Alojamiento Arévalo (Moyobamba 233, tel. 042/52-5265, US$11 s, US$16 d) is a classic backpackers’ place. It has private bathrooms, fridge/bar, cable TV, and hot water. It also has laundry service.
La Patarashca Lodge (Lamas 261, tel. 042/52-7554, www.lapatarashca.com , US$21 s, US$30 d with breakfast) is a funky low-budget hangout with clean rooms painted in colorful and interesting jungle tones, good breakfasts, and WiFi but no air-conditioning. Owner César Reategui operates a restaurant next door and, in his spare time, works as a wilderness guide. This is definitely the nicest backpackers’ hostel in Tarapoto  and well worth the money, especially if you plan on contracting César for tours. Groups of two or more will enjoy the room with a loft.
Hostal Casa de Palos (Leoncio Prado 155, tel. 042/52-0479, hostalcasadepalos [at] hotmail [dot] com, US$25 s, US$32 d) is the best option for a midprice budget. Opened in 2009, this seven-room hostel has really nice and comfy beds, impeccable bathrooms, hot water, WiFi, remote-control fans, 21-inch flat screens, and cable TV. It is conveniently situated two blocks away from the Plaza de Armas.
La Posada Inn (San Martín 146, tel. 042/52-2234, laposada_inn [at] hotmail [dot] com, US$25 s, US$34 d) is a renovated colonial house a few meters from the Plaza de Armas. Off the busy street, guests enter a hushed atmosphere of orchids, stained wood floors, and comfortable rooms with hot water, refrigerators, TV, phone, WiFi, and air-conditioning or fans. The landings outside the rooms are a great place to relax and chat.
Plaza del Bosque (Av. Circunvalación 2449, tel. 042/52-3448, www.plazabosque.com.pe , US$36 s, US$50 d, with breakfast) is on the high part of town, five minutes away from the Plaza de Armas. It has 31 bungalow brick-built rooms surrounded by dense vegetation. Amenities include cable TV, WiFi, laundry, garage, swimming pool, and a restaurant. Rates also include free transfer to the airport. There are also cheaper rooms only with fans (US$29 s, US$43 d). Claudia Arévalo, who used to run Colonial Inn, is now the manager of this hotel. She is helpful, friendly, and resourceful.
Cordillera Escalera Lodge (Prolongación Alerta 1521, tel. 042/942-614-850, www.cordilleraescalera.com , US$30 s, US$36 d, breakfast and airport transfer included) is a good option if you want to be outside of the city, savoring nature, without spending loads of money in a lodge. Overlooking the Cordillera Escalera, on top of a small hill, this lodge is 15 minutes east of Tarapoto  and can accommodate 14 people.
A relatively new hotel in town is Hotel Río Cumbaza (Pedro de Urzúa 515, tel. 042/52-1491, www.riocumbazahotel.com , US$39 s, US$57 d with breakfast), which has 50 rooms with air-conditioning, cable TV, minifridge, WiFi, garage, laundry service, a swimming pool, and 24-hour room service.
About 10 minutes outside the city is Hotel Río Shilcayo (2 km outside Tarapoto, Pasaje las Flores 224, Banda de Shilcayo, tel. 042/52-2225, www.rioshilcayo.com , US$68 s, US$82 d, buffet breakfast and airport transfers included), with five hectares of green. Brick buildings surround a round pool with bar, thatch-shaded tables, and well-maintained palm groves and lawn. There are 22 rooms with all the modern services, including air-conditioning, cable TV, minifridge, and WiFi. Another option is one of the 15 more private bungalows, which sleep up to three and cost US$93. The hotel also offers 3–4-day packages, starting at US$150 pp, all-inclusive.
Puerto Palmeras (Carretera Fernando Belaunde Terry, Km 614, tel. 042/52-3978, www.puertopalmeras.com.pe , US$78 s, US$128 d, breakfast and airport transfer included) has a logo in Spanish, el paraíso existe, “paradise exists.” When you reach this tasteful and relaxed resort, tucked into a river bend far from the hustle and bustle of Tarapoto, you will totally agree it is paradise. This resort is a perfect getaway for both couples in search of solitude and families looking for a range of well-organized activities.
Everything—riverside restaurant, poolside bar, elegant rooms, local tours—is done with the highest level of quality, making Puerto Palmeras one of the best resorts in the Peruvian Amazon. Rooms are spacious, with beautiful bathrooms, minifridge, cable TV, hot water, and private terraces that look out over either the pool or the river. You also have suites (starting at US$182) and duplex rooms for four or five people (starting at US$171). For moments of peace and quiet, there are stone courtyards and open-air sitting areas decorated with a mind-blowing collection of paintings from local artists. The sprawling grounds around the resort also include playing fields, a lake with canoes, and an island population of monkeys.
This resort, constructed during the strife-ridden 1990s by determined entrepreneur Carlos González Henríquez, is the crown jewel in a network of hotels that includes Puerto Patos, on the shore of Laguna Azul; Lago Lindo; Puerto Pericos, in Yurimaguas ; and Puerto Pumas, a stone’s throw from Laguna Pomacocha. Check the website for programs and other travel options.
PumaRinri Huallaga Lodge (tel. 042/52-2225, www.pumarinri.com ) is 35 kilometers southeast of Tarapoto, on the road that leads to Chazuta. It is in the middle of a 62-
hectare private reserve situated in the canyon stretch of the Río Huallaga. Surrounded by montane cloud forest, rivers, and streams, the lodge is very close to the Área Regional de Conservación Cordillera Escalera and Parque Nacional Cordillera Azul, both protecting unique ecosystems. PumaRinri offers two all-inclusive programs: Tarapoto Adventure, combining stays at Hotel Río Shilcayo with the lodge (starting at three days/two nights, US$189 pp), and Tarapoto Amazonía, exclusively at Puma Rinri, with a variety of outdoor activities, including rafting in the Huallaga (starting at three days/two nights, US$214 pp).