The Butterfly farm is located on the road out to the Manuel Chavez Ballon Museum just before the Municipal campground and a twenty minute walk from Machu Picchu Pueblo. It is definitely not a high-end, super-slick tourist operation but we feel there is something important about supporting local projects and getting off the well-beaten trail when travelling so we decided to include this conservation project for those of you that are looking from something a bit different.
Run by local Machu Picchu resident Leonardo Serrano Gutierrez with the help of volunteers, the project was set up to investigate and conserve 8 species of butterfly found in the area. A butterfly reproduction programme has been put in place and butterflies are released back into nature once they reach maturity so that local butterfly populations increase.
The project is clearly under-funded with a shabby and very basic interpretation centre but the main reason for a visit is to see butterflies up close in their various stages of reproduction from larvae to butterfly. It’s a fascinating lesson in nature particularly for kids who will see first-hand where butterflies come from and will learn interesting facts like how dark-coloured butterflies are darker to attract the sun and raise their body temperatures.
Best of Peru Travel Recommends:
- The butterflies tend to be more active in the mornings so it is best to visit between 8 and 11am.
- The best period of the year to visit is April – September as during rainy season (December – March) the butterflies seek cover and are less visible.