Since its opening in 1993, the Kapawi Eco-Lodge reflects the true essence of ecotourism- an immersion into the abundant wildlife and rich biodiversity of the jungle while practicing ecological sensitivity. This classic Amazon Lodge is the perfect place for a vintage Amazon rainforest tour. Located deep within the Achuar territory, the Kapawi Eco-Lodge includes 20 double cabins with private bathrooms, a balcony with hammocks, as well as ample social areas including a bar/restaurant, library, lounge and a souvenir shop. This lodge has set the standard for comfort and relaxation that make for an ideal and unforgettable Ecuador Rainforest trip, all while learning from and immersing yourself with the local members of the Achuar community. Ask our travel advisers about the best time of the year to visit Kapawi Lodge and for our discounts and promotions which are often available.
KAPAWI LODGEACCOMMODATION Junior Suite Rooms: 20 Comfortable rooms allowing double and triple accommodation under request all offer balconies with hammocks Master Suite Rooms: 1 Luxurious suite with incredible views of the surrounding forest
LODGE Local Community: Managed and operated by the Achuar Indigenous community Activities: Wide range of activities including trekking, kayaking, canoe riding, spending time with the community and others Pristine Surroundings: Secluded territory located in primary protected Rainforest and home to hundreds of species of wildlife
Bar and Lounge
Local and International Food
Safety Deposit box in each room
Screened windows and mosquito nets
Ceiling Fans in all rooms
Inclusions & Exclusions
Getting to Kapawi lodge is an adventure. The trip starts from Quito traveling by car through the Avenue of the Volcanoes and winding its way to the frontier town of Shell, formally used by the oil company as a base. From Shell there is a 50-minute flight to Achaur territory, where the journey continues by canoe to the lodge. The award-winning, community-driven lodge is a ten-day walk to the nearest town, and transportation and specific travel days reflect this.
Kapawi Lodge offers itineraries for 4 and 5 days
Kapawi Lodge 4 Day Tour
On day one the adventure begins with a transfer to the frontier town of Shell. From there you fly to the Achuar amazon territory, and transfer to a canoe for the rest of the journey to the lodge. Once situated and ready to go, the afternoon is spent hiking on a sandy beach of the Pastaza River. It’s here that your community guide introduces you to the jungle forest and its creatures.
The Achuar people have deep ties to the jungle, depending on it for their livelihood and building the Kapawi Lodge out of the materials found in the forest. It’s an intriguing culture, and one that is even more fascinating when in the midst of the place that the Achuar call home.
After the day’s activities, you will return to the Amazon eco lodge for a filling meal and your first night in the jungle with its creatures calling in the distance.
After an early breakfast at the luxury eco lodge, day two starts with a two-hour hike to an Achuar clay lick, where the wee hours of the morning are the best time to see the birds of the jungle. Some species that you can see include the orange-winged parrot, the golden-plumed parakeet, the yellow-crowned amazon, the cobalt-winged parakeet, and the military macaw. At the clay lick when feeding, these birds appear in a blur of frenzied color and movement that leaves travelers grasping for their cameras. After lunch, it’s time to continue your Amazon rainforest tour by boat on a journey that explores the tributaries and lagoons of the territory. One of the river creatures that surfaces and quickly submerges again is the pink river dolphin, a one-of-a-kind sighting in the jungle. The eagle-eyed guides of the Achuar community lodge are swift to point out the hidden-in-plain sight creatures in the trees, including monkeys and sloths.
After another early morning breakfast in the friendly confines of the Kapawi lodge, day three is spent discovering the ways of the Achuar culture. A forest walk is the first activity, where the roots of the luxury eco lodge come into focus. The guides of the Amazon eco lodge show you firsthand how the use of palm leaves in the construction of their retreat is a part of the techniques that the people have used for centuries, and explain the importance of the various insects of the jungle have within the larger picture of the delicate balance of the forest.
The medicinal uses of the plants of the jungle are also explained as your guide points out the variety of species growing at every bend and corner of the trail. After lunch, you can learn about the traditional methods of fishing-trying your hand at catching piranha-or jump in and learn the crafts of the Achuar people-using seeds and nuts to craft jewelry and keepsakes.
After an early morning of birdwatching close to Kapawi lodge, one last breakfast is served before packing and preparing for the return journey to Quito. The members of the Achuar community lodge say goodbye with a demonstration of the traditional hunting methods of the jungle. This is often one of the highlights for those who make the trek to the remote region of the Amazon.
The Achuar are expert hunters, relying on their skill to feed their villages and families. Nothing is wasted, and the community has a deep respect for the jungle and its creatures. Guests have the chance to practice their skills using a blowgun before they continue on their journey. After three days exploring and learning about the way of life in the jungle, it is a fitting end to an Amazon forest tour that opens up a new appreciation of nature, and the people and creatures that call it home.
Kapawi Lodge 5 Day Tour
Pick up in Quito at 05:30 am. Once in Shell you will be welcomed by our Achuar representatives and will be assisted onto small planes. The 45-minute flight from Shell will pass over unbroken pristine rainforest, arriving at the airstrip of the local Achuar community. There you will be welcomed by Kapawi guides, who will escort you on the final leg of your journey, a beautiful 30-minute canoe ride into the majesty and tranquility of the Amazon rainforest. Lunch at Kapawi Ecolodge. We will have a quiet activity where guests can walk along one of the Pastaza River beaches. Here, our guides will give guests an introductory orientation session with information about the Ecuadorian rainforest tour ahead and about the Achuar culture, while enjoying a beautiful sunset. Back for dinner.
Early morning our guides will escort you on a 30 minute motorboat ride to reach one of the best natural attractions, the Claylick, where we will see different species of macaws, and parrots such as the Cobalt-Winged Parakeet. After breakfast, we can take a walk, approximately 2 hours with stops, where they will learn about medicinal plants of the area and tropical forest ecology. Lunch at Kapawi Ecolodge.
Time to rest. In the Afternoon, we will be able to explore, via kayak, the Kapawari River and its connecting lagoons, while looking at the local Amazon rainforest wildlife such as the pink river dolphin. As the river is quite calm, swimming is completely safe. After dinner, we can partake in a spectacular night walk, observing the many different kinds of insects and amphibians that are found around the Amazon eco-lodge.
We will have the opportunity to find and spot a great variety of birds that the Amazon Rainforest of Ecuador offers. After breakfast, we will take a walk, approximately 2 hours with stops, where they will learn about the benefits and uses of the palms to the Achuar people and the important ecological role played by insects and animals in the forest.
In the afternoon, we can fish for piranha or catfish, or hear legends in hammock house, traditional greetings around a campfire. We will also be able to learn the art of Achuar face painting and how it relates to their different activities. (Camping Itinerary) At night after dinner, we will explore the Kapawari River in search of nocturnal rainforest wildlife.
This day we could go to Bird watching upstairs Kapawari River, or to go to the Clay lick. Breakfast and departure for a full day activities, our guides will escort us along the Pitzacocha trail and Lagoon. During this time, we will learn about the forest and its benefits for the Achuar native people. Our guides will also teach us about Achuar hunting techniques and ARUTAM the spirit of the forest. Picnic lunch in the forest. After lunch we will visit the Achuar community.
This is one of our most popular activities offered in Kapawi Amazon lodge, because of the significant cultural contribution to the Achuar people. We will visit the community and have the chance to buy souvenirs. Return to the lodge for dinner.
Early morning our guides will bring us to specific points near the eco lodge, in order to locate various species of birds. Breakfast and preparation for departure. In the last few hours before departure from the Achuar territory, we can participate in a blowgun contest to demonstrate who the best hunter among the guides and guests is. We will be leaving the Amazon lodge with a flight back to Shell where a box lunch will be provided. Return to Quito along the valley of the waterfalls route where Andean and jungle landscapes will say good bye.
Kapawi Lodge Main Activities
Bird Watching at Kapawi lodge is an everyday activity. There are around 600 species of birds in the jungle and at every bend in the trail or river, colorful macaws, egrats, tanagers, and herons graceful fly overhead or perch on branches nearby. The trails around the luxury eco lodge are resplendent with opportunities to spot these exotic creatures, and the sharp eyes of guides during early morning excursions at feeding time show you a myriad of different species hidden in the trees. Trips to Amazon eco lodge’s clay lick offer another level of birdwatching. Hundreds of exotic macaws, parakeets, and parrots flock to the site in a frenzy of color and movement - a great opportunity for photographers and bird lover’s alike.
Discovering the Culture of the Achuar
The Achuar people have lived in the Amazon Basin for centuries hunting, foraging, and using the riches of the jungle to sustain a way of life that is unheard of in the modern world. The remote location of Kapawi Lodge puts you deep in a territory that remains relatively untouched by the fast-paced world at large. This gives you an opportunity to see the balance between nature and the people who live there. During your time at the community eco lodge, guided hikes into the forest reveal the plants that the Achuar people use for healing, the foliage that serves in construction, and the seeds that they use in their crafts. It opens up another world and way of life-bringing pause upon returning to life outside the jungle.
The Pastaza River, its tributaries and the lagoons that span the area around the Kapawi Lodge are peaceful getaways leading to adventures in the jungle. Turtles rest on the banks during the day, the red eyes of caiman reflect off of flashlights from canoes at night, and pink river dolphins breach the surface of the water on journeys after mornings of birdwatching. The excursions offer a chance to experience the jungle as the Achuar people have for centuries. Expert guides take you into their backyard, pointing out the creatures, while explaining the threats to the environment that the luxury eco lodge and the people behind it are pro-actively fighting by opening their doors to the outside world.
On land, like on the water, there is a whole new world to discover during your stay at the community lodge. Birds fly overhead, while the jungle canopy shields the incredible biodiversity below. Trails lead to clay licks where parrots flock in numbers, and guides show you the wonders of the forest from a lifetime of experience living within its midst. The expertise of the guides at Kapawi lodge adds to the one-of-a-kind nature of the experience. The community members have a deep respect and love of the forest. Their passion for the natural riches and positive activism through eco-tourism comes alive on hikes into the thick foliage that surrounds the carefully planned trails. These excursions are a lesson in the resilience of both the forest and its creatures, despite the trials that they endure from the outside world.
Kapawi Lodge Travel Tips and Resources
Read our Amazon Rainforest Trip Planning Guides for tips and information on the Ecuadorian Amazon Basin and on Kapawi Lodge
Contact us for discounted prices on Kapawi Lodge Bookings
4 Days 5 Days
Double Rooms Per Person (2023 Prices)
Double Rooms Per Person (2023 Prices)
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