Magic River: Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve 5 Days /4 nights

Magic River

Our commitment to responsible and ecological tourism

Magic River Ecolodge follows rigorous ecological standards for protected areas. Accordingly, all sewage is carefully processed and filtered to avoid contaminating water systems and soils, and the lodge obtains its energy exclusively from clean energy through solar panels.

Each room is equipped with solar powered light and a 110V electric socket. In order to reduce the use of nonrenewable energy resources, we do not use water heating systems and provide cold water only. All of our refuse material is separated and recycled to the greatest extent possible.

We maintain a strong and friendly relationship with members of the indigenous community and support their active involvement in tourism. They receive economic income through their work as paddling aids, motor canoe drivers, kitchen helpers and camp administrators with us.

Paddling from the park entrance to the first camp

Tour start is at 09:30 am in Lago Agrio. Transport from Lago Agrio to the Cuyabeno park entrance (2 hours). From here, we paddle by canoe down the Cuyabeno River to the Tiger Pass campsite (3 hours). Along the way, we have the opportunity to observe the wide range of flora and fauna of the primary forest. The day concludes with a night walk in search of nocturnal creatures. We spend the night camping out in tents.

Paddling on the Cuyabeno River and Laguna Grande Lake

We continue paddling downstream until we reach the entrance to the Laguna Grande Lake (3-4 hours). From this location, a short transfer by motor canoe brings us to the Magic River Ecolodge, followed by lunch at the lodge. Afternoon activities include exploration of the flooded forest (Igapó) of the Laguna Grande Lake by paddling canoe and observation of Macrolobium trees and their various epiphytes. We may take a refreshing dip in the lake and enjoy the sunset over the lake.

Jungle hike

In the morning we take a longer walk on a small path through primary forest (3-4 hours). Our guide will provide information about this amazing ecosystem and explain different types of plants. Later, we head back to the camp for a rest. Evening plans feature an excursion on the Cuyabeno River to spot wildlife and enjoy the surroundings. After dark, we take a night excursion in search of caimans.

Visit to the indigenous community Tarapuya

Today we visit Puerto Victoriano, an indigenous community of the Siona. We paddle downstream by canoe on the Cuyabeno River (2.5 hours) and continue with a short motor canoe ride until we reach the community. Here we get an insight into the Siona culture and their current lifestyle. We will help make bread from manioc root in a family home. A visit with the local shaman will give us the opportunity to learn about ancient healing techniques (only if the shaman is available). During the late afternoon, we take the motor canoe back to our lodge. If there is time, we visit the Laguna Grande Lake once again.

Early morning bird watching and return to Lago Agrio

Before sunrise we head out in the canoes, paddling along the Cuyabeno River to spot birds. We return to the camp for breakfast. During the morning, we make our return trip in the motor canoe. Once again, we have chances to spot wildlife on our way to the Cuyabeno River Bridge. Our private transport will be waiting to take us back to Lago Agrio, where we arrive at 3:00 pm.

Important notes:

  • Single, double and triple rooms with private bathrooms, comfortable mattresses and mosquito nets
  • Biodegradable soap and shampoo
  • Spacious dining area
  • Hammocks in different chill out areas
  • Electricity from solar panels (light and battery recharging for cameras)
  • Delicious Ecuadorian and international cuisine (vegetarian food upon request)
  • For groups maximum group size 10 / minimum group size 4
  • Prepare for your trip to the Amazon:
    • Climate

The climate is tropical and humid due to our location at the equator in the Amazon Lowland. The annual temperature averages 25°C (77°F) with a daily minimum temperature of 20°C (68°F) and a maximum temperature of 30°C (86°F). Night temperatures are pleasant and fresh at around 18°C (64.4°F). Humidity ranges from 80 to 100% with an average of 3000 mm of rainfall a year. The area experiences a drier season from December to March and a wetter season from April to July.

  • Health precautions

We recommend the basic vaccinations such as tetanus and hepatitis A. Cholera, typhoid and yellow fever are unknown in the region. Malaria prevention is a matter of choice. In this specific area, there is a moderate incidence of malaria. While the more serious form of “malaria tropicana” is very uncommon, all other strains of malaria do exist and are treatable with chloroquin or equivalents.

  • Clothing

We suggest that you wear light cotton, linen or silk clothes. Normally, you just need shorts and a shirt during the day and long trousers and a long-sleeved shirt (which also provide very good mosquito protection) for the late evenings. Nights can be cool, especially when it rains, so you should bring a warm sweater. For sun protection, you will need a hat, sunglasses and a high protection sunscreen. Sandals for the canoe and tennis shoes are perfect for the lodge area and at night. You will not need trekking boots. Don’t forget to bring your swimwear.

Canoe motor / Standard room $330.00

  • Meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
  • Drinks (water, café, tea, hot chocolate, juice)
  • Accommodation with private bathroom (matrimonial, double, triple and multiple rooms)
  • Full transportation from Lago Agrio to Caiman Lodge and back to Lago Agrio
  • Amazon naturalist guide in English
  • Rain ponchos and boots for the duration of your Amazon Jungle Tour
  • Breakfast on first day and dinner on last day
  • Transfer Quito-Lago Agrio-Quito
  • Accommodation in Lago Agrio
  • Alcoholic drinks
  • Indigenous community fee $6.00 per person
  • Tips
  • Other not specified
  • Laundry
  • Travel Insurance
  • Several T-shirts
  • Long-sleeved shirts for mosquito protection
  • Shorts and long trousers for jungle hikes
  • 1 warm sweater or jacket for colder rainy days
  • 1 pair of tennis shoes, 1 pair of sandals
  • Swimwear
  • Insect repellent
  • 1 flashlight per person and some spare batteries
  • Sun protection (hat, glasses, sunscreen)
  • 1 day backpack
  • Small amounts of money for handicraft purchases
  • Passport
  • Camera, binoculars

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