Price: US $7950
Deposit: US $2000
POA for children under the age of 12
Meeting Point: Quito, Ecuador
Length of trip: 10 nights, 11 days
(With possible extensions to Galapagos, or Haciendas)
Group size: minimum 8, Maximum 10
What is included in the price of the trip?
What is NOT included in the price of the trip?
Join us for a life-changing journey as we guide you into the heart and soul of Ecuador and the Amazon rainforest – one of the most bio-diverse places on earth. It is for those who want to deepen their connection with the earth, to take time out to reflect, reassess, recharge, to learn about them selves and indigenous cultures, to learn from indigenous leaders how to best support the Amazon, and have a great deal of fun while doing it!
From the heights of the Andes Mountains to the species-rich jungle floors of the Amazon Basin, discover Ecuador's natural treasures, swim in its waterways, hike with indigenous guides, canoe down mystical rivers deep in the Amazon, take part in ceremonies with Sapara shaman, experience tribal culture, worldview and hospitality, enjoy traditional cuisine, and relax and recuperate in a volcanic thermal spa in the shadow of Ecuador's magnificent volcanoes.
You will hardly believe that this trip is only 10 nights/11 days long – it will feel like three incredible weeks! Due to Ecuador's small size and its diversity (it contains all the ecosystems of South America except the Argentine Pampas) we are able to have a number of experiences in a short space of time, without feeling rushed.
For those who have more time we have a couple of possible additions to your trip - a 5 day, 4 night journey to galapagos or an extended three night hacienda experience in Ecuador's finest haciendas. Please contact us if you are interested in either of these two options and if we can help you plan travels before or after your jungle experience!
Day One: December 27th
Arrive Quito, Ecuador - flights from Europe and the US usually arrive in the evening, you will be collected from the airport and taken to your hotel close by - Hosteria San Jose de Puembo.
Day Two: December 28th
We will travel down from Quito through the famous Valley of the Volcanos, from the Andes down to the gateway to the Amazon Basin. We will stop for lunch in the renowned spa town of Banos, site of many miracles performed by the Virgin of the Holy Water, we will have lunch and some time to explore the beautiful town in the shadow of the Volcano Tungurahua.
We will then drop down through the cloud forest into the Amazon basin, spending the night in a gorgeous little hotel, El Jardin in the jungle frontier town of Puyo were we can visit the botanical gardens, have a hot tub or rest before a delicious dinner, where we will be joined by indigenous leaders who will share with us how they are battling to protect the forest.
Day Three: December 29th
After breakfast, a short drive to the airstrip where we will fly by cessna for about 30 mins before landing in the Sapara territory and the village of Llanchamachocha. This experience is truly magical, we watch as built up areas fall away until we see just a blanket of treetops beneath us as far as the eye can see, snake like glistening rivers wind their way through the trees. As we fly deeper into the mighty Amazon rainforest, the calmer you will feel.
The Sapara people are the 'hippies' of the Amazon - in that they have always been more interested in spirituality and healing than in warfare like most of the surrounding tribes. They are master healers with incredible knowledge of plant medicine.
A people on the verge of extinction due to dwindling numbers and the threat of oil drilling, they created Naku - where we will be staying, to share their knowledge with the outside world so that their wisdom would live on and they could improve the lives of everyone in their community. There are 250 Sapara people left (there were 200,000 at the turn of the last century) UNESCO declared the Sapara language as an "Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity' in 2007.
We will meet with the matriarch of the Sapara, Mukasawa, one of the four remaining speakers of the language and we will first take part in a cleansing ceremony by the people, where we will be welcomed to their land and given a Sapara name, then a short canoe ride down the river to our stunning riverside encampment. Time for settling into our home for the next five nights, rest, reading, or our favourite - bathing and sitting in the river and listening to the sound of the forest.
Day Four: December 30th
Upon waking we will have another powerful cleansing ceremony with the Sapara people, so that we may leave behind that which no longer serves us and to become more connected with the forest around us.
We will spend the day learning about the forest and walking with indigenous leaders as their share their way of life with us.
Day Five: December 31st
We will canoe downstream, with Manari the shaman and leader of the Sapara and a very keen fisherman, sharing with us the Sapara cosmovision, way of life and world view, in between fishing!
Our lunch, rest and swimming time will be on a 'beach' by the the river. We will visit places sacred to the Sapara people and make camp before sunset with lots of time to swim and rest. Then we will dine on fresh fish cooked over an open fire and have a deep sleep surrounded by the sounds of the forest and the gentle lapping of the river.
Day Six: January 1st
We will return partially by canoe, and then we will walk in the forest. On the way we will stopping for Manari to explain the traditional shamanic ceremony which we will take part in this evening, and we will to spend sometime reflecting individually in a beautiful place in the forest. Returning to the camp to prepare for the ceremony and bathe.
Day Seven: January 2nd
After a delicious breakfast Manari and other elders will help us understand our dreams and experiences from the previous nights ritual. We will spend time with the community, exchanging music and dance. So if you have a special act now is the time to start practicing it! The Sapara love to share in a cultural exchange. Those who want to can play jungle volleyball with the very fit Sapara boy. We will have the chance to buy Sapara artisanal gifts to take home with us. Or lie by the river reading, reflecting, journaling, and enjoying our last day in the jungle.
We will be bringing non electric slow food cookers to gift to the community so those who are interested can help demonstrate and cook with the women.
Day Eight: January 3rd
We will gather to say goodbye to our hosts Then we will fly out of the jungle back to Shell. Where we will be met by our luxury bus and we will head up into the mountains again by a different route passing stunning scenery as we climb into the Andes. Arriving at Papallacta Volcanic thermal spa. Where you have a delicious massage booked for you and the chance to soak in the hot thermal pools, or take a walk in the stunning surrounds of the spa nestled in the mountains.
Day Nine: January 4th
A lie in and delicious breakfast for some, and for those who are keen early morning hike up the mystical river and then another soak in the hot pools before we travel to our final stop where we will be for the last two nights. Staying in beautiful houses nestled in a sacred valley, eating delicious organic home grown Ecuadorian food, hiking to the waterfalls, riding horses, biking, or just lying on the grass and gazing at the mountains hugging you.
Day Ten: January 5th
More relaxing, walking, reading resting, visiting the local farm, exploring, as you wish. In the afternoon/evening those who wish to can take part in a limpia ceremony with renowned Andean Shaman. It is a beautiful ceremony and a fitting closing to what will have been a great fun adventure!
Day Eleven: January 6th
For those who want to, a morning trip to Otovalo market the second largest indigenous handicraft market in Latin America. So you can support the local artisans and take beautiful things home. A last yummy lunch and then we will transfer to the airport for afternoon and evening flights... or stay on and visit the Galapagos or haciendas.
If you would like more information, or to book your trip please contact us using the form below, we would also be delighted to arrange a call with you if you would like to discuss the trip further.