Owned and operated by the local Anangu Kichwa Amerindian Community, Napo Wildlife Centre is an upmarket lodge located within a pristine 52,000-acre private terra firma rainforest reserve forming part of the Yasuni National Park, the largest in Ecuador and comprising a huge tract of pristine Amazonian rainforest.
The lodge overlooks the beautiful Anangucocha Lake, which is home to a resident population of giant river otters, capybara, large numbers of water birds and the black caiman, an endangered relative of the alligator which reaches 4 metres in length. The surrounding primary rainforest is home to 11 species of monkey (including red howler, spider, woolly, squirrel, monk saki and golden mantle tamarin), sloths and a multitude of insects, reptiles and amphibians. Spectacular but more elusive residents include anaconda, jaguar, puma, tapir, giant anteater and giant armadillo.
Over 560 species of birds have so far been recorded at the lodge with highlights including macaws (scarlet, blue and yellow, red and green, chestnut-fronted, red bellied), mixed feeding flocks of antbirds, toucans, manakins (six species), hummingbirds, agami herons, five species of kingfisher and occasionally harpy and crested eagles.
A particular highlight at Napo Wildlife Centre is their pair of parrot clay licks which attract large numbers of parrots, parakeets and occasionally macaws to digest kaolin to counteract toxins in their diet. There is also a large canopy platform offering spectacular views over the rainforest where you have a good chance of seeing monkeys, sloths, canopy birds and rainforest raptors.
Each of the 16 bright and airy detached cabanas has a spacious bedroom, private bathroom, hot water shower and private porch with seating and good views over the lake and surrounding forest. There is also a good restaurant, bar and well-stocked library.
Your stay here includes a full programme of rainforest walks, canoe trips, visits to the clay licks and canopy platform – all in the company of the lodge’s expert naturalist guides and local spotters. Visits to the local community are also possible.
Restaurant, bar, well-stocked library, 24-hour electricity, laundry service, 120-foot canopy tower, internet service and kiosk.
Two parrot and parakeet clay licks, 565 bird species, 11 species of monkeys including the endemic golden-mantled tamarin, two groups of giant otters and other large mammals such as white-lipped peccaries and Brazilian tapir, and black caiman.
Visits to the local Añangu Kichwa community.
Number of rooms
A tip for the photographer: As many river trips are taken in a dugout canoe, use of a tripod can be difficult: therefore, it is recommended to take a monopod.
If you have any queries about this accommodation please feel free to call me directly on +44 (0)1803 866965 or...