COFAN LODGE & CUYABENO LOOP

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EXCLUSIVE NEW YEAR's EVE OFFER:

SPEND NEW YEARS EVE WITH THE COFANS

The Cofans spend their new year's eve with festivities and invite a small number of visitors to celebrate with them. This is a unique opportunity to party with the Cofans, in the Cofan way. No performance FOR tourists; The Cofans celebrate New Year's Eve WITH their visiting guests.

 

Limited space available and shared bedrooms. Will you be among the few privileged guests? Hurry: space is filling up fast. If you want to know more: niks

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS [REVIEW]

  1. 5 DAYS' CUYABENO LOOP;

  2. 4 DAYS' STANDARD COFAN LODGE TOUR;

  3. 7 DAYS' LAGARTO COCHA TOUR;

  4. 4 DAYS CUYABENO LAKE TOUR;

  5. 5 DAYS CUYABENO LAKE TOUR;

  6. PRIVATE TRANSPORTATION QUITO LAGOAGRIO.

Are these Cuyabeno River Tours really the best Amazon tours in Ecuador to see wildlife?

WELL YES! This is why...

When one walks in the forest, the animals above you in the the crowns are difficult to observe. Looking up you hardly see anything. The contrast between the sky and the leaves is so overwhelming, that they appear almost black.  The light breaks through the canopy though, along narrow rivers. So, from the water you see the birds, flowers and mammals much better, as they frolick through the shrubs and lower trees along the shores.

fSo what makes Cuyabeno so special...

  • It's the only Amazon park in all Amazon-Andean countries with wide flat plains. Slow-flowing narrow creeks, rivers and many lakes can only develop in flat lowlands; not in hilly terrain. This makes Cuyabeno so unique!

  • In the dryer sections, one gets to see the terrestrial animals and birds. With so much water, one also gets to see water animals like: Dolphins, Manatees, Capybaras, Cayman, Ducks, Cormorants, Herons, etc.

  • Spotting wildlife from a canoe is much easier than when walking on a trail. You have your birding and wildlife books, your binoculars and your camera all close at hand.

 

But there is more...

  • Getting from Lagoagrio to Cuyabeno is (mostly) over an asphalt road. Distances over water are much shorter than to other reserves, like Yasuní National Park;

  •  Our programs are organized by or in collaboration with small Indian tribes, the Cofans and Sionas;

  • All programs are so child friendly, I took my grandchildren (3,5 & 6) there. Wao, did they love it!

 

5 DAYS' CUYABENO LOOP

CUYABENO RIVER TOUR: A 200 KM Cuyabeno odyssey takes you on Lake Cuyabeno and the Aguarico and Zabano Rivers, while sleeping in a Cofan village as well as the famous Cuyabeno Lodge.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve with Cuyabeno Loop route.

The first 2,5 days are shared in the Cofan area of the Aguarico and Zábalo Rivers of the Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve.  On  the third day, the Cuyabeno Loop continues to the Cuyabeno Lake region of the park, while the standard program remains in the Zábalo region.

 

Cuyabeno River Tour, day 1

Our transport meets you in Lagoagrio to take you in about 1 hour 30 minutes to the the canoe landing location Nuevo Unión, on the Aguarico River.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Aguarico River landscape.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cofan tourist canoe.

Cuyabeno Loop route takes you on a 200km odyssey through the Western Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve.

The tourist canoe of the Cofan Lodge.

 

Upon arrival in Zábalo, you will be shown around in the village and taken to your cabins to freshen up and rest, as it has been a long day since your departure from Quito.

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cofan Lodge Restaurant.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cofan Lodge Cabin.

The restaurant of our Cofan Lodge.

One of the cabins of the Cofan Lodge.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Resting in hammocks at the Cuyabeno Lodge when visiting the Amazon in Ecuador.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Zábalo village

Relaxing in one of the fun hammocks in our restaurant.

A view of our Zábalo village.

 

In the evening, you will be taken on a night excursion to discover the critters of the night.

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Tree Frog of the Amazon Jungle seen on a night excursion when visiting the Amazon in Ecuador.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Nocturnal amazon animal found on an Amazon visit in Ecuador

Tree frogs are everywhere, but it is a bit difficult to spot them. The moment you think you finally have one in your camera, they leap away to never be found again smiley. On a rare occasion, with lots of luck you may catch the green eyes of a wandering Ocelot Cat in the beam of your flash light.

 

Cuyabeno River Tour, day 2

Early in the morning, we take on one of the few Ecuadorian black water rivers, where the clear water provides an ideal conditions for Giant Otters. Black water gets it color from decaying leaves fallen in the forested lowlands and swamps, while there are little or no sediments. There is also a vivid population of Scarlet Macaws as well as a great variety of tropical birds and monkeys.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cuyabeno Lodge welcome sign welcoming you on your Ecuador Amazon visit6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Black water of the Zabalo River mixes with white water of the Acuarico.

The Zabalo River is one of the few clear black water rivers in the Amazon of Ecuador.

The clear black water of the Zábalo river mixes with the sediment loaded water of the Aguarico River.

 

Cuyabeno River Tour, day 4

The day starts out with a discovery of the Cofan ways. You will be taught how to use a blowgun, and

get to see the traditional Cofan dresses.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cuyabeno Entry station for Amazon Visitors in Ecuador6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Children of visitors and of the village with the Cofan Shaman.

Learning how to shoot with a blowgun.

The shaman with some of the children of the village and of visitors.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Zábalo vegetable garden.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Turtles in the turtle captive breeding coral.

The traditional Cofan vegetable garden produces a part of your food.

The Cofan turtle breeding program has restored the turtle population in the Zábalo River.

 

After breakfast, we take you to the mouth of the Cuyabeno River, where usually some river dolphins hang out. From there you will be taken to the Canopy tower, to have an impression of the natural canopy.

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: The mouth of the Cuyabeno River.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: The Cuyabeno Canopy Tower.

The Cuyabeno River Mouth is frequented by Amazon Dolphins

The highest canopy tower in Cuyabeno takes you all the way into the crown of a gigantic tree.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Canopy tower platform.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: view from the canopy tower.

Admiring the view from the canopy tower platform.

The tree canopies are where the Amazon jungle has most of its species.

After the visit to the canopy tower, the programs split into:

  • Cofan standard program and the

  • Cuyabeno Loop

4 DAYS' STANDARD COFAN LODGE TOUR

The Cofan standard program will take you on a fabulous excursion into the Amazon jungle, after which it takes you back to the Cofan Lodge.

 

Day 4

On day four, the standard program takes you back on a ride on the Aguarico River, and from there back to Quito.

 

5 DAYS' CUYABENO LOOP CONTINUATION

The Cuyabeno loop continues its journey upstream to the Cuyabeno Lake, from where the program will be taken over by one of the lodges at the Cuyabeno Lake, of which the most famous is the Cuyabeno Lodge.

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Port of Entry for a visit of the Amazon in Ecuador at Cuyabeno6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Macrolobium trees at Lake Cuyabeno.

Continuing the journey upstream the Cuyabeno River.

The Macrolobium trees at the border of the Cuyabeno lake are like giant Bonsai trees and full of epiphytes.

 

Upon arrival at the lodge, you can take a hot shower and rest up a bit and take a swim in the lake at sunset.

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Swimming at the Cuyabeno Lake during your Amazon visit in Ecuador6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Make great friends at the Cuyabeno Lodge when visiting the Amazon in Ecuador.

A swim at the lake is always wonderfully refreshing and a lot of fun.

Dinner in the restaurant of the Cuyabeno Lodge.

 

At night you can take an night excursion at the lake to look for the orange eyes of caymen and other nocturnal animals that hide in the Macrolobium swamps.

 

Cuyabeno River Tour, day 4

After a well-deserved night's rest, you will explore the Cuyabeno Lake and its surrounding Macrolobium swamps.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Amazon Manatee at Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Amazon dolphin on an Amazon visit in Ecuador

Most of the time you will be able to spot a Amazon Dolphins (of course no we can never guarantee this) or maybe if you are very lucky, even a Manatee.

 

 

Blue and Yellow Macaws fly noisily across the Cuyabeno Lake, while Hoatzins whisper their hoarse sounds as they scope the Macrolobium trees for food. You may also hear the mysterious swelling sound of the Howler Monkeys or see a troop of squirrel monkeys bouncing through the treetops. In fact, 10 species of monkeys have been recorded in the reserve.

Bird and wildlife watching

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Amazon visitors enjoy orchid at Cuyabeno, Ecuador6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Cactus flower at the Amazon in Ecuador.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Amazon rainforest plants include the Orchids growing in Cuyabeno. 6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Heliconia in the Amazon tropical Rainforest seen when visiting the Amazon in Ecuador.

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Blue and Yellow macaws can be frequently seen when visiting the Amazon in Ecuador.6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Black Mantled Tamarins at Cuyabeno Lodge, your comfortable hotel when visiting the Amazon in Ecuador.

Blue and yellow Macaws are fairly common in Cuyabeno.

Black-Mantled Tamarins live in groups of up to 200.

 

6 BEST CUYABENO RIVER TOURS: Swamp trees, Macrolobiums, at Cuyabeno are frequently seen on Amazon visits in Ecuador.Epiphytes in the Amazon Jungle

 

Cuyabeno River Tour, day 5

On day five, you will experience the feel of so many of our visitors: "It all went by too quickly". Maybe you will become one of our frequent visitors that keep coming back for a special program of one or two weeks. Anyway, you will have to leave in the morning to get back on time to catch the plane or  bus in Lagoagrio. You will ride the canoe up the Cuyabeno River to the main entrance of the park, the "Cuyabeno Bridge", where your transport will be waiting for you to bring you to the airport or to the bus station to take you on your trip back to Quito.

 

CUYABENO, GETTING THERE AND BACK

There are 3 options to travel to the Amazon Lowlands:

  • Take the night bus from Quito to Lagoagrio (usually leaves at 11 at night) from the "Terminal Norte" in Quito and arrive in Lagoagrio at dawn, which takes about 7 hours. It costs about $ 25 for the round trip and you have to leave from your hotel in Quito to the terminal  an hour before departure (by taxi). Alternatively, you can take a day bus, but then you will have to spend the night in Lagoagrio. We will pick you up in Lagoagrio in combination with arriving passengers by plane, departing generally at 10:30 (depending on the arrival of the plane), to Nuevo Unión (2 hours), where we embark in our canoe at about 12:30. Between your departure from your hotel at night at 10 at night until boarding the our motorized canoe, will be more or less 15 hours. The same applies for the Lake Cuyabeno accommodations which pass through the main park entrance on the Cuyabeno River.

  • Fly with Tame Quito - Lagoagrio. You can book your ticket at https://www.tame.com.ec, which costs about $ 150 round trip, but additionally you have to consider the cost of a taxi that costs 2X25; Then it actually costs $ 200. Your flight usually leaves at 9 in the morning, and takes 30 minutes to arrive. As many times the flight is delayed, count on arriving around 10, and after getting your luggage, it will be 10:30. We'll pick you up at the airport. From there it takes two hours to arrive in Nuevo Union, where we leave in our canoe at 12:30. Thus flying takes a total of 5 - 6 hours from your hotel until you can embark on the Rio Aguarico. The same applies for the Lake Cuyabeno accommodations which pass through the main park entrance on the Cuyabeno River.

  • Take our Private Trans-Andean Transportation to the Aguarico or Cuyabeno River, of which you can read the details below. We will pick you up at your hotel early in the morning and take to the Aguarico River in about 8 - 9 hours depending how much time we spend on the way at the overlooks into the Cayambe _ Coca Ecological. The same applies for the Lake Cuyabeno accommodations which pass through the main park entrance on the Cuyabeno River.

CUYABENO WILDLIFE RESERVE MAP: Lake area tours. CUYABENO WILDLIFE RESERVE MAP: Cuyabeno Loop.
CUYABENO WILDLIFE RESERVE MAP: Lagarto Cocha Expedition.

Routes from the Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve programss of Parks and Tribes / Cofan Lodge:

  • Left above: Cuyabeno Lake Area;

  • Right above: Cuyabeno Loop;

  • Left: Lagarto Coche Expedition with the Cuyabeno Lake area as an additional option.

 

PRIVATE TRANSPORTATION QUITO - AGUARICO

 

some of the highest rainforests in the world along Lake Papallacta.The San Rafael waterfall surrounded by virgin cloud forest is the most beautiful waterfall of the country.

Near the mountain pass you pass by beautiful paramos and some of the highest rainforests in the world along Lake Papallacta.

The San Rafael waterfall surrounded by virgin cloud forest is the most beautiful waterfall of the country.

 

Bordering Lake Papallacta is the Jamanco SpaThe Reventador is Ecuador's most active volcano

Bordering Lake Papallacta is the Jamanco Spa with great mineral water without prior filtration as done in the Papallacta resorts. As a result, the mineral quality is supposed to be better, while resort prices are a fraction of the spas in Papallacta.

The Reventador is Ecuador's most active volcano and frequently runs of down-pouring can be seen glowing in the night.

  • It is possible to arrange for spending the night at either a Papallacta (costly) or Jamanco (friendly and much more economical) Spa, but then another day is needed.

  • Many passengers who take the private transportation, chose to fly back or visa versa.

Lagoagrio airport.the Cayambe exactly on the equator

Arrival at the airport of oil-boom town Lagoagrio.

On a clear day you can see the Cayambe exactly on the equator, as you fly around it. It is the only major volcano as well as the only glacier in the world precisely on the equator. On the way in, chose a window on the right and on the way back on the left of the plane.

 

WHAT IS INCLUDED?

Amazon Tours

All Amazon programs include all meals, and fruit juices served with the meals. Our restaurants serve a mix of international cuisine and occasionally, the Cofan Lodge offers  a sample meal of traditional Cofan dishes. Meals include coffee, tea and bottled water, while additional bottled drinks and alcoholic beverages can be bought.

Transportation between Lagoagrio and the access rivers.

Transportation between Lagoagrio and the river(s).

 

National Parks Tours

  1. All hotels and lodges;

  2. Transportation: All ground transportation on the National Parks tours;

  3. In-country flights where included in the national parks tour program, but NOT to/fro Galapagos and Lagoagrio;

  4. An English speaking naturalist guide. A German or French speaking guide may also be available, but can't be guaranteed.

  5. All entry fees.

COMBI-DISCOUNTS

Depending on the program you selected, we always try to give you a discount on combined modules. Groups above 4 passengers will receive discounts, depending on group size.

 

HOW TO BOOK A TOUR?

Our programs are rather customized and we try to accommodate the travel needs of our customers. To avoid misunderstandings, we don't offer a prepaid travel option. Just send an email to or contact us through our contact data below. 

 

From Abroad:

Sending money from abroad is rather costly and we try to minimize money going to bank transfers. Once your schedule has been worked out, we kindly request you to make a reservation guarantee transfer of only $100 by Western Union or Moneygram. The balance you pay in CASH in Quito upon arrival (we don't take credit cards!) This way you don't lose a lot of money sending money. The $100 is NOT recoverable upon cancelation.

 

Why we don't accept credit cards in Ecuador either? The credit card services charge 7%! We would have to charge you for that, making your trip more expensive. We do everything to make your trip as cost effective as possible.

 

Already in Ecuador?

You can pay in our office mentioned below. We apply a cancelation fee of $100.

 

What is essential to bring?

For this question we link to our special vacation packing list.

 

2017 COFAN LODGE / PARKS AND TRIBES PRICES

 

NATIONAL PARKS TOUR PROGRAM

DURATION STAY

Prices in US$

OPTION A: Complete national Parks Tour (10 days) $1999
OPTION B: After Machalilla return to Quito (6 days) $1349
OPTION C: After Machalilla return to Quito (6 days) via Chimborazo Wildlife Reserve (7 days) $1399
OPTION D: Start and finish in Guayaquil (5 days) $1149
OPTION E: Start in Cuenca and Finish in Guayaquil (5 days) $1149

Prices are based on a minimum of 2 passengers.

 

COFAN LODGE STANDARD PROGRAM

DURATION STAY

Prices in US$

4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS  
Standard room

$ 540

Prices are based on a minimum of 2 passengers.

 

CUYABENO LOOP

DURATION STAY

Prices in US$

5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS  
Standard room at the Cuyabeno Lodge part (nights 3 &4) $ 850
Standard room in the Cofan Lodge (nights 1 & 2) and Deluxe room at the Cuyabeno Lodge (nights 3 & 4) $ 910

Prices are based on a minimum of 2 passengers.

 

LAGARTO COCHA EXPEDITION

DURATION STAY

Prices in US$

7 DAYS / 6 NIGHTS

$ 1080

Extension Cuyabeno Lake from where returning to Lagoagrio.

$ 1340

Prices are based on a minimum of 2 passengers.

 

CUYABENO LODGE PROGRAM

DURATION STAY

Prices in US$

4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS  
Standard room $ 380
Deluxe room $ 440
5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS $ 325
Shared budget room $ 475
Standard room  
Deluxe room $ 550
Single occupancy $100

Individual bookings are WELCOME

 

QUITO - LAGOAGRIO (or visa versa)

PRIVATE TRANSPORTATION

 

Prices in US$

One way per party price

$ 300

Group Price for parties of 2 - 7 (minivan) who share the costs.

 

GALAPAGOS TOURS

GALAPAGOS TOURS

For island hopping starting at  (Read details)

$520

Individual bookings are WELCOME

 

LIMA CUSCO MACHU PICCHU
DURATION STAY

Prices in US$

LIMA - CUSCO MODULE (Read detailes)

$1149

Prices are based on a minimum of 2 passengers.

 

Cuyabeno River Tour

The COFAN LODGE and PARKS & TRIBES have their sales office in:

Calle Mariano Cardenal N74-153 y Joaquín Mancheno; Carcelen Alto District (Barrio)

Download:Cofan Lodge brochure.

Phone:

(++593) (0)(2) 252 7314

Email:

niks

Talk or chat with us on Skype:

ecotravelworldwide

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