The Ucayali River (Spanish: Río Ucayali) is the main headstream of the Amazon River. It rises about 110 km (68 mi) north of Lake Titicaca, in the Arequipa region of Peru and becomes the Amazon at the confluence of the Marañón close to Nauta city. The city of Pucallpa is located on the banks of the Ucayali.
The Ucayali was first called San Miguel, then Ucayali, Ucayare, Poro, Apu-Poro, Cocama and Rio de Cuzco. Peru has organised many costly and ably-conducted expeditions to explore it. One of them (1867) claimed to have reached within 380 km (240 mi) of Lima, and the little steamer “Napo” found its way up the violent currents for 124 km (77 mi) above the junction with the Pachitea River, and as far as the Tambo River, 1,240 km (770 mi) from the confluence of the Ucayali with the Amazon. The “Napo” then succeeded in ascending the Urubamba River 56 km (35 mi) upstream from its junction with the Tambo, to a point 320 km (200 mi) north of Cuzco.
Ucayali is home to the Amazon river dolphin, giant otter, and the Amazonian manatee, which are abundant in Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve, close to Nauta. The southeastern border of the reserve is formed by the lower Ucayali River. The river gives its name to the Ucayali Region of Peru and the Ucayali Province of the Loreto Region.
- Explore an untouched part of the Amazon Jungle.
- Discover Pucallpa and take a river boat cruise along the Ucayali to the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve.
3 – 7 Days: Transfer by river boat from the Ucayali River to the Amazon River up by Iquitos, then fly out of Iquitos.