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Iquitos Travel Guide
Iquitos Travel Guide
Iquitos on the Amazon
River is the most inland navigable port by
Atlantic Ocean-going ships; it is also an
important fluvial port in Peru'
Loreto Region and
the gateway to the Amazon rainforest, the
world's largest and mega diverse tropical
Location: Country Peru. North of Lima
city, 347 feet above sea level
Distance: 627 miles from Lima (by plane). 615
miles from Pucallpa (by river).
Climate: Tropical and humid with a minimum
temperature of 62°F and a maximum of 100°F.
Frequent and heavy rains during the months of
December to March.
Iquitos, the Capital of the
Loreto and the most important city in the heart
of the Peruvian Amazon, was founded by Catholic
Jesuit Priests in 1754. In the past, this area
was home to diverse ethnic groups that survived
through hunting and fishing (Iquitos, Cocamas,
Boras, Ticunas and Orejones).
In 1542, Francisco de Orellana and a group of
Spanish expeditionaries sailed on the Amazon for
the first time and made contact with native
people that inhabited these lands at the time.
By mid 19th Century the little village with less
than one hundred inhabitants, most of them
indigenous and a few foreign missionaries,
outstandingly turn into a cosmopolitan
metropolis. Its history can be interpreted today
through the architecture of its old mansions
that show the European influence the city had
during the first decades of the 20-Century in
the time period known as "The Rubber Boom".
There are still standing some important
architectural reminders of these days, like the
"Iron House" designed by Gustave Eiffel and old
mansions faced with glazed tiles brought from
Nowadays Iquitos is a noisy, festive city with a
population of over 400 000 people, nevertheless
keeping its "little town" image where all
foreigners are welcome. Feasts, dancing and
parades are common everyday. The Belen Floating
Market is Iquitos soul, where one can find
almost anything. There are entire streets where
bananas, medicinal plants, good-charm potions,
dry fish, game meat and colorful vegetables and
fruits are sold.
Traveling from Lima to Iquitos by plane, the
geography change is simply impressive. In the
hour-and-a-half trip one can see pass the
coastal desert around Lima, the high snow peaks
of the Andean white and black mountain ranges,
the vast Amazon jungle and its countless winding
Ecological Tourism: The Amazon forest is the
natural reserve of more extensive and more
variety life of the Earth. Abundant botanical
and zoological species, in lustful landscapes in
those in which you can go and be lodge for some
time, or in the Parks and Natural Reservations.
Or if you prefer a cruise by the Amazon River,
or a simple ride in a boat.
National Reserve and Allpahuayo Mishana
Reserve are recommendable to visit.
The city: The city has as axis of its social
and economic life in the Main Square, and around
it, famous houses of the era of the rubber as
Iron House. The Main Square is very near the
riverside called Tarapacá, its commercial center
in the Próspero Street, and the traditional
neighborhood of Belén with its floating houses
on the river.
Municipal Museum: Located in the Távara
Street block 2, small and modest museum with
handmade works of the natives, ethnographic and
with regional fauna.
Surrounding areas of the city: You will be
able to visit the tourist complex of "Quistococha
Zoo" for a first encounter with the regional
fauna and flora, San Juan Handicrafts Market and
Santo Tomas a picturesque neighborhood.
Amazon River and Iquitos Port
arrive to Iquitos:
By air: Regular flights to Iquitos from Lima
(1 hour and 30 minutes), Tarapoto (50 minutes)
and Pucallpa (1 hour). Sporadic flights to
Iquitos from Yurimaguas (40 minutes) and
Leticia, Colombia (1 hour).
By river: It is possible to travel from
Pucallpa (Puerto La Hoyada, 2,5 km / 1,5 miles
from the city) to Iquitos by boat via the
Ucayali River with stops at Requena and
Contamana in a chartered boat, small but fast,
built for 10 to 15 people, hired as a private
service. The trip lasts 1 to 2 days, depending
on the level of the river. If you elect to
travel by "motonave", a larger boat with room
for 250 people, the trip then takes longer, 4 to
5 days, depending on the river current.
By land: There is no overland access to