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Our 4 Days Amazon Rainforest Tour - Adventure in Ecuador's Jungle

Updated: Apr 9

Nature lovers have the opportunity for a very special adventure in Ecuador: in jungle lodges you can spend a few days in the middle of the Amazon Rainforest!


How to get there and what you can experience there, you will learn in this article.


Amazonas jungle tour


 

Table of Contents


 



1. How to get from Quito to Cuyabeno


The Amazon adventure starts with a relatively long journey. At 11:00 pm the bus starts at the Secret Garden Hostel in Quito. It than takes you 7 hours north towards the Colombian border.


After 7 hours of driving, you will be dropped off in the town of Lago Agrio and have breakfast in a small hotel.


From there it takes another 2 hour ride by shuttle until you arrive at Rio Cuyabeno. During the 2-hour ride you will have the opportunity to meet your fellow travelers, with whom you will spend the next days in the jungle.


Arrived at the Rio Cuyabeno, the Amazon adventure finally begins.


At a pier, all the luggage for the trip as well as food and drinks will be loaded.


To get to the jungle lodges it takes another 35km across the Rio Cuyabeno, where you can experience first wildlife. The boar trip takes between 2 and 3 hours - depending on how long you need for the first animal observations.


During the trip we have already seen monkeys, various birds and sloths, which was absolutely amazing.



2. Arrival at the Bamboo Eco Lodge in the middle of the Amazon jungle


When finally arrived at the lodge, the lodge crew will already wait for you with some cold drinks. After a short briefing, everyone is then accompanied to their rooms. In Cuyabeno there are about 5 lodges, each with capacities for about 15-20 guests.


Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Cuyabeno Eco Lodge im Amazonas in Ecuador

We were absolutely surprised by the rooms, as they are very comfortable. Especially the bathroom and the view of the rainforest from the bed or the view from the balcony thrilled us.


Unterkunft während Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Eco Lodge im Amazonas

While we were in the Amazon it rained very hard every night, the soundscape was extremely soothing - we have never slept better than here.


After a short rest, we set off on our first tour.



3. Canoe Tour on the Rio Cuyabeno


The most physically demanding activity was without a doubt the canoe tour on the Rio Cuyabeno. Because during this excursion the engine on the boat stays off and you paddle by yourself. The reason for this is that it makes less noise and therefore you can discover even more animals.


Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Tierbeobachtung

On our 2-hour paddle tour we spotted a lot of fascinating wildlife.


During the 4 days we observed a total of the following animals: a small anaconda, some sloths, toucan, many stinky turkeys (a kind of giant chicken, which stinks quite a bit when cooked because of its stomach and therefore got this name from the natives), many pink river dolphins, all kinds of different monkeys (e.g. Wooly Monkey, Howler Monkeys, etc.), frogs, spiders (e.g. a tarantula), as well as a huge black caiman and a smaller one.




4. (Night-) walk thru the Amazon


Besides many trips on the water through the Amazon jungle, we also did a hike on foot. We started in the evening, so that we could hike through the rainforest during dusk and at night (with head flashlights).


Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Wanderung durch den Amazonas

The soundscape at this time is enormous: everywhere chirps and hisses. Even when it starts to rain, you stay completely dry thanks to the huge canopy of leaves.


Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Tierbeobachtung

During our hike we admired many different insects and small animals, such as frogs.

But not only the fauna, but also the flora in the rainforest is unparalleled.


Besides 40m high trees, some of which are hundreds of years old, our guide explained to us how the indigenous people use the various plants, for example, to cure diseases.


On the way back to our lodge, we spotted another small boa constrictor wrapped around a branch.




5. Swimming in the Rio Cuyabeno


One of our absolute highlights was certainly swimming in the Rio Cuyabeno during sunset. We left with our canoes during dusk until we reached a relatively wide spot in the river.


There we could jump into the water and go for a swim near our canoe.


Our guide said that this is not dangerous because caimans tend to stay on the shore. Pirahnas are also in the Rio Cuyabeno these are however (we believe at least), not dangerous.


Funny enough, we had our underwater camera with us, but since the water there is relatively murky, we barely filmed. When we viewed our footage later at the lodge, we could see that a piranha had indeed swum right past us.


After our sunset swim, we returned to the boats and saw a 4.5m long black caiman just a few meters from where we were swimming.


Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Tierbeobachtung eines Kaiman im Amazonas in Ecuador


6. Visit a indigeous tribe


In Cuyabeno reside about 400 indigenous people distributed in 4 villages. The indigenous people own most of the reserve. They earn their money among other things by leasing some areas for lodges as well as by renting the canoes with which the tourists are fetched.


On one day we had the opportunity to visit one of the indigenous peoples, the "Sonas". There we were warmly welcomed with "jungle beer", a slightly alcoholic drink.


Since the indigenous peoples have their own language, our guide translated for us. Following a brief introduction, we then harvested yuka roots together, washed them, peeled them, planed them, squeezed out the water, ground them finely and then kneaded them into dough.


On a hot pan over a fire, the dough is then thinly fried to a delicious bread and tasted directly warm (together with a kind of tuna salad).

The previously squeezed juice of the yuka root is saved and cooked with chili to a spicy paste.


indigenous people in the Amazonas


7. Getting back to Quito


After four exciting days in the jungle, the somewhat long journey back to Quito begins. On the way to the shuttle, you can once again marvel at the wonderful nature and its animal inhabitants on the 35km route across the Rio Cuyabeno.


People visiting the Amazon are probably already nature enthusiasts. However, to experience the rainforest up close is once again a very special experience, which you will probably never forget.


Amazonas Regenwald Tour

One quote from our guide stuck in my mind in particular: "Enjoy your time here in the Amazon rainforest, in 30-40 years all this probably won't exist anymore."


Amazonas Regenwald Tour: Wanderung durch den Amazonas


8. Essential Tips for Your Amazon Adventure


The Amazon Rainforest is definitely worth a trip, but you should prepare a little bit for it. The following points should be clarified before the trip:


  • Duration of your stay: with most providers/lodges you can stay between 3 and 5 days in the rainforest. We definitely recommend staying at least 4 days (3 nights), as anything less would simply be too short.

  • Is the area you are visiting affected by malaria? Cuyabeno is fortunately malaria-free, but nevertheless we protected ourselves from mosquito bites (by using a mosquito spray as well as light, loose clothing), because mosquito bites in the Amazon are sometimes much more painful than those of our local mosquitoes. In addition, there is an increased risk of yellow fever in certain regions. If you are traveling to a malaria or yellow fever region, it is advisable to consult a doctor in advance about a possible malaria prophylaxis or yellow fever vaccination.


Which medicines we had in our luggage on our trip, you can find in our blog post "First Aid Kit for Sout America".


  • Which tours are planned? Find out in advance which tours are planned by your lodge and take appropriate clothing and equipment with you. For a night hike, a head flashlight is absolutely necessary - a cell phone light is definitely not enough.

  • How is the electricity supply on site? Since the rainforest lodges are located in the middle of nature, you may not have much electricity, or only in common areas. We need quite a lot of energy for our camera equipment, so we chose a lodge that has enough solar panels to supply each room with enough power. Alternatively, you can of course bring power banks etc. with you.

  • There is no cell phone reception in the Amazon! You will not have cell service during your stay. So let your loved ones know in advance so no one at home has to worry. Of course, all lodges are equipped with a satellite phone to contact "civilization" in case of emergency, but these are not for private use.


 

Would you dare to spend a few days in the middle of the rainforest? Or have you perhaps already visited it? Feel free to share your opinion in the comments or via our contact form.


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