Land of exuberant vegetation, impressive waterfalls, lush forests and hills with great cliffs; Tarapoto is a natural paradise with a large number of attractions to discover. Located in the department of San Martín, this Amazonian city is the gateway to the jungle of northeastern Peru and the starting point for dozens of outdoor excursions that await you.
The ‘City of Palms’, as it is known, is today the main tourist and commercial source of this region. Thousands of people arrive every year to enjoy the experience of a boat ride through the Blue Lagoon, tour the majestic castle of Lamas, cool off in the Ahuashiyacu waterfalls or take a spectacular walk through the Altomayo Protected Forest. As you can see, Tarapoto is a wonderful destination for lovers of nature, fun and adventure.
Located 20 minutes from Tarapoto, it is one of the most visited and famous destinations in the entire region. It is the ideal place to enjoy a refreshing bath and rest accompanied by the sound of falling water. To get there, you must take a public bus or motorcycle taxi from the city center and, after entering the reserve, walk for about 15 minutes. In the surroundings of the waterfall, you can find a viewpoint that offers a fantastic view of Tarapoto.
22 km away from the city (about 25 minutes by car, approximately), is this charming town, one of the oldest in the jungle of Peru and famous for preserving its traditions, crafts and dances. Its population is made up of very friendly people who speak a particular mixture of Quechua with various aboriginal languages.
Here, you can visit the wonderful medieval-style castle built 15 years ago on a huge hill. Inside, you will be able to appreciate impressive decorations and paintings, imposing walls made of rock and balconies with a privileged view. It was built by an Italian businessman, who, when he first arrived in this place, fell in love with its beautiful landscapes, which reminded him a lot of his native country.
On the other hand, you can also visit the Cordillera Escalera Regional Conservation Area, which brings together a great diversity of flora and fauna.
Located two and a half hours from Tarapoto, very close to the town of Rioja, it is a protected area that promotes ecotourism and environmental conservation. It covers a terrain that goes from 800 to 4000 m a.s.l. whose diversity of microclimates give rise to a wide variety of habitats for numerous species.
This place is also home to native communities that offer excursions to different parts of the area. An unmissable visit is to the caves, where you can see the cock of the rocks and the yellow-tailed woolly monkey. Another destination is the Playa de las Mariposas, where you will see an amazing spectacle full of color.
Thanks to its great natural beauty, this place is one of the most important tourist attractions in Tarapoto. It is surrounded by grasslands that are home to a great diversity of species and also dreamlike landscapes, so taking a walk on its waters is an incredible experience.
If adventure is your thing, you can also take trekking routes and get in touch with nature. Many visitors come here to spend a refreshing day in the middle of the Amazon and also enjoy the nearby tourist resorts that offer exquisite cuisine and various activities such as canopy, canoeing, artisanal fishing, and jet ski tours. Without a doubt, a great destination to spend pleasant moments with the family.
For archeology lovers, this is the ideal destination to learn more about the history of this region. It is located 8 km from Tarapoto and has a large number of figures of animals, plants and people engraved in stone. Although the date of antiquity of these symbols has not yet been determined, historians say that they could correspond to the Chachapoyas culture.
The Polish Petroglyphs have an important artistic and social value for the city of Tarapoto, as they represent the religious beliefs of the ancient settlers who settled in this region. It is an attraction that receives more and more visitors for its magic and mystery.
This region of Tarapoto is full of activities in which to enjoy a day in nature. On the one hand, here is the city of Moyobamba, famous mainly for the great variety of orchids that grow in this place and where you can take a walk through one of its greenhouses.
Following the road to the north is the source of the Tioyacu River, a beautiful place and very well conditioned to receive tourists. First, you will have to walk a small path until you reach the source of the river, where its crystal clear waters attract attention. Then it’s time to bathe: you’ll find small waterfalls and natural water pools where you’ll want to stay all day.
How to get there Alto Mayo: from Tarapoto, you can take a bus or a taxi that will take you to Moyobamba, the Tioyacu River or any of the other tourist attractions in this region. However, to make the most of your time, the best option is to hire a tour, with which you make stops at different points. At Denomades we offer the Alto Mayo tour, with visits to these and other places in the area.
Also in the Alto Mayo region is the Cueva del Diamante, ideal for those who like caving and exploring enigmatic places. Here there are stalactites and stalagmites, as well as tall natural columns that seem to be supporting the cave.
This is a space that is very different from anything you can find in Tarapoto and perfect for taking a walk among curious rock formations.
How to get to Cueva del Diamante: this cavern is located in the district of Naranjos, almost 200 kilometers northwest of Tarapoto. You can take a bus or a taxi in the city to this destination or take advantage of the visit to Alto Mayo to make a stop here.
Very close to the Ahuashiyacu waterfall is the Urku Center, the best place to get up close and get to know the wild fauna that inhabits Tarapoto. Here they take in animals to rehabilitate them and return them to their natural habitat and, meanwhile, coexist with species of all kinds.
The most entertaining thing about the place is that you can walk with funny monkeys by your side, who climb on your shoulder when you least expect it and accompany you all the way.
How to get to the Urku Center: The Urku Center is very close to the city of Tarapoto, so you can get there by motorcycle taxi or even on foot if you like to explore the destinations you visit on foot. You can also get to this place on our Tarapoto City Tour.
Many are the routes that take you to Machu Picchu, but none is like the Inca Trail Tours, the most famous pedestrian path in the Americas. After flying from the capital of Perú, Lima, you will arrive in Cusco to walk for four days along a path through forests and dense fog, millenary stone steps and discovering the ruins of ancient fortifications and Inca cities, and all the time enjoying majestic views.