The 4-day Amazon program is based at Waita Lodge, which is located in the lower part of the Aguarico River, in the Cuyabeno National Park. This lodge offers the opportunity to explore the lower part of the Cuyabeno River. It is perfect for people who want to be far away from the other lodges. In this place, it is possible to admire one of the particular ecosystems of the Amazon basin: the flooded forest or Igapo. As for the cabins of the lodge, they are built in the traditional Indian style of the jungle.
4 Days Cuyabeno Amazon Adventure
4-Day Tour Itinerary
Our adventure starts at 9:30 at Hotel D'Mario for people arriving by bus to the city of Lago Agrio. We then take our private bus for approximately 2 hours to reach the town of Tierras Orientales, located on the banks of the Aguarico River. At this point, we will provide you with a Box Lunch and prepare to take the motor canoe. We will begin our journey downstream Aguarico River. It takes approximately 3 hours to reach the bocana place where the river Aguarico joins the river Cuyabeno. Here, we will have the opportunity to enjoy an incredible landscape since it is a place where you can observe without difficulty the pink dolphins of freshwater. You will also see the great difference between the secondary forest and the primary forest. After enjoying this spectacle, we will ride 30 more minutes upstream on the river Cuyabeno and arrive at our Amazon Lodge, located in the lagoon San Francisco, inside the reserve Cuyabeno.
Along this route, we will be able to appreciate the great biodiversity of the forest and photograph several species of animals such as monkeys, birds, reptiles, and aquatic mammals. You will be able to observe them without difficulty since our guides will provide you with binoculars, in case you need them.
At the Lodge, we will have time to relax and familiarize ourselves with the place. After dinner, our guide will give us a briefing about the activities for the following days and will invite us to go on a night walk around the camp in search of interesting nocturnal species such as insects, spiders, amphibians, tree snakes, and many other animals.
The best time for bird watching is before dawn, so our activity starts at 6:00. We will take our rowing canoe to enjoy the sunrise and the incredible landscape of the rainforest and to navigate through small lakes near the Lodge. During this tour, we will have the opportunity to observe a wide variety of species of birds and mammals. After having enjoyed a fantastic landscape, we return to our Lodge to enjoy a delicious breakfast.
After a short rest, our guide will invite us to go on a walk of approximately 3 hours. Our local guide will share his knowledge about the practical use of medicinal plants that his ancestors have transmitted through generations. He will also provide many explanations about the fauna and flora of the area and his connection with the world of botany. We then return to our Lodge to have a delicious lunch. At 16:30, we will once again take our rowing canoe to navigate around the lagoon of the Ceibo, «giant tree of the jungle», located near our Lodge. Here, we will be able to admire the forest flooded by black water, also called Igapo, considered within the tropical rainforest as one of the 5 ecosystems dominated by the famous trees of Macrolobium. These trees have the great ability to store nutrients in their bark and become home to countless microscopic animals, epiphytes and many species of birds. Afterwards, we will visit the San Francisco river, a narrow white water river surrounded by exuberant vegetation where we can find species of birds that are not found in bigger streams. When the night begins to fall, we will venture downstream in search of caimans (family of lizards) and nocturnal animals such as fishing bats, tree boas and nocturnal birds.
An early activity (around 5:45) allows us to enjoy nature in its pure state since the best hours to enjoy the rainforest and its animal life are before sunrise. We will take the motor canoe to ride downstream Cuyabeno River for approximately 1h30. On the way, we will observe birds starting their day. We will reach the saladero (a clay bank full of nutrient-exposed river banks), where 5 species of colorful parrots and parakeets feed on clay every day around 7:00.
After enjoying this wonderful morning we return to our Lodge for breakfast.
We will take a rest and hop in our motorized canoe once again. At this hour, we will witness a prosperous rainforest activity until we reach the bocana, where the two rivers meet. Here, we will be able to admire the freshwater dolphins and delight in a wonderful landscape where the coloration of the white waters full of sediments coming from the Aguarico River mix with the black waters full of tannins coming from the Cuyabeno River. Back to the lodge, we will savour a tasty lunch.
In the afternoon, we will canoe-ride to the Bird Observation Tower. This tower is built around one of the largest trees in the area, a Ceibo tree. From the top of the tower, at 28 m (92 ft) high, we will have a breath-taking view of the Canopy and the rainforest. This will give us the opportunity to hear and observe a great diversity of animals.
Before returning to our Lodge for dinner, we will make a short night walk around the tower in search of new species of insects.
That day being our last one in this wonderful place, we will go on a forest excursion or canoe ride to witness the awakening of this incredible nature one last time.
After breakfast, you must prepare your luggage for the return trip. We will sail 30 minutes downstream on the Cuyabeno river and then take the Aguarico river upstream for 3 hours until we reach Tierras Orientales. We will have lunch while waiting for our transportation back to Lago Agrio. We will arrive at approximately 16:00 and you will be able to either take the bus or the plane back to Quito.
Observing a variety of animals: monkeys, pink dolphins, snakes, anacondas
Swimming with pink dolphins
Staying in a unique natural reserve in a special location
Round-trip transfer Lago Agrio - Waita Lodge - Lago Agrio (by car & motor canoe)
Ministry of Tourism licensed bilingual naturalist guides trained in biology and eco-tourism
Comfortable accommodation at Waita Lodge ; double, triple and family rooms with private bathrooms
Three nutritious meals daily, including purified bottled water, soft drinks such as tea, coffee & hot chocolate available all day, snacks for the activities
Catering for vegetarians and passengers with dietary restrictions
What's Not Included
Transportation to/from Lago Agrio
Tips for the guide
Soft drinks & alcoholic beverages
Extra meals in Lago Agrio before and after the trip