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Based at Sani Lodge, enjoy full days of guided excursions through Yasuni National Park and the Napo River, while staying at private palm-thatched cabins each night.
Upon arrival to Quito, fly into Coca and travel into the center of the Amazon rainforest to fully explore Yasuni National Park, a designated UNESCO international biosphere. Discover animals, plants and indigenous communities native to the region and the Napo River by kayak and foot. Return to the lodge each night to savor delicious chef-prepared dinners at the open-air restaurant.
Grab a cocktail at the Buhos Bar, a little corner of civilization, to watch the golden colors of the sunset before retiring for the evening.
Upon arrival to Quito International Airport, a private taxi will take you to your colonial hotel located within the historic district of old town Quito (approx. 1 hour).
Quito, Ecuador’s capital and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the perfect introduction to Ecuador’s rich culture and history. High in the Andean foothills at an altitude of 9,350 feet, this once-ancient Incan city is now the country’s bustling epicenter, boasting 2.6 million people. With its well-preserved colonial center, tourists and locals alike enjoy roaming the city’s narrow streets for a mix of 16th century historic attractions and modern-day shops and upscale restaurants.
After a forty-five minute domestic flight from Quito to Coca, a staff member will greet you upon arrival. Embark on an enchanting 2.5 hour boat ride on the Napo River and admire the amazing biodiversity surrounding the river banks.
The journey continues with a brief walk, paddle canoe and motorized canoe ride across the beautiful Challuacochoa blackwater oxbow lake to Sani Lodge.
After getting settled in, take a short hike on nearby trails to get acquainted with the sights, smells and sounds of the Amazon jungle. With chances of seeing 13 species of primates, uncommon amphibians and extraordinary flora, this walk forecasts the richness of the Amazon ecosystem. Return to the lodge for dinner before heading out to the lagoon for an evening canoe ride. Learn about the region while paddling in search of nocturnal wildlife, and glowing eyes, amongst the darkness. Tonight, enjoy a well-deserved rest and recapture of your day’s events at the lodge.
Overnight: Sani Lodge
Set out for a full day of guided hiking within the Yasuni jungle. Keep a look out for impossibly small species of frogs and insects below while searching for larger animals in the forest canopy high above. Learn about medicinal plants and hone your survival and hunting skills by testing a blow gun, a tool still used in the area today.
Make your way to the lagoon to set out on kayaks for an afternoon of recreational paddling, with a stop at the Sani Lodge’s observation tower. Sitting atop a 108ft staircase and giant tree (named God’s Hand tree) within the forest canopy, this wooden observatory is an incredible way to view wildlife from an entirely different perspective. Keep your eyes peeled for 565 registered species of birds, howler monkeys, squirrel monkeys, sloths and other exotic species difficult to see from the ground.
Enjoy another delicious dinner before retiring for the night.
Overnight: Sani Lodge
Depart to Yasuni National Park for a deep-dive into the Amazon jungle. This 9,620-square kilometer park is Ecuador’s largest mainland park and a designated UNESCO international biosphere reserve. The park was untouched by the last ice age, resulting in a thriving and diverse pool of species and one of the last true wildernesses in Ecuador.
Support a local community’s women’s project and turtle breeding work during a Sani community visit. Take part in a cooking class in preparation of your lunch for a very special bonding opportunity. Your cultural exchange and exploration continues with a short hike following the “camino vecinal” (local walk). Learn about architecture, agriculture and how plants in the rainforest directly impact the daily life and health of native tribes.
Return to the lodge for dinner and an optional night walk to view a myriad of snakes, spiders and frog species.
Overnight: Sani Lodge
After breakfast, make your way back to Coca for a return flight back to Quito International Airport, the end of your journey. As you head back up the Napo River, learn about some of the challenges that local communities and ecotourism face today to keep the Amazon and surrounding region preserved.
Add on to your Amazon adventure with a trip to the Galapagos Islands for an ultimate wildlife experience. To add on another tour, or for more information, please contact us here at Macs Adventure and a specialist will be happy to help assist you.
We hand-select boutique hotels or converted local estates, so you can enjoy your stay in historic Quito. Quito is a year-round destination with a large volume of travelers. As such, we may at times have to accommodate you at alternative locations due to availability. We regularly use the following properties, but will accommodate lodging of equal standard should any of the following be unavailable.
While in the Yasuni National Park and jungle, we have carefully selected the Sani Lodge, for a truly unique Amazon experience. The Sani Lodge is the only lodge of its kind within the region. Please take this into consideration when booking. We are proud to support this ecolodge, its efforts towards preservation and its support of indigenous communities.
In both locations, we book standard rooms that provide comfort, modern amenities, exceptional service, multilingual staff and individual character and charm.
This trip is based on two people sharing a room. If you’d like separate rooms, a single supplement is required.
If you would like to request a twin room (same room with two separate beds), please notify us during booking so we can request this option.
Breakfast is included each morning and ranges from buffet style to a set menu or a la carte. A typical breakfast includes juice, tea, coffee, yogurt, granola, breads, jams, eggs or a selection of hot dishes. Please notify us of dietary restrictions at the time of booking.
Three lunches and dinners are included in this trip. Lunches consist of a packed lunch upon arrival, a picnic lunch for when you are exploring the jungle remotely and a meal prepared during the cooking class and community visit. Dinners are provided by Sani Lodge and held at the open-air restaurant.
All other meals are not included, so you can choose to dine at your hotel or from available nearby cafés or restaurants.
You can request to add extras nights during this itinerary. For further details, please ask us at the time of booking.
This Heritage Boutique Hotel has been tastefully renovated for a true feel of Ecuadorian culture. Enjoy all the modern conveniences built into the original house, with colors and stone walls that reflect the passing of time. The rooms have been designed to provide an authentic experience in the colonial center of Quito.
Sani Lodge is considered one of the most biologically diverse spots on Earth. Located on 42,000 hectares (103,784 acres) of untouched rainforest, Sani Lodge is surrounded by 1,500 species of trees, hundreds of climbing vines and exotic flowers. Guests can enjoy viewing local wildlife and garden terraces, relaxing within the communal lounge or gathering at the open-air restaurant and bar. Private thatched-roof cabins offers clean modern amenities and mosquito nets to keep you comfortable during the night. The owners of Sani Lodge play a key part in the local community and ensure that all profits help improve healthcare and education.
This trip is available year-round. Availability for this trip is based upon the capacity of the Sani Lodge. We therefore suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalized to ensure availability for specific dates.
While rainy and misty weather is apart of the Amazon experience, traveling between the months of December to March might leave you with slightly drier weather.
This trip is graded easy and includes daily walks or kayaking with expert guides. To get the most from your trip, you should be in decent physical shape and are able to climb stairs, walk three to six hours every day and enjoy boat based activities. The hiking is mostly on dirt trails within the jungle. The kayaking is on gentle river waters, and consists of one to two persons per boat. No prior experience is necessary, although your ability to swim is a must.
Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard gear such as durable hiking boots, quick-dry clothing, wide brimmed hats, insect repellent, sunscreen, binoculars, rain gear and a day pack.
If you have any questions about what to take, we'd be happy to share our own top tips and advice.
Travel insurance helps protect your travel investment, your belongings and most importantly you, from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip. For more information, please visit our travel insurance page by clicking this link.
Please check your visa requirements with the foreign office or the embassy in your country of residence before traveling to Ecuador.
For US and UK residents, proof of travel or health insurance and a valid passport for at least six months past the planned date of departure from Ecuador is required. Visas are not required unless you are planning to visit longer than 90 days. You may be asked about your reason for travel and provide evidence of a return or onward flight upon arrival.
The best airport to arrive at is Quito International Airport, which has flights from international and national destinations.
By Private Taxi
Included in this trip is a private transfer from the airport to your overnight hotel in Quito and back. A private taxi will pick you up directly from Quito International Airport, outside the arrivals exit, after passing through customs, baggage claim and security, and will drop you off at your overnight hotel (approx. 1 hour).
The following day, a private taxi will pick you up directly from your overnight hotel and transfer you to the domestic departures terminal at Quito International Airport.
Included in this trip is a domestic flight from Quito International Airport to Coca, Francisco de Orellana Airport and back. We typically book flights to Coca using the domestic airlines Tame or Avianca (approx. $180-$250 per person). Due to a long travel day, via many methods of transportation to the Amazon, we typically choose the earliest flight out of Quito to allow plenty of time to get to your Amazon lodge. Should you have any specific requirements for flights, please inform our team here at Macs Adventure during booking.
All boat transfers and transportation services related to the itinerary within the Amazon Sani Lodge are included in this trip.
For additional transportation services outside the provided itinerary, such as a taxi to a specific restaurant or location, the host at your evening’s accommodation can help assist you in making the necessary arrangements.
Each accommodation will supply you with bottled water, filtered water stations and opportunities to purchase more should you require it. While water from the faucets are often labeled safe for brushing your teeth, we recommend using only bottled or filtered water at all times to avoid any chance of contamination. Please plan on bringing bottled water, or better yet, invest in a water bottle with a built-in purification and filtration system (such as Grayl or Katadyn) with you during hikes and throughout the day. Drinking plenty of water helps with dehydration and the negative effects of altitude sickness.
The Sani Lodge is the perfect way to be completely immersed within the natural surroundings of the Amazon jungle, without the compromise of modern amenities or creature comforts. This “first-rate” ecolodge offers a private, yet social atmosphere for guests. With private cabanas and bathrooms, solar electricity, internet, restaurant, bar/lounge, multilingual staff and hot water showers, you can enjoy a genuine jungle experience without having to “rough” it.
This itinerary allows for flexibility. If you are unable to hike,
kayak or do an activity, please let us know at the time of booking and
we can help assist you with an alternate activity (if applicable). If
you need to skip the day
entirely, inform your hotel immediately and have them assist you with
medical services or a
transfer to the next location.
If you need medical services, you'll find information in your pre-departure information packet or you can ask for assistance at the front desk. As always, 24/7 support from Macs Adventure is only a phone call away.
Free WiFi will be available for use at your overnight accommodations and while within the Sani Lodge. However, service can become spotty, rare or non-existent, especially during substantial rainstorms, while exploring the Amazon. Even with WiFi available, we suggest playing it safe by keeping your phone in flight mode while surfing the internet to avoid costly data or roaming fees.