Moyobamba is not known as the City of Orchids for nothing. Home to more than 3,500 species of orchids that are native to the region, this Amazonian city in the San Martin Region of northern Peru is a destination that is not to be missed.
Although it is a small town by Peruvian standards, it is a great place to discover local flora and fauna. At 2,820 feet above sea level, Moyobamba is blessed with pleasant climate, although it may feel warm and humid for those from temperate regions. The city is also home to several waterfalls, hot springs and lakes. You can explore the Laguna Azul lake and take dips in the natural hot springs of San Mateo. The Gera waterfalls are particularly known for their breathtaking beauty.
Coryanthes macrantha is one of the most famous orchids grown locally. It is known for its strange appearance and many mistake it for cashew fruits. Take time to explore the botanical wealth of the city and its surroundings with an experienced guide. As the region is located in an ecologically sensitive area, you need to make sure that you are extremely careful with the way you interact with nature.
In addition to the orchids and local flora, you can also eat the local cuisine, which is known for its exotic flavors and spices. Most visitors wish to try Juane, which is made from sticky green rice and chicken, cooked in bijao (Heliconia bihai) leaves. You might want to take a trip to the neighboring city of Tarapoto as well.
To reach Moyobamba, you will need to fly from Lima to Tarapoto, which takes about an hour. From there, you can find buses and taxis to Moyobamba easily. While you are at Tarapoto, you can explore local markets and cuisine as well. Tarapoto serves as a base for tourists who wish to explore the inner parts of Peruvian Amazonia. In fact, it makes sense to use visit both Tarapoto and Moyobamba as part of your larger (and longer) Amazonian sojourn.