A short flight takes you over the high Andes and down to the Amazon frontier town of Puerto Francisco de Orellana (called Coca by the locals). From here you travel by motorized canoe approximately two hours down the Napo River, followed by a short walk through a thick palm forest to Sacha Lodge -- your home for the next few nights and base for an incredible Amazon travel adventure!
Days during your stay at Sacha Lodge are filled with discovery. During excursions, visitors are divided into small groups (max 6), each with its own native guide and bilingual naturalist. Native guides carry a lifetime of knowledge about the medicinal and functional uses of rainforest plants. They proudly display the wonders of their home environment, sometimes even offering a tasty treat like the strange lemon tasting ants that coexist in the stems of certain trees. Naturalists, educated in biology and ecology, translate for native guides and complement excursions with explanations of the scientific workings of the rainforest. Sacha Lodge has something for everyone. A favorite activity includes paddling dugout canoes along blackwater creeks and lakes past luxuriant lianas, bromeliads, and enormous palms. Swimming and piranha fishing are also popular (the piranha here are harmless, really!). And for the adventurous Ecuador traveler there are night walks and canoe trips in search of caiman and other nocturnal creatures.
Sacha Lodge offers a number of very unique sites to its visitors. A 130-foot observation tower and a 940-foot canopy walkway both give visitors a chance to get above the rainforest canopy for incredible views of the area. These areas are also great places to observe toucans and other tropical birds and, with luck, spot noisy howler monkeys or a three-toed sloth. Another site is the butterfly house where over 40 local butterfly species are bred. Visitors can see the process of breeding and raising these colorful insects and wander through the "flying room." Finally, there's the Yasuni Parrot Lick. Just a short distance from Sacha Lodge is Ecuador's most famous parrot lick, where visitors can observe dozens of the magnificently colored birds feeding on the clay.
After an early breakfast, head back up the Napo River for the flight back to Quito to complete your Amazon tour. At the airport, you are picked up and transferred to your hotel and have the evening free to enjoy Quito.
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