Yachana Lodge and Center for Geotourism Training is an award-winning, Ecuadorian Amazon ecotourism destination that inspires both thousands of international and national visitors each year.
"Yachana" is an indigenous Kichwa word that means "a place for learning" and the lodge is an integral part of the overall goal of the Yachana Foundation, which is to achieve sustainability through education. As you embark on your journey deep into the Amazon, you can be proud that your visit is helping to address not only education but also conservation and sustainable development in a unique way in this environmentally sensitive region.
Hike in primary and secondary rainforest with one of Yachana's multi-lingual naturalist guides and discover the amazing symbiosis of the animals, birds, trees, plants and insects. Discover how the area's peoples have coexisted with the forest for centuries. Participate in a traditional cleansing ceremony with a local healer, stargaze from the stunning deck and visit the butterfly house. And of course you will have time to relax in your hammock and to swim in the Napo River or sip an exotic drink while watching a spectacular sun setting over the river with the Andes Mountains in the distance. For a more extensive list of activities from Yachana Lodge, please explore the link above.
Amenities at Yachana Lodge
The main common area also serves as the conference room. Located on the second floor, it is equipped with a library, presentation equipment and a balcony with a view overlooking the river. It offers guests solar powered lighting for night reading while relaxing in the common area. Browse the gift shop, stocked with local handicrafts and art as well as a limited supply of personal use products, such as sun block.
Electric energy is provided to the lodge facilities and cabins by solar power. Kerosene lamps are also used in the dining hall and common areas. Water for guests and the lodge comes from a natural spring and is purified for use. Guests will enjoy the convenience of pure water and can be used directly from the taps in the rooms.
Dining at Yachana lodge is provided in the open air thatched roof dining room overlooking the Napo River. The cuisine is freshly prepared using many of the ingredients produced locally in the organic farm. The menu is primarily vegetarian with occasional chicken or fish. Guests will also enjoy the on site bar providing cocktails, beer and wine as well as soft drinks and mineral water.
Guests of Yachana Lodge will find comfortable cabins fitted with every creature comfort. Lighting and electricity are provided by solar power and backup generator. Many cabins overlook the Napo River, perfect to relaxing and listening to the surrounding sounds of the Amazon jungle.
The lodge provides 11 double cabins (housing 2 or 3 people) which offer one double bed and one single bed, a full private bathroom and the balcony overlooking the Napo River. Relax on your balcony in either the hammock or at the table and chairs.
Three family cabins (accommodating 5 people) offer guests one bedroom with a double bed and one bedroom with three single beds. A full private bathroom, separate sitting area and private balcony with a view of the river makes these cabins ideal for families or groups of friends. Relax in the hammocks or in the chairs and view the passing river below.
Yachana Technical High School
The lodge is not only a world-class destination, but also the only lodge in Ecuador managed by students of ecotourism and sustainable development! Yachana Lodge is now a training center fully integrated with the Yachana Technical High School where students get practical, hands-on experience while managing the operation, guided by professional staff acting as their mentors and trainers. During your stay at Yachana visit the high school, an extraordinary and impressive boarding school set up for the indigenous youth of the Amazon and learn about its organic farm. This helps make your stay at Yachana a truly unique experience and one you will not find in other lodges in Ecuador.
Yachana Lodge and Center for Geotourism Training is the only Ecuadorian Amazon lodge that hires virtually all local training staff to work with students along with native, naturalist guides. Both students and their trainers receive extensive and continuous professional coaching and have years of experience in providing a true eco-tourism experience and award-winning service. All guides are from the Amazon region, which means they have an intrinsic understanding of the rainforest. Additionally, they are fluent in English, Spanish, Kichwa and other indigenous languages.
Your professional guide will be by your side as you:
- Hike deep into primary and secondary rainforest to discover wildlife (seven species of toucan, Great Potoos, Long-tailed Potoos and many more animals, birds, insects, snakes and spiders await!)
- Discover native plants and trees including an extraordinary array of medicinal plants and their uses.
- Early morning birdwatching on an island upriver and see over 30 species of birds in an hour including Whitehawk and Blackhawk eagles.
- Explore Yachana's 4,300 acre (1,740 hectare) protected forest and visit our biological research station where scientists and researchers are documenting hundreds of species and studying human impact on the primary forest.
- Go on a night hike and discover another world that comes out only at night including the Tailess Whip Scorpion with its 20 cm long antennae, snakes, frogs and enormous spiders.
- Participate in a traditional cleansing ceremony performed by a local medicine man and test your skills at the indigenous arts of blowguns and spears still used today for hunting.
- Tour the Yachana Technical High School's campus and organic farm and interact with the students - learn about their lives in the rainforest they call home.
- Weave your own basket from plant fibers collected from the surrounding forest.
- Visit the local community, elementary school, and the health clinic founded by Yachana.
- Observe a local family panning for gold - this is a genuine activity practiced by the poorest Amazon families who will genuinely enjoy your company and teaching you what they do.
- Enjoy a refreshing swim in the Napo River, one of the largest tributaries to the Amazon River.
- Float downriver in a canoe and enjoy the sights and sounds of the rainforest.
- Stargaze from the fabulous riverside deck.
- Watch stunningly beautiful sunsets from a high overlook.
- Visit the butterfly house and learn about true symbiosis and the life cycle of a butterfly.
- Enjoy the beautiful botanical gardens that surround the Lodge and identify some of over 90 species of plants with a photo guidebook.