The tropical rainforest of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is inhabited by an interesting variety of animal species. However, since so many people pass through the trail daily (which scares off the local fauna) wildlife sightings will be scarce. Even so, we will leave you with a list of the animals you might encounter on the trail, we hope this information will help make your trip to Ciudad Perdida even more fascinating. In the first part of this article we will talk about the species of birds you can see during the Lost City tour.*

Most common birds in the Lost City trail

The sunrise on the trail will be accompanied by a musical concert performed by the infinite species of birds found in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, despite the variety, at the beginning of this article we mentioned that little can be seen, remember that to increase the probability of a sighting someone in the group must know how to identify the bird by its vocalization (sounds).

Crested Oropendola (Psarocolius decumanus)

It is member of the orioles and grackles’ family. It’s a big bird, easy to identify, its body is mainly black, has a long pointed yellow bill and a yellow tail. Whether you can see this bird or not you surely will see its hanging nests high in the trees, which are woven meticulously reaching up to one meter long.

Hummingbirds

At least 16 species of hummingbirds can be seen in this area but the most common is the Rufous-tailed hummingbird (Amazilia tzacatl), as its name suggests it has a rufous (reddish brick-like color) tail and a red bill, what makes it easier to identify. It is more abundant along the lower part of the trail.

Other species of hummingbirds: White-chinned Sapphire (Hylocharis cyanus), Long-billed Hermit (Phaetornis longirostris), Band-tailed Barbthroat (Threnetes ruckeri).

White-bearded manakin (Manacus manacus)

Even if you cannot see them on the road, perhaps you can hear them in the distance, they emit a sound similar to the clash of several stones, hence they call it “Pistolero” (gunman) locally. In the video you can listen this “inorganic” sound and see one of the birds performing its courtship dance into the bushes (unfortunately it was taken using a smartphone so, the zoom was very limited).

Toucans

You can find them high up in the trees, or flying over the forest. The most colorful of the species mentioned here is the keel-billed toucan.

Keel-billed Toucan (Ramphastos sulfuratus)

If the most interesting approach to a toucan in your life has been the mascot appearing on a cereal box (as it is my case, sadly) we really hope the stars aligned to give you the chance to have a glance of this beautiful bird. Even when its body is not colorful, “who needs it when your bill has such a dazzling combination of red, green, blue, yellow, orange…” a keel-billed toucan would say us.

Other species of toucans and toucanets: Collared Aracari (Pteroglossus torquatus), Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus).

We will continue our wildlife adventure talking about the amazing insects you can find in the Lost City trail. See you later!

Note: This article is not intended to provide information for experts birdwatchers, we know they need more details than the forementioned.

This is more than a simple packing list it is the most complete, updated and detailed guide to pack for the Lost City tour. Let’s start!

Before start packing it is important to know…

Turists carrying their backpacks

The first thing you should know is that you will be carrying your backpack all the way, for this reason the most important thing when packing, is to carry only what is necessary, the less volume and weight the better. And secondly, you will be responsible for what happens to your belongings, so keep in mind details such as the rain or the fact that passing through a river could make you accidentally end up wetting some electronic device and spoiling it.

What you should not bring to the Lost City

  • Documents such as IDs, licenses, passports, among others. We recommend you keep a copy of any important document with you and the originals in a dry and safe place.
  • Credit or debit cards.
  • And even if there are still people who recommend it, you do not need to bring: Sleeping bag, hammock, pillow, sheet, filter, tablets or drops to purify water, food.
  • The yellow fever vaccine is not mandatory to enter into the Ciudad Perdida Archaelogical Park.

What to bring? the ultimate packing list to the Lost City

Before starting, if you have trekking clothing, footwear and equipment, do not hesitate to use it for this adventure, and about the backpack you do not need something bigger than a 30 liter daypack.

Clothing

  • 2 Sets of shirts and shorts: Comfortable for the weather, allowing perspiration and quick drying. The environment and the activity will keep you wet all the time so the best to avoid long-sleeved shirts and long pants (although we can not overlook the fact that this type of clothing could give you extra protection against insects, but that’s up to you).
  • Sleepwear: At night it won’t be too cold, however, a long sleeve shirt and long pants will help you sleep warmer and feel more comfortable. (1 Set).
  • Swimsuit: At each camp you will have the refreshing option of taking a dip in the river, so be prepared. (1 Set)
  • Footwear: If you do not have hiking shoes, a pair of sneakers can replace them, as long as they have a good grip sole. We warn you that some parts of the trail may be slippery and you will depend on your shoes and balance. (1 Pair)
  • Sandals or flip flops: To give your feet some rest when you are at each camp. (1 Pair)
  • Underwear: Take 4 or 5 changes of underwear, the same for socks.

Hygiene and personal care

  • Soap, shampoo, deodorant, cream and toothbrush, toilet paper: Remember that you will only be in the jungle for a few days, so avoid carrying unnecessary amounts.
  • Insect repellent and sunscreen: For application, we usually recommend sunscreen first and then after a half of an hour, the insect repellent.
  • Medication: Bring your formulated medicines and don’t forget to take them on time. In Mega Sierra Tour we will be willing to provide you with all the information you require, but remember to consult directly with your doctor any doubts you may have about your health in relation to the tour you will be doing.
  • Electronic devices: You can bring your cell phone, camera and/or drone (There are some restrictions on the footage you can take along the trail to the Lost City). At the camps you can charge them and some have an internet connection, which you can access by paying for the service at each camp. For this reason, do not forget to bring the chargers of your devices and optionally an external rechargeable battery.
  • Water bottle or hydration bladder: We recommend a capacity of at least one liter and a half. You may need 2 liters but remember that each liter of water adds one kilogram of weight to your luggage and, at each camp you can recharge your bottle with water.

Other supplies

  • Cash: From $300.000 COP on is recommended. Why? well, maybe you want to drink some beers, buy some souvenirs, or you need to rent a mule for a part of the trail (Since the price is based on what they pay for carrying food and other supplies, not humans, it is costly renting a mule here), in that case this amount of money can back you up.
  • Flashlight: In case you have to go to the bathroom at night. If you have no problem using your cell phone’s torch, much better, use it and avoid carrying more stuff.
  • Traveler’s towel (microfiber towel)
  • Something to get the most of your time: Playing cards, a good book, a travel journal…
  • Optional: Trekking poles, hand sanitizer gel

Mandatory

  • Bring the best attitude! Be positive, enjoy the nature, make new friends, discover new ways of thinking, fill your lungs with pure air, challenge yourself…

With this in mind we hope you can pack everything you need for enjoying the most this trek in the jungle avoiding carry extra weight. Now you are ready to go!

Note: We will be updating this post as we see it convenient.