In as little as 3 hours from the nation’s capital, you can be floating in silence down the still black waters of a jungle stream, deep in shadow amid a careful choral orchestration of countless animals, immersed in the most exuberant botanical garden on Earth.
The sun rays barely filter through the leaves of the trees, but the choir of hundreds of birds and the calls and cries of other animals are the best company for those who wish to enjoy the expeditions in jungle trails. The Ecuadorian Amazon Basin is a treat to the senses, from the freshness of its aromatic breeze to the brilliance of its colors, from the convergence of its sounds to the touch of its spirits; the experience transcends human comprehension.
As one of the most biodiverse sites on this planet, an interminable variety of birds, insects, mammals (including dolphins, tapirs, capybaras, anteaters and monkeys) can be found in their natural habitat. In and around the large protected areas of the Amazonian rainforest, several indigenous ethnic groups live side by side; each group has kept its separate customs and traditions, and a spellbinding knowledge of the secret language of the rainforest. It is estimated that at least 7,000 medical components and ingredients are derived from plants of the Amazon Basin.
What to bring: We recommend light tropical clothes, long sleeves and trousers (to protect yourself from mosquito bites, do not wear short sleeves, T-shirts or shorts), good hiking shoes or rubber boots, raincoat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and hat. Good insect repellent is a must!
Upper Napo River
Tena Misahuallí - Ahuano
The starting point for jungle exploration, located close to the Andean foothills, these are wonderful sites for bird and nature lovers.
The lodge where the passenger will be staying in is located on the shores of the Napo River.
Learn about medicinal plants and their benefits that can be found in this tropical environment, observe fruit trees as well as small yucca, banana, coffee and cocoa plantations.
Visit kichwa communities where they will teach you how to prepare their traditional drink, “chicha”, amongst other cross-culture experiences that will change your life forever.
Our visitors will also have become actively involved with the communities and their everyday activities.
This region is also home to a butterfly farm where one can admire the metamorphosis of these wonderful insects.
Enjoy the sounds of the rainforest at night during an evening walk down jungle trails.
We will be able to watch a great variety of nocturnal insects and learn about their behavior.
It’s possible to spot tarantulas or reptiles on your way. Nightlife in Amazonia is busy!
Yasuní National Park
It’s situated in the eastern and central parts of Ecuadorian Amazonia, an important biogeographical area where endemic species of plants and animals are preserved.
According to UNESCO, more than 700 species of vegetation have been identified and more than 185 mammalian species, 650 bird species, 180 species of reptiles, 100 amphibians and 600 species of fish. You can find two different ethnic groups, the kichwa, and the Huaorani, who due to their so-called primitive lifestyles have received worldwide exposure.
This is a wonderful opportunity to experience fascinating creatures such as monkeys that range in size from the tiny half pound pygmy marmoset to the boisterous 17-pound red howler. You can also encounter caiman, lizards, snakes, anacondas, frogs, and much more.
A tributary of the mighty Amazon River, a large part of the Napo River basin is protected by the Yasuni National Park. During the canoe ride a countless variety of birds can be spotted in their native environments.
Discovered in the sixties by Capuchines, Coca became a missionary post for the Christianization of the Huaorani people. It is a major frontier town for Amazonian jungle adventure tours.
A great variety of canoe and hiking tours are offered in the Reserve providing excellent wildlife viewing opportunities. Several species of monkeys, birds, caiman, piranhas, turtles, and ants can be seen in this area; freshwater dolphins, giant armadillos, anacondas, and manatees are also occasionally spotted.
Enjoy the great diversity of birds early in the morning, during a canoe ride along the Cuyabeno River. Visitors will have the chance to see the splendor and abundance of the untouched Cuyabeno Reserve firsthand, while on these canoe tours or jungle hikes through the rainforest.
A variety of indigenous groups, including the Cofán, the Siona, and the Secoya have traditionally inhabited the area. Tapir Lodge offers a very unique program that allows their guests to visit the legendary Cofán Community that resides on the shores of the Aguarico River.
The natives share with the guests their customs, traditions and beliefs.
Children are also always willing to play and learn from the visitors, creating a truly extraordinary cross-cultural experience.