Kapawi Ecolodge is one of the most remote, ecologically responsible and culturally sensitive ecolodges in the world. A visit to Kapawi helps the Achuar people preserve their nearly two million acres of pristine rainforest in the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon.
Kapawi Ecolodge is an award-winning indigenous community ecotourism enterprise in the Amazon Rainforest of Ecuador that offers conscious and responsible travelers the opportunity to engage in authentic cultural experiences with people of the Ecuadorian Amazon, in an unspoiled rainforest setting, while directly supporting the sustainable development of the Achuar indigenous nation.
This Amazon eco-lodge of Ecuador is 100% owned and operated by the Achuar Indigenous community. All revenue generated from ecotourism goes towards supporting the community, preserving their culture, and protecting the Amazon rainforest.
A primary part of our mission is to invite our guests to reconnect with nature, discover the abundant Amazon Rainforest wildlife, learn new ways of environmental stewardship, and ultimately contribute to the protection and respect of the Amazon Rainforest.
For the past 25 years, the Achuar have worked in partnership with Kapawi Ecolodge's guests to conserve and protect the Sacred Headwaters region of the Ecuadorian Amazon from extraction and deforestation industries.
We welcome guests into each of our handcrafted bungalows, furnished with expert craftsmanship and woodwork. All buildings at Kapawi are designed with traditional Achuar architecture and built by the local community. Our bungalows are either double cabins (2 beds) or triple suits (3 beds).
The founding vision of Kapawi Ecolodge and Reserve is to create a haven of ease, good taste, and understated luxury. Using local materials, skilled Achuar craftsmen have built a series of comfortable cabins in the vernacular style of the rainforest. Each of the guest cabins expresses authentic, traditional Achuar design concepts, and is attractive, spacious, sustainable, well-ventilated, and creature-proof. The cabins feature a screened-in sleeping area and private bath with solar-heated water available on most afternoons (depending on weather). Cabins are fully screened and windows, floors, roofs, and beds each have their own mosquito net.
A raised boardwalk connects all of the guest's cabins and the several large communal buildings at Kapawi, all of which rest on stilts around the edge of an ephemeral lagoon crowded with plant and birdlife.
Kapawi also features its own restaurant, The Amazon Rainforest Restaurant, which serves a variety of international and traditional cuisine to its guests. Meals are prepared by an excellent culinary staff and include classic light cuisine as well as Achuar dishes. The kitchen is able to accommodate vegetarian and most other special dietary requests.
The Gathering Hut
This is our communal area for family-style dinners, happy hour, breakfast, lounging after a day of adventure, reading, a meeting place pre-adventure, group adventure planning and more.
- Before sunrise, we gather around the fire for an Achuar Wayusa tea ceremony to discuss our dreams, detox & re-energize for the day ahead.
- During the day, this is the go-to adventure meeting place to plan the day's events before setting off from the doc below
?- At night, you may find yourself relaxing in hammocks as guests and guides circle around the fire to tell stories of the forest
Around the grounds, you will find many areas, private and communal, for yoga, meditation, writing, reading, working, & wellness workshops.
Out in front of the gathering hut and community hut is Kapawi's conservatory project; the wetland sanctuary. Early in the morning, you will hear Kamen, horned screamers, insects, toads and birds that have established their home here. Take a walk on the doc to listen and learn about the ecosystem of life all around Kapawi.
The Amazon River is one of the largest rivers in the world, and it is the largest drainage system in terms of volume and flow. Kapawi Ecolodge, located in the Sacred Headwaters of the Amazon, allows visitors to spend time in nature exploring 4 different rivers.
Our river explorations take place in the Pastaza, Capahuari, Kusutkau, and Ishpingo Rivers. Through active adventures as well as relaxing explorations, our visitors explore these calm rivers as part of a learning experience about the Amazon, its people, wildlife and biodiversity.
Every river exploration from Kapawi takes our guests through the winding veins of this dreamlike landscape and deep into the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon rainforest. Launch from our dock and into the Capahuari river for magnificent animal & wildlife encounters. You might even spot a river dolphin!
- Paddle a Kayak upriver to a secluded stream or sit back and relax on a sunset ride down the Capahuari.
?- Join a birdwatching boat ride at dawn for a glimpse into the unique biodiversity that is all around Kapawi.
- Once the sun sets, our guests have the opportunity to take a night ride along the moonlit passageways encompassed in the lively nocturnal sounds of crickets, toads, kaymen, and screechers.
To learn about the local culture one must spend time with the people, try the local food, participate in local activities, and appreciate the local customs. Whether you are exploring the forest with a community member, visiting a local family to learn about Achuar culture, gastronomy, medicinal plants, and handicrafts, or even spending a night or two in a community, our experiences are designed to give you a unique and authentic cultural experience.
Some of our most unique experiences at Kapawi are those closely connected with the Achuar People, Achuar culture and the Achuar's unique connection with the spirit of the Amazon Rainforest. Our guests have many opportunities to visit Achuar communities and learn about Achuar life, participate in a ceremony and gain wisdom from community leaders. Guests can spend a day with the Achuar, visit an Achuar house & farm, or go explore the forest with a community member. On special occasions, guests have the opportunity to spend the night at either of the Wayusentsa, Tiinkias or Sharamentsa communities.
Wellness at Kapawi Ecolodge means participating in the active process of becoming aware of yourself and your surroundings. The Amazon Rainforest's biodiversity and natural settings are sources of restoration, well-being, relaxation, and disconnection from the stress of life.
From the architecture and design of our facilities to our wellness programs, we offer an experience focused on providing our guests with a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle. Wellness is more than being free from suffering and illness; it is a dynamic and mindful process of change and growth.
The remote, disconnected & healing nature of the Amazon rainforest is at the center of our health and wellness offerings at Kapawi. Kapawi's natural sanctuary is a transformational location to practice mind and body healing. Guests have access to peaceful & silent communal spaces for yoga & meditation. We host yoga retreats, workshops, and classes at different times throughout the year. Please inquire with us directly to find this specific experience at Kapawi. The Achuar believe in the power of meditation to bring clarity and focus to one's life, they refer to meditation as 'concentration'. We bring this experience to Kapawi through or open and inviting spaces around the lodge for guests to engage in their own meditation practice.
No two Kapawi hikes and treks are the same. That’s because the way you experience Kapawi will be designed to fit your particular interests while connecting you with the rainforest and with the Achuar people.
?Kapawi is located in southeastern Ecuador, in a region of lowland Amazon Rainforest characterized by meandering rivers like the Pastaza, Capahuari, and Kusutkau rivers. Our 20 km. trail system offers a wide array of hikes of varying lengths and levels of difficulty.
Much of the Amazon's beauty is found in the smaller details of Kapawi's natural sanctuary. Join your guide in the opportunity to experience, connect and learn about the biodiversity of the Amazon rainforest on foot. Our guides are all members of the neighboring Achuar communities & have grown up trekking throughout the trail systems surrounding Kapawi. The Achuar people trek for days through the forest to visit other communities, harvesting medicinal plants, or find sacred trees to hold a ceremony.
During your hike, you will learn from the wisdom of the Amazon and Achuar people. The Achuar believe that these disconnected journeys into nature bring clarity and confidence in your vision and focus of your life. The Achuar will teach you how to see the forest as a pharmacy and even provide you with a natural mosquito repellent if you are lucky! As people indigenous to this land and born naturalists, our guides have a sixth-since for the whereabouts of animals, birds & insects at all times. They will look for wildlife encounter opportunities for our guests, like a newly discovered giant otter den, a sloths tree, or a horn screamer's nest. Your guide can also take you to the location of one of our camera traps.
The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.