lover.

Peru is a magical country famous for its rich history, cultural diversity, and breathtaking landscapes. The country has several national parks that are home to some of the most spectacular and unique landscapes in South America. These parks offer visitors the opportunity to explore Peru’s incredible natural wonders, from towering peaks to lush rainforests.

Manu National Park

Location: It is located in the basin of the Manu River, in the regions of Cusco and Madre de Dios. It is considered a protected natural area and is home to a great diversity of flora and fauna recognized worldwide.

Visitation: 5000 thousand visitors (2022 )

2022 Numbers:  5000 thousand (#1)

Park Description

One of Peru’s finest national parks is also its most popular, with more annual visits than any other national park.

Considered by many to be the crown jewel of Peru’s parks, Manu National Park protects a vast wealth of flora and fauna.

These places of immense forests and streams have a character that invites you to stop and imagine a world in which much of Peru was like this.

Herds of giant otters and many other animals roam freely in the park and it is common to see monkeys, toucans, parrots, the cock of the rock, crocodiles, and many more.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit is between April and November, during the dry season. The heavy rainy season is from February to March, when road access becomes more difficult and when trails in the forest can flood. be sure to book accommodations and some tours you can take.

Best Things to Do

  1. walking and nightlife

Definitely not an experience for the faint-hearted, an exciting night walk to spot nocturnal animals that are not active during the day will be a unique adventure. An insect and amphibian show will be the only way to see them.

2. Visit Lake Salvador

Definitely deep in the reserve and far from civilization, Lake Salvador is home to a large number of wildlife including animals and birds, and a tour of the lake will give you a chance to spot some of the more elusive animals such as monkeys, caimans, capybaras, and river turtles.

3. Visit Lake Otorongo

For birdwatching enthusiasts, Lake Otongo is the

Lake Otongo is the perfect place with an abundance of wildlife.

4. See giant otters

One of the most important players in the area is definitely the giant otter, which can reach 1.8 m in length. They live in the lakes of the area and you will have the opportunity to see them hunt, eat and play in their natural habitat.

5. See the cock-of-the-rock bird

The cock of the rock is the national bird of Peru and is easily recognized by its beautiful red and black plumage. You will have the chance to see it in the cloud forest of Manu with a peculiar dance in an attempt to attract a mate.

6. See macaws at clay licks

One of the reasons to visit the Manu National Park is one of the macaw salt licks, where hundreds of birds congregate to obtain the salt and minerals needed to balance their diet, a definitely spectacular experience for ornithologists

7. Visit the petroglyphs of Pusharo

Travel to Palotoa-Teparo, a fully indigenous Matsiguenka community and stay at Pusharo Lodge. Here you can make good nature walks, but the main attraction is the Pusharo petroglyphs, mysterious ancient rock engravings located near the settlement. The local community organizes visits, but a permit must be obtained in Cusco in advance.

8. Do a canopy walk

A different kind of rainforest viewing experience is a canopy walk in the rainforests with above ground views and a unique treetop experience.

You will definitely have a deeper understanding of life in the trees. 

9. Camp in the jungle

To fully experience the jungle, try camping surrounded only by darkness and the endless sounds of the night.

10. Visit local communities

One of the most important activities in the Cultural Zone is tourism, so the communities have facilities to receive tourists and learn about the traditions of the Yine and Matsiguengua communities.

11. Take a river tour

A great way to learn more about the history of Manu National Park is to take a river tour and see the park in all its magnitude and discover animals with a professional guide.

 12. Go whitewater rafting

For the adventure lovers in Manu are the grade I and II rapids near the village of Pilcopata where you will get your adrenaline pumping with the lush jungle as a backdrop.

Where to Stay

Relevant Links

Manu national park 3 days

Manu national park 4 days

Huascaran National Park

Location: It is located in the department of Ancash, in the provinces of Huaylas, Yungay, Carhuaz, Huaraz, Recuay, Bolognesi, Pomabamba, Huari, Mariscal Luzuriaga, and Asunción, and covers an area of 340,000.00 hectares.

Visitation: Huascarán National Park received 245,071 visitors, 194,816 nationals and 50,255 foreigners in the 2022 season. (2022 )

2022 Numbers: 245,071 thousand (#2)

Park Description

Huascaran National Park is located in the central Andes of Peru and is considered the highest mountain in Peru, and also has some very cool trails and peaks, but that takes experience because it is considered one of the highest peaks in South America, rising 6,000 meters above sea level. Even at such a high altitude, the park teems with life: from vicuñas, the wild camelids, to majestic Andean condors and the elusive Andean wildcat.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Huascarán National Park is during the months of May through September. During this time there are clear skies and a lower probability of rain, which makes nature observation and outdoor activities more pleasant. It is also a good time for hiking and climbing in the mountains of the region. However, it is important to keep in mind that, due to the park’s location in the Peruvian Andes, temperatures can be extremely cold, especially during the nights and early mornings, and it is also recommended to acclimatize for at least 2 to 3 days in the nearby towns to have a more pleasant experience.

5 Best Things to do

  1. Trekking Santa Cruz

To hike the famous Santa Cruz route you must be ready physically and spiritually because nothing prepares you for that kind of beauty! It is a three to four-day hike visiting lakes, lagoons, and mountains at almost 5000 meters above sea level. If you are looking for adventure and connection with nature, this is a great option!

But it is important to remember to do this trail is to be in good physical shape to be able to withstand long routines of hiking at a fairly steep altitude, for it will be crucial to adapt to the altitude before his trail and you can be a couple of days in Huaraz or also make the famous lake of 69, another very important aspect is to have adequate hiking equipment such as trekking shoes, tents, sleeping bags, backpack trailers, purifying tablets with all this equipment mentioned will have an unforgettable experience.

The tour begins in Cashapampa, where you will be charged between S/. 15 and S/. 60 to start the trekking, according to the Park’s regulations. It is important that you keep the ticket that you will be given during the tour, which ends in Vaquería, where you can take transportation to Yungay and from there to Huaraz. A long route, but definitely incredible and unforgettable!

The Llanganuco lagoons are located 25 km east of the city of Yungay. The Chinacocha, also known as the Female Lagoon, is at the foot of the country’s highest mountain, Huascaran, and is popular for its turquoise color and the surrounding queñual forests. While Laguna Orconcocha, or Laguna Macho, also has a striking light blue color and is located at the end of the valley. Both are considered duality as the yin and yang a complement between male and female and definitely these lagoons are for lovers of photography and nature at its best expression and Chinancocha and so see more closely the mountains around. A unique experience!

Better known as the Lagoon of the 7 colors – is a beautiful lagoon, whose waters change color according to the rotation of the sun, located on the slopes of the snowy of the same name, at 4450 meters above sea level. Its waters are icy, but, as in the previous lagoons, are crystal clear and have a variety of turquoise and green tones, which gives a very spicy and beautiful color should be taken into account to make this hike at least one day (depending on the travel agency) in all this hiking there are very cool views and this trail is one of the popular and favorite. 

The famous Pastoruri snow-capped mountain is located 70 km south of Huaraz, over 5240 meters above sea level. The visit can be made with a travel agency, cab or private car. Although it is known for being one of the snow-capped mountains most affected by climate change and for not having much snow in its geology, you can still visit the base of this snow-capped mountain, and since it is a relatively easy hike it is a good option for people who do not have much experience in hiking.

This is the closest lagoon to the city of Huari, so it is its most important tourist attraction. You can fish trout in its crystal clear waters and its extension is surrounded by endemic vegetation typical of the area: shrubs, blackberries, queñuales, alders and huagancu flower (orchid), which makes it a charming lagoon around. In this place, you can camp, as well as have a picnic area, and enjoy a coffee. Here you can also take boat tours and walk around the lagoon to take pictures and better appreciate the surrounding nature.

Where to Stay

is to camp in the surrounding areas of the lagoon, so you should have a piece of good hiking equipment.

Ballestas Islands National Reserve

Location: are a group of islands near the city of Pisco, Peru. They are composed of rocky formations where there is an important marine fauna, with guano birds such as the guanay, the piquero and the zarcillo mainly. The most important islands are Ballestas Norte, Centro, and Sur, each with an estimated surface area of 0.12 km².

.Visitation: Last year there was a visit of approximately 40 thousand people of which 35% were Peruvians and 5% were foreigners. By 2023 there is a probability that this number will increase drastically.

 2022 Numbers: 40  thousand (#3

Islands Description

The Ballestas Islands National Reserve is located off the coast of Peru, near the city of Paracas. The reserve is home to a wide variety of marine life, including sea lions, penguins, dolphins and numerous species of seabirds. Visitors can take boat tours of the islands, where they can see these animals in their natural habitat.

Best Time to Visit

The visit to the Ballestas Islands can be done at any time of the year: In the months of January to March the weather in Pisco is quite hot, so you should be well protected from the sun with sunscreen and a hat. During the months of April to December it is cooler, with average temperatures of 20-22ºC. In general, wear sun hats or go light.

Best Things to do

  1. morning boat tour to the Ballestas Islands

Embark on the beauty of the Ballestas Islands, home to many wild species such as sea lions, penguins, seals and many other endangered animals and birds, navigate these amazing islands and admire the breathtaking scenery.

Enjoy the Ballestas Islands and observe the marine life in its natural habitat before going into the desert to visit the city of Ica (famous for its vineyards) and then take a buggy excursion to the Huacachina Oasis

Start the morning with a pick-up at your hotel in Paracas or Piso and head to the Paracas Port. Here you will board a speedboat to begin your adventure to the impressive Ballestas Island. Along the way, you will make a stop at the Paracas Peninsula to see an impressive design of the enigmatic El Candelabro drawn on the hillside of the peninsula. Afterward, the speedboat will sail to the Ballestas Islands, where you will see an impressive world full of birds and sea lions. Visit up to three islands, depending on sea conditions, and explore their caves.

Return to the port for a 40-minute break before boarding a vehicle to drive approximately one hour towards the city of Ica. On this part of the tour you will visit a vineyard to have the opportunity to taste traditional wine and Pisco, Peru’s national drink. Learn about the history and production process of Pisco in one of the wineries before heading to more places of interest. Later you will visit the Cathedral of Señor de Luren, the main square and the Regional Museum of Ica, an interesting building that houses remains of ancient local cultures.

After spending some time in Ica, continue southwest towards the Huacachina Oasis, a beautiful lagoon surrounded by palm trees and huge sand dunes with a spectacular view of the valley and the desert of Ica. Here you can climb the sand dunes and enjoy a buggy excursion. After spending some time in the sand, you will return to your hotel.

Where to Stay

Most visitors tend to stay in the nearby town of Paracas. This town has a wide variety of lodging options, from luxury hotels to hostels and campsites for those looking for more economical accommodations. Some popular lodging options in Paracas include the

. In general, it is advisable to book accommodation in advance especially during periods of high demand in the area.

Paracas National Reserve

Location. The Paracas National Reserve is located on the southern coast of Peru and is home to a unique ecosystem of desert, ocean and islands.

Visitation: It brought with it the beginning of the recovery of tourist activity in the beach resort of Paracas, Ica region, with the visit of at least 30,000 tourists,

 2022 Numbers: 30  thousand (#4

Park Description

The Paracas National Reserve is located on the southern coast of Peru and is home to a unique ecosystem of desert, ocean, and islands. The reserve is famous for its stunning red sand beaches, towering cliffs and varied marine life, such as sea turtles, dolphins and humpback whales, birds such as flamingos and penguins, and fish such as toyo, sardine and anchoveta. Visitors can enjoy guided tours of the reserve and participate in activities such as sandboarding and kitesurfing. In general, if you are in Peru you should be in this unique experience.

Best Time to Visit

January to June are six ideal months to visit Paracas. Autumn is barely noticeable, with very little change in the weather, except for the temperature which can drop at night. In general, temperatures are not extreme and with proper clothing you will be fine.

Best Things to do

This is a list of what we consider the best activities in Paracas.

Where to Stay

Most visitors tend to stay in the nearby town of Paracas. This town has a wide variety of lodging options, from luxury hotels to hostels and campsites for those looking for more economical accommodations. Some popular lodging options in Paracas include the

Tambopata National Reserve

Location. Tambopata National Reserve is situated in the Amazon rainforest of southeastern Peru and is renowned for its incredible biodiversity

Visitation: It is estimated that around 300,000 domestic tourism trips were made to the Madre de Dios region, which represents 0.7% of total trips nationwide.

 2022 Numbers: 300 thousand (#5

National Reserve Description

It is home to an abundance of bird, mammal, and reptile species, including 678 bird, 169 mammal and 103 reptile species. The park also has 1,200 species of trees, which offers visitors the opportunity to explore the jungle, observe exotic fauna and learn about the local Ese’eja culture. And as of today in 2023 they are still doing studies and are sure to find more species of flora and fauna.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Tambopata is during the dry season, between May and November, when the climate fluctuates between 10 and 35 ° C.

Best Things to do

The Tambopata Reserve, located in the Peruvian Amazon, is home to a wide variety of animal and plant species. Here are some of the best activities to do during a visit:

Where to Stay

Tambopata National Reserve in Peru offers several lodging options for visitors, depending on their budget and preferences. Some options include:

Ecological lodges: If you want to experience life in the jungle and be in direct contact with nature, an ecological lodge would be the best option to stay in the Tambopata Reserve.

Hotels in Puerto Maldonado: If you prefer a more comfortable lodging option, there are several hotels located in the town of Puerto Maldonado, which is the entry and exit point of the reserve.

Campsites: If you wish to camp outdoors, the Tambopata Reserve has designated areas for camping.

Here we have some places to stay