Puerto Maldonado is the capital of the Madre de Dios region in southeastern Peru. It is also known as the access road to the south of the Amazon jungle. The central tower of the Obelisk overlooks the city from above, along with displays of local history. On the shore of the Madre de Dios River, there is a busy ferry dock near the Plaza de Armas. Near the city is the biodiverse Tambopata National Reserve that stretches through the savannah and ancient jungle.
Arriving to Puerto Maldonado by air
To get to Puerto Maldonado, one usually must travel from Lima - Cusco first before reaching the Padre Aldamiz (PEM) airport in Puerto Maldonado. Since domestic flights in Peru change so much, it is difficult to recommend carriers - however the most reliable seem to be LanPeru and StarPeru. Commercial flights in and out of Puerto Maldonado are almost always in the morning or early afternoon. Make sure to have your Yellow Fever Vaccination Card on you; local officials often ask for it even though it may or may not be "officially" required.
Arriving to Puerto Maldonado by land
The road to Puerto Maldonado from Cusco is improving since it is part of the Interoceanic highway, but currently the bus trip still takes 12 hours, so most tourist opt for the quicker and more comfortable 30-minute flight. It is also possible to hire a car from a tour company or taxi and it takes about ten hours with a few stops. The road is surprisingly empty for most of the way. The mountain pass rises to 4700 m, and then plunges dramatically into the rain forest. Have your camera ready for the vistas, and the lamas and local shepherds.
Cusco to Puerto Maldonado takes approx. 10 hours and costs . Lima to Puerto Maldonado takes approx. 36 hours. The Interoceanic Highway is completed and the road is well maintained, although the section from Cusco to Puerto Maldonado is quite curvy.
Arriving to Puerto Maldonado by boat
You can reach Puerto Maldonado from either the Tambopata or Madre de Dios rivers, but this is not likely for tourists.