5 Day Iquitos Itinerary: Exploring the Peruvian Amazon on a Jungle Tour from Iquitos (2024)

By Lucas Vega

5 Day Iquitos Itinerary: Exploring the Peruvian Amazon on a Jungle Tour from Iquitos (2024)

By Lucas Vega

Explore the captivating allure of the Peruvian Amazon with our curated 5 day Iquitos itinerary. Serving as the gateway to Northern Peru’s extraordinary rainforest, Iquitos beckons you to embark on an odyssey that seamlessly blends city exploration with the untamed wonders of the jungle. In this article, we’ll guide you through a journey of rich biodiversity, cultural encounters, and unparalleled natural beauty that comes with visiting the Amazon from Iquitos.

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Why Visit the Amazon from Iquitos?

Iquitos stands as the ideal starting point for an adventure through the Amazon in Northern Peru. As the gateway city, Iquitos bridges the gap between urban charm and the pristine rainforest, offering a unique fusion of experiences. Follow our 5 day Iquitos itinerary below for the perfect jungle adventure.

Your Portal to Remote Amazonian Splendor

While the Amazon Rainforest spans across multiple countries, the northern region of Peru, accessible through Iquitos, offers a uniquely remote and untamed encounter with the jungle. Unlike some other parts of the Amazon, Northern Peru’s rainforest retains a pristine and less-trodden quality, ensuring a more authentic and undisturbed experience.

The Essence of Jungle Immersion

Iquitos serves as the ideal base for those seeking an authentic jungle immersion. The region’s remoteness means less human interference, allowing visitors to connect with the jungle in its purest form. The sounds of the rainforest, the lush vegetation, and the untouched landscapes create an atmosphere that epitomizes the essence of the Amazon.

Unparalleled Wildlife Encounters

For wildlife enthusiasts, the Amazon in Northern Peru is a haven. The remote nature of this region allows for a more intact and flourishing ecosystem, providing a habitat for a diverse array of species. From elusive big cats to vibrant birdlife, the Amazon near Iquitos promises wildlife encounters that are both rare and remarkable.

5 Day Iquitos Itinerary - Visiting the Amazon in Peru

Is Our 5 Day Iquitos Itinerary Enough?

The question lingers – how many days does one need to truly absorb the essence of Iquitos and the Amazon? Though you can squeeze your trip into a shorter time frame, our 5 day Iquitos itinerary is meticulously planned to show you the best of the jungle. Join us as we delve into each day’s activities, ensuring you make the most of your limited time in this enchanting region.

Getting to Iquitos

Your Amazonian adventure begins with a swift and straightforward flight from Lima to Iquitos. Board a morning flight from Lima, and within a few hours, you’ll find yourself stepping into a world where the urban landscape gives way to the untamed beauty of the Amazon rainforest. A short transfer from the airport takes you to the heart of Iquitos, where the city’s vibrant energy and Amazonian spirit become palpable.

Getting to the Amazon

While Iquitos is the starting point, it’s essential to recognise its role as the gateway to the Amazon. You should only spend one night in Iquitos before you embark on your jungle tour, as you will want to maximise time spent in the jungle. It is also advisable to spend a night in Iquitos after your jungle expedition, then fly out the next day. This is the structure we’ve used in our 5 day Iquitos itinerary below.

Best Time to Visit for Our 5 Day Iquitos Itinerary

Selecting the ideal time to explore Iquitos and the Peruvian Amazon is crucial for an optimal experience, offering different charms depending on the season.

  • Dry Season (May – October): The dry season, spanning from May to October, presents lower river levels, making wildlife spotting more accessible and offering comfortable trekking conditions. This period is particularly advantageous for birdwatching, as many species gather around shrinking water sources.
  • Wet Season (November – April): On the other hand, the wet season, from November to April, transforms the landscape into a lush and vibrant haven. While rain showers are common, the heightened water levels open up new channels for exploration, making it an excellent time for boat excursions through the flooded forest.

Consider personal preferences and desired activities when planning your visit, ensuring an immersive and tailored Amazonian adventure.

Our 5 Day Iquitos Itinerary

We’ve outlined the perfect 5 day Iquitos itinerary below. Notably, you will only need to plan your first day in Iquitos and book your jungle tour! The remaining days in the jungle will be coordinated by your chosen tour company.

In Iquitos, your Amazonian adventure centers around your chosen jungle lodge. The lodge you book will typically include transport to and from Iquitos, activities, and all meals. This makes your journey fun, seamless, and convenient. Here are some of our favourites:

Day 1: Arrival in Iquitos and City Exploration


  • Flight from Lima to Iquitos: Board a morning flight from Lima, leaving the urban hustle behind and soaring into the heart of the Amazon. As you descend into Iquitos, witness the landscape transform from cityscapes to the sprawling green canopy of the rainforest.
  • Arrive in Iquitos: Touch down in Iquitos, a city uniquely situated amidst the vast Amazon rainforest. Feel the tropical air and embrace the distinct energy of a city accessible only by air or water.
  • Transfer to Accommodation: It is a short transfer from the airport to town, where you should check in at your accommodation. There are any number of comfortable budget hostels in Iquitos. Check-in and take a moment to absorb the Amazonian atmosphere settling around you.


  • Lunch in a Local Restaurant: Delight in the rich flavors of Amazonian cuisine at a local restaurant, savoring the unique blend of indigenous ingredients.
  • Visit Belen Market and Floating Village: Dive into the heart of Iquitos’ culture by exploring the vibrant Belen Market. Witness the bustling activity as locals trade fresh produce, crafts, and daily essentials. Extend your experience with a visit to the Floating Village, where the Amazon River intertwines with the daily lives of its residents.
  • Visit Nanay Market: Immerse yourself in the local produce and crafts at Nanay Market, where the vibrant colors and aromas of Amazonian goods offer a sensory journey.


  • Stroll at Plaza de Armas: Head to Plaza de Armas, the main square of Iquitos. Absorb the historical and cultural significance of this central hub, surrounded by colonial architecture.
  • Scenic Views at Malecón Tarapacá:
  • Enjoy a leisurely stroll along Malecón Tarapacá, a scenic waterfront promenade. Absorb the tranquility of the Amazon River as the sun begins to set, casting its warm hues over the horizon.
  • Dinner at a Local Restaurant: Conclude your day with a delectable dinner at a local restaurant, indulging in Amazonian specialties. Let the first day in Iquitos set the stage for the adventures that lie ahead.

Day 2: Amazon Jungle Adventure


  • Departure for the Amazon Jungle: Bid farewell to Iquitos as you embark on a thrilling journey into the heart of the Amazon. Your adventure begins with a boat transfer along the mighty Amazon River, immersing you in the vastness of the rainforest. The duration of your transfer depends on your chosen jungle lodge, ensuring a scenic introduction to the dense wilderness.
  • Boat Transfer Along the Amazon River: As you glide through the water, absorb the sights and sounds of the jungle awakening to a new day. This river journey is more than a means of transportation; it’s a gateway to the unparalleled biodiversity that defines the Amazon.


  • Lunch: Upon reaching your jungle lodge, enjoy a hearty lunch that introduces you to the flavors of the Amazon. Delight in the culinary creations crafted from locally sourced ingredients.
  • Jungle Walk and Wildlife Observation: Immerse yourself in the enchanting surroundings with a jungle walk. Led by knowledgeable guides, explore the diverse flora and fauna, gaining insights into the intricate ecosystems that sustain life in the Amazon.
  • Canoe Trip to Explore Smaller Water Channels: Embark on a serene canoe trip, navigating smaller water channels that lead you deeper into the heart of the rainforest. This intimate exploration allows for a closer encounter with the hidden wonders of the jungle.
  • Optional Swimming with Amazonian Pink River Dolphins: For those seeking a unique experience, take the opportunity for an optional swim with the renowned Amazonian pink river dolphins. This encounter provides a rare chance to share the water with these playful and gentle creatures.


  • Dinner: As the day transitions to evening, relish a delectable dinner at the lodge. The evening atmosphere in the Amazon is filled with the symphony of nocturnal creatures, setting the stage for further exploration.
  • Night Jungle Walk: Venture into the mysterious realm of the Amazon after dark with a night jungle walk. Equipped with flashlights, discover the creatures that come to life under the moonlit canopy. Your guides will unravel the secrets of the nocturnal world, creating an immersive and unforgettable experience.

Day 3: Amazon Jungle Adventure


  • Morning River Cruise for Bird Watching: Awaken with the jungle as you embark on a serene morning river cruise. Glide through the waterways, observing the rainforest’s avian wonders. The Amazon is a haven for birdwatchers, offering glimpses of vibrant species against the lush backdrop.
  • Guided Visit to Monkey Island: Immerse yourself in the lively world of primates with a guided visit to Monkey Island. Interact with various primate species, observing their natural behaviors and learning about their importance in the delicate balance of the ecosystem.


  • Lunch: Refuel with a delightful lunch at the lodge, savoring the fusion of Amazonian flavors prepared by skilled local chefs.
  • Visit a Local Amazonian Village: Deepen your connection with the Amazonian culture by visiting a local village. Engage with indigenous communities, gaining insight into their traditional lifestyle, customs, and rituals. This cultural encounter offers a firsthand understanding of the symbiotic relationship between the rainforest and its inhabitants.
  • Optional Fishing for Piranhas: For those seeking a touch of adventure, try your hand at fishing for piranhas in nearby waters. A thrilling experience that showcases the diversity of Amazonian aquatic life.


  • Evening Nocturnal Jungle Hike: As the sun sets, embark on an evening nocturnal jungle hike. The rainforest transforms under the cover of darkness, revealing creatures with unique adaptations to the night. Your guides will lead you through this mystical realm, enhancing your understanding of the jungle’s intricate nocturnal ecosystem.
  • Dinner: Conclude the day with a delightful dinner at the lodge, surrounded by the sounds of the jungle at night. The evening is punctuated by the rhythmic symphony of insects and the occasional calls of nocturnal animals.
  • Stargazing Activity: Weather permitting, indulge in a stargazing activity. The absence of urban lights allows for a clear view of the celestial wonders above, adding a celestial dimension to your Amazonian experience.

Day 4: Amazon Jungle Adventure


  • Guided Hike to Explore Diverse Flora and Fauna: Embark on a guided hike, delving deeper into the heart of the rainforest. Traverse lush trails, discovering the myriad plant and animal species that call the Amazon home. Your guides will share their expertise, providing insights into the intricate relationships within this diverse ecosystem.
  • Optional Visit to a Local Animal Rescue Center: For those interested in conservation efforts, an optional visit to a local animal rescue center is available. Learn about the initiatives aimed at protecting and rehabilitating Amazonian wildlife.


  • Lunch: Enjoy a delicious lunch at the lodge, surrounded by the sights and sounds of the jungle.
  • Sunset River Cruise: Experience the enchanting ambiance of the Amazon during a sunset river cruise. Witness the rainforest bathed in the warm hues of twilight, creating a magical atmosphere along the waterways.


  • Optional Night-time Cultural Activity: Immerse yourself in the rich cultural tapestry of the Amazon with an optional night-time activity. Engage in traditional rituals, stories, or performances that offer a glimpse into the vibrant heritage of the indigenous communities.
  • Dinner: Delight in a sumptuous dinner at the lodge, relishing the flavors of the Amazon as the night unfolds around you.

Day 5: Return to Iquitos and Farewell Evening


  • Sunrise Boating Expedition: Begin your final day with a mesmerizing sunrise boating expedition. Glide along the tranquil waterways, witnessing the jungle come alive with the first light of day. The sunrise in the Amazon is a breathtaking spectacle, casting a golden glow over the treetops and reflecting on the water’s surface.
  • Breakfast: Enjoy a leisurely breakfast, savoring the final moments in the heart of the rainforest.


  • Leisure Time or Optional Activities: The afternoon offers flexibility for leisure or participation in optional activities. Whether you choose to relax at the lodge or engage in additional jungle experiences, this time is yours to tailor your Amazonian adventure.
  • Farewell Lunch: Gather for a farewell lunch, reminiscing about the incredible journey.
  • Begin the Journey Back to Iquitos City: In the afternoon, commence your return journey to Iquitos City. As you navigate the waterways, take in the sights and sounds of the Amazon one last time.


  • Check-in at a Local Accommodation in Iquitos: Arrive in Iquitos City and check-in at a local accommodation. Reflect on the transformative days spent in the heart of the rainforest.


That’s our 5 day Iquitos itinerary, laying out an immersive jungle experience In the heart of the Peruvian Amazon. Embarking on this Amazonian adventure provides a rare opportunity to delve into the remote and pristine rainforest, offering better wildlife encounters and an unparalleled connection with nature. From the bustling markets and vibrant plazas of Iquitos to the tranquil waterways and dense foliage of the Amazon, each day presents a tapestry of experiences. Whether navigating the Amazon River, encountering diverse wildlife, or engaging with indigenous communities, the journey fosters a deep appreciation for the intricate ecosystems that make the Amazon a global treasure. Safe travels!


What is the best time to visit Iquitos Peru?

The Amazon is a year-round destination. However, the dry season (May to October) offers better wildlife visibility.

How many days do I need in Iquitos?

For an immersive experience, plan for at least 3 to 5 days in Iquitos to explore the city’s unique culture and embark on an enriching Amazonian adventure.

Is it safe to walk around Iquitos?

While Iquitos is generally safe, it’s advisable to stay vigilant, especially in crowded areas. Stick to well-lit streets and avoid displaying valuables openly.

Can you swim in Iquitos?

While swimming in the city may not be recommended due to river conditions, jungle lodges and guided excursions offer safe opportunities to swim in designated areas, including encounters with Amazonian pink river dolphins.

Is Iquitos city worth visiting?

Absolutely! Iquitos offers a distinctive blend of urban charm and jungle adventure, making it a must-visit destination for those seeking a gateway to the Amazon.

Is malaria common in Iquitos?

While malaria exists in the region, its prevalence has significantly decreased. It’s advisable to take anti-malarial precautions and consult with a healthcare professional before travelling.

How do you get around Iquitos?

Transport options in Iquitos include mototaxis, boats, and walking. Mototaxis are a popular choice for short distances, while boats navigate the extensive waterways.

What animals are in Iquitos Peru?

The diverse wildlife in Iquitos includes macaws, sloths, caimans, and various monkey species. Jungle excursions provide opportunities to encounter these fascinating creatures.

Where is the best place to see the Amazon in Peru?

Iquitos serves as an ideal launchpad to explore the Amazon in Peru, offering a range of jungle tours, river cruises, and wildlife encounters. Follow our 5 day Iquitos itinerary for the perfect journey.

How to visit the Amazon from Iquitos in Peru?

Embark on guided jungle tours and river cruises from Iquitos to delve into the heart of the Amazon, encountering diverse flora and fauna while enjoying the expertise of knowledgeable guides.

Photo of author
Written By Lucas Vega

Lucas is a travel writer with deep experience exploring South America. He enjoys hiking through mountain ranges, cycling across deserts and paddling down rivers.

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