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Located in the department of Loreto, Pacaya-Samiria covers an area of 2,080,000 hectares, and is the largest national reserve in the country.
Considered the jewel of Peru's northern Amazon jungle, Pacaya-Samiria is home to an abundant and varied wild life , mainly the myriad fish
species, the main source of protein in the region. The countless lakes, swamps and water holes are a refuge for 130 types of mammal, 330 bird species and an as-yet unknown number of reptile and amphibian species.
Some of the attractions of the area include the huge river turtles, the manatee and the pink river dolphin, the giant river otter, the black cayman and the paiche -the largest freshwater fish species on Earth- all of which are endangered species.
Hot and extremely humid, with temperatures often topping 34° C. The area has a dry season (May-October) which is an ideal time to visit, and a heavy rain season (December-March).
Access is only by river. Boats set out regularly from the city of Iquitos down the Amazon River and take 3-4 hours to get to Nauta. From there, boats go down the Marañon River to the Pacaya River through the Puinahua canal (another 4-6 hours).
There is no tourist infrastructure in the reserve. Visitors are advised to hire a local guide and spend 6-7 days at the reserve. It takes at least three days to get in and out of the area.
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