Pucallpa City (Quechua voice = red earth) is the capital of Coronel Portillo province and the capital of Ucayali department, is located in the lowland area of the Amazon rainforest, on left shore of Ucayali River, one of the more important communication route at eastern area of Peru.
Pucallpa has had an important economic development for its lumber industry, trade and the exploration and production of petroleum and gas in the area, the port of Pucallpa is the 2nd most important on the Peruvian Amazon as it allows the commerce and transportation of goods and passengers from Iquitos and then continue to the city of Lima by Federico Basadre highway.
This area was colonized by Franciscan missionaries around 1840 to incorporate the native communities of ethnic Shipibo - Conibo and suffered the brunt of the rubber boom.
In its territory are preserved many areas of virgin forest with a rich Amazonian flora and fauna, and is sparsely populated by native communities, normally located to the shores of rivers or lagoons. Normally matriarchal organizations engaged in fishing, hunting and agriculture. Communities near the city of Pucallpa also involved in the production of handicrafts and shamanism.
Very near to Pucallpa, tourists can get nature encounter in Yarinacocha, a large lagoon formed by an old meander of the Ucayali River, and around which are located several Shipibo villages like San Francisco, and abundant flora and fauna of an Amazonian lake, ideal for bird watching, fishing, water sports and relaxation.
Pucallpa is an ideal place for those who want to navigate the Amazon basin starting their journey on the Ucayali River, then connect to the Amazon River to Iquitos or continue in the territory of Brazil to reach the Atlantic Ocean.
Pucallpa Tourist Guide
This area was colonized by Franciscan missionaries around 1840 to incorporate the native communities of ethnic Shipibo - Conibo, then its importance increases from his second foundation attributed to October 1888 with the name of New Oran and from 1950 began its development as a colonist population after the construction of the Federico Basadre road that joins with the cities of Tingo María and Huánuco and then connect with Lima city. At the moment it is the city of greater growth of population of the Peruvian Amazon and there are modern buildings in town. Tourism in Pucallpa is associated with ecotourism, to empathize with their nature and biodiversity, and contact with native communities. Just 4 Km from the city is the Natural Park of Pucallpa and Regional Museum which has a small zoo of wildlife. To 7 Km from the city find Yarinacocha, one of the largest lagoons of the Amazon, its banks have settled ethnic groups Shipibo - Conibo. The place is ideal for fun and relaxation and has good restaurants and lodges where you can do different sports such as skiing, kayaking and fishing and observing wildlife. The area is also inhabited by ethnic descendants of the Pano, hospitable people offering their crafts. The city has a good basic hotel infrastructure and resort on the outskirts of the city, tour operators who organize tours around the city, in the downtown are craft markets and local craft shops, shopping area, banks and ATMs.
On the way Federico Basadre highway between Tingo Maria and Pucallpa is located extraordinarily beautiful areas like the Boquerón del Padre Abad (183 Km from Pucallpa) a narrow canyon with impressive waterfalls, and close to this point are located the waterfalls El Velo de la Novia (Bride's Veil), and La Ducha del Diablo (Devil's Shower). Near to Masiea district is located the Imiria Regional Conservation Area (135,000 hectares) for protected its rich biodiversity. In the Ucayali department also there are protected natural areas as Alto Purus National Park, Cordillera Azul National Park and El Sira and Purus Communal Reserves.
The Pucallpa area and surrounding is inhabited by ancient native communities of ethnic Shipibo - Conibo that belong to the Pano linguistic family that lived in the central Amazon. Also there are native communities Campas, Cashibos and Piros. The natives began to have contact with occidental people since the sixteenth century by evangelical missionaries and colonist were later contacted by following the rubber boom. Currently living in small villages along the Ucayali River and its tributaries, matriarchal organization dedicated to agriculture, fishing and hunting. Near to Pucallpa and Yarinacocha are located the native communities of Santa Clara and San Francisco, where you can appreciate the craftsmanship, emphasizing its ceramics and textiles. Some natives offer accommodation in their homes and the option to participate in its activities through rural tourism or shamanism sessions.
Exploring the Jungle
The department of Ucayali and considering Pucallpa as a starting point, offers good alternatives to explore the Amazon jungle. Many tourists who want the experience to navigate its rivers begin their journey from the port of Pucallpa on the Ucayali river and can reach Iquitos by the Amazon River, from Iquitos and if you can continue to ports in Brazil to its mouth and delta in the Atlantic Ocean. Another alternative is to explore the jungle and stay in a lodge and participate in its activities for the knowledge and contact with nature. This area offers good alternatives to bird watching.
How to arrive to Pucallpa
The fastest way is by air and regular daily flights from the city of Lima and Iquitos. In Pucallpa can take flights in small planes to smaller towns and villages in the area. By land, by Federico Basadre highway (5N) linking Pucallpa to Tingo María - Huánuco - La Oroya - Lima. By river connects with all towns in the Ucayali - Amazon basin to Iquitos.