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Tambopata Research Center
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Iselin, New Jersey
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Ask for the guide rating”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 24, 2013

Place is average. Nothing great. Food was good. About jungle experience, please ask them to show you the ratings of their guide. They provided us a very bad guide who had no knowledge and couldnt even show us a monkey. while going back we checked his rating and it was below average. We felt bad paying them so much as travelling is one time experience. The bathrooms are really far from the rooms. They charged us for 4 days and 3 nights food included. But on the way back thts our 4th day, they did not provide us any food since morning 6 a.m. to post noon 3 p.m. We found some place in the city and ended up having sandwiches for the whole day. Only dinner is proper, everything else is small quantities, so they save on food but charge a lot!

Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
5 Thank neil d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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499 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (110)
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English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2013

Really natural setting. A choice of activities depending on what you feel like doing. Strongly recommend the stand up paddle on the tambopata river (a tributary of the Amazon river) boarding-so serene. Great Cocktails if you want them our just chill in a hammock reading some forest biology books, or both!

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank trpo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mexico City, Mexico
Level Contributor
180 reviews
143 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 10, 2013

Don't just go to Refugio, go to TRC as well. It takes just one more day and cost a little bit extra, but you can see so much more widelife. We saw different kind of animals and we particularly enjoyed the night walk, where we saw snack, big spiders and colorful frogs. We went in the wet season, but we had been lucky with the weather. Moreover, there were not many tourists and we can enjoy the nature better. We met a group of researchers from a Texas university who go there every Dec. We went with them one morning and we had learned so much about mccaw. It's a great experience and it's really worthwhile!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lau_traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
56 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 3, 2013

We spent three nights at TRC lodge, and it was the absolute highlight of our round trip of Peru! We went to TRC as part of a 5 night and 6 days excursion into the reserve, booked through Rainforest Expeditions.

What makes a stay at TRC special, is the fact that you are staying at an active research institute. The researchers and volunteers that do their jobs there, are researching the macaw population. Each one of them was not only very knowledgeable of their field but also very involved with the project, nature and the area. Besides this, they were al extremely hospitable to us, mere tourists :) we have indeed learned so much from them, regarding wildlife and of course especially birds. We were able to see the researchers and volunteers at work in the forest, climbing trees and checking up the macaw chicks. Wonderful to see this. We spent Christmas at TRC, which was a great showcase of the staffs hospitability: we all ate together and we joined their xmas party at the bar. It felt really special, knowing that around us for four hours travel there was no human soul to be found.

About comfort: we have been very comfortable in TRC. One wall of the bedrooms is completely open, facing the jungle; thus, nobody can help the presence of insects, maybe sand, etc. But the openness has great advantage: it lets you see dusky titi monkeys swinging in the trees 5 metres away from you, or invites an opossum in (who can then keep you awake though, so hide your foods and fruits!) Beds were comfortable, had mosquitonets, and the bathroomfacilities are shared but clean and plenty, so no waiting. The only minus concerning comfort, was really the humidity and heat. It really took some getting used to, and you will be sweaty and dirty during your walks. It is hard to dry any clothes in the humid conditions, so bring a few sets of long sleeved outfits. We were not extremely bothered by mosquitos, surprisingly. 

Food was great. We both requested a vegetarian menu, and were pleasantly surprised by the versatility with which they cooked for us. It was all tasty and freshly made, and also healthy. Drinks at the bar wereoverpriced though (s15 for a beer).

Our guide for the whole six days was Manuel. He is a very knowledgable guide, who clearly knows not only the area well, but also has an extremely keen eye for spotting animals. He knows all the species by name and knows exactly where to find them ( and can sometimes do a bloody good bird imitation too). This is why we saw the following (and more, but cant remember all the names):
capybaras, hoatzins, harpy eagle, wild boars (peccary), razor-billed curasow, trumpeters, tarantula, pygmy marmosets, spider monkeys, howler monkeys
capuchine monkeys, dusky titi monkeys, amblypygi (cave spider),bullet ants, blue headed parrots, scarlet macaws, blue and yellow macaws, red and  green macaws, woodpeckers, toucan, opossum, big and small lizards, many frogs and toads and butterflies. And not to forget: a giant white panda hugging a jaguar. It was christmas after all. 

Manuel is not only a guide, but also a volunteer at TRC, climbing trees and getting the macaw chicks out of their nests. We really feel that we benefitted from his involvement in the project in this way: he understands the work being done by TRC from his own experience. We feel more guides should participate in the project in this way.

Manuel speaks very good English, is a very communicative and sociable person, and really a jungle guy as he grew up in Iquitos. We had a lot of fun with Manuel and would definitely recommend him. 

All in all, we had an amazing experience at TRC. It is the experience on the whole, the sneaking through the jungle feel, stumbling upon a herd of wild boars snorting aggressively at you, silently getting a tarantula to climb out of its hole, or the view of the rainforest from a tower at four in the morning, when all is waking up. In hindsight, we would rather have stayed all our nights at TRC, rather than combining it with stays at the Refugio Amazonas (see other review). 

Thanks to everybody at TRC and Rainforest Expeditions for this wonderful experience! Good luck with the program!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Fergusson J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DKrautmann, Public Relations Manager at Tambopata Research Center, responded to this review, January 15, 2013
Dear Fergusson J,

Thank you for visiting the Tambopata Research Center and for taking the time to write such a detailed trip report. We hope your description helps future guests best prepare themselves and know what to expect. We will make sure to let you guide, Manuel, know what a great time you had. We appreciate your comments and hope to see you again someday!
Thanks Again!
Danielle Krautmann and the staff at the Tambopata Research Center
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 3, 2013

Let me first say that this was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. But this is relative, and it may not be for everyone. I would say that if you value luxurious accommodations over the setting, learning, activity, and adventure, then please don't go to TRC (or Refugio Amazonas for that matter). If you want to learn, experience pristine rain forest, eat excellent food, and get your mind blown everyday and don't mind staying in rustic (but very clean, and surprisingly hip-ish) accommodations, then please do not miss this.

We were vacillating between a 3 night 4 day trip to Refugio Amazonas and the 4 night 5 day trip to TRC. We went with the TRC trip and I cannot express how happy I am that we made this decision. First and foremost, it made our group smaller. I was travelling with 2 friends and we were grouped with only one other couple for a total of 5 people to our one guide, Juan Carlos.

I will pause for one minute to talk about Juan Carlos. Above anything else, he made this trip for us. I cannot speak to other guides (although my limited exposure to some of them was always a good interaction) and a guide that may not be as knowledgeable or relateable might have changed my overall impression of the trip (although even a mediocre guide couldn't have ruined the trip). Juan Carlos was our age (around 30), super knowledgeable about the wildlife and biology of the rain forest, incredibly experienced (these trails seemed like his second home), hugely respectful in tenor while telling us about what we were seeing, and so skilled that he would stop and point out something that seemed impossible to be aware of in the camouflage of the thick rain forest. It got to the point that I would tell him some species that I wanted to see and he literally would seek it out and find it. It was like playing a wildlife observation jukebox. I'd say "Tarantula" 5 minutes later he was coaxing one out of her hole in the ground. I'd say "Harpy Eagle" (this one is an almost impossible ask) and a couple of hours later we are at a seemingly empty Harpy Eagle nest. They were not yet roosting so seeing them at this location was rare. However Juan Carlos just sensed that they were there. After going off trail to several vantage points, Juan Carlos finally pointed high above the nest to a spot at least 100 ft from the floor to a majestic Harpy Eagle that was so big, it was hard to fathom. This is the type of guiding we got from start to finish and I cannot tell you how great he made this experience.

I won't give a complete narrative of our trip, but I will tell you the only regret I have is that we did not stay longer. I would have liked to stay a couple days longer, at least, and I am particularly disappointed that we did not experience the Ayahuasca ceremony. I want to say that I AM NOT a drug person, and I am certainly not a hallucinogenic drug person (I have had 2 out of 2 bad experiences when I was younger and more experimental). This, however sounds like a wholly different experience. I was convinced (although never sold) by just talking to Juan Carlos about it. He educated us, per usual, and I have to say that while I would be somewhat nervous about it, it only sounds like a deeply spiritual and self exploratory experience that I think could only be had there.

I'll end by giving some facts: You will wake up early (4am-530am) almost every day, but you will not care. The rooms and lodges are basic but clean and there is warm water (although you'll want it to be cool anyway). The trips up and down the river to the lodges are long but incredibly beautiful and exciting and really kind of a nice break between all of the hiking. If you go to TRC however, you will spend basically a full day total (including all of the trips up and down) traveling on the river. The wildlife is incredible and plentiful. We saw 5 species of monkey, caimans, harpy eagle, and almost anything you could imagine. The only thing I did not see that I was hoping to see was the elusive jaguar. The food is outstanding. The staff is great. You will not have a bad time unless you are devoid of a soul.

Thank you Rainforest Expeditions, and especially Juan Carlos! It changed my perspective on life.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank loeclint
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DKrautmann, Public Relations Manager at Tambopata Research Center, responded to this review, April 11, 2013
Hi loeclint,

On behalf of Rainforest Expeditions, I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us at TRC. We will definitely pass your comments on to your guide Juan Carlos.

In regards to the Ayahuasca ceremony, this is an add-on option for guests who visit our lodges. The Ayahuasca, or 'rope of the spirits' in Quechua, is the master plant of the Amazonian rainforest. For many thousands of years, chamans have used its properties to cure the body and the soul and to connect with gods and nature. The Ayahuasca Session Tour is for those who are willing to explore an ancient spiritual way of understanding nature with a 'shaman' or natural healer. This sometimes rigorous ceremony is performed at night and can take as long as twelve hours. Generally in order to best experience the plant, it takes several days of preparation with a special diet, therefore guests who desire to participate in an Ayahuasca ceremony are recommended to notify us ahead of time or upon check in.

It sounds like you had some great wildlife sightings! Thanks again for taking the time to write the review and for the information you have provided to future guests.
We hope to see you again someday.
Safe travels,

Danielle and the staff at Rainforest Expedtions
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wake Forest, North Carolina, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 2, 2013

Amazing time, great staff, wonderful experience. Hot, humid treks into the rainforest well worth the effort. Got some amazing photos. Definitely the way to see the rainforest. Would definitely recommend Tambopata Research Center to anyone who sincerely wants to see and understand the rainforest of Peru.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Barbara B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
116 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 92 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2013

The earlier review by Heatherob is accurate in terms of advising exactly what the process is like in getting to this place. Read it carefully so your eyes are open to what is in store and you don't end up a complainer or disappointed.

This is not Disneyland, it is the jungle and what you get on any one day is what you get. The animals have not signed appearance contracts.

We stayed here two nights and also two nights at Refugio Amazonas. They are similar places, but also different enough to justify staying at both.

In both places we were with a group of 18 all quite experienced in nature adventures and all agreed that we had the best sleeps of our trip to Peru in the open walled rooms. In October there were few if any mosquitoes and the beds are very comfortable. It was not too hot or too humid, but being Australians we are used to such weather, so we found it comfortable.

The birdlife is interesting, but once again, being Australians we live with extraordinary birdlife every day at home and in the bush, so we were not as blown away as the mostly northern hemisphere city dwellers who were visiting the place.

It was the guides that made the trip fabulous as they are so knowledgeable and personable.

The food was fresh and fine and we were 100% comfortable the whole trip. This was a very worthwhile excursion.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank rubybellissimo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tambopata Research Center

Property: Tambopata Research Center
Address: Collpa Colorado, Tambopata National Reserve 084, Peru
Phone Number:
Location: Peru > Madre de Dios Region > Tambopata National Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 22 Specialty Lodging in Tambopata National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Tambopata Research Center 3*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Tambopata Research Center (TRC) is a spartan yet comfortable 18 bedroom lodge with 8 shared bathrooms. Because of its remote location in uninhabited wilderness, housing stable populations of endangered wildlife, the small scale of its infrastructure and operations and the presence of researchers and naturalist guides, Tambopata Research Center is an excellent headquarters for in depth explorations of Amazonian nature and wildlife. It is located in a half hectare clearing in the middle of the uninhabited portion of the Tambopata National Reserve, less than a kilometer from the world's largest and most diverse macaw claylick. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tambopata Research Hotel Tambopata National Reserve
Tambopata Research Center Peru/Tambopata National Reserve

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