The Tapir Lodge was built in 1996 in partnership with the family members of the Siona community. Their philosophy is to respect the ecosystem and maintain its natural course. They are passionate about the environment and therefore we seek to cause minimal disturbance in the area. The Lodge offers state of the art facilities. Their mission is to provide our customers not only with an excellent customer service but also to make their stay as much enjoyable as possible, thus offering their guests alternative accommodation styles. For instance; the main tower “Piranha” accommodates 8 guests in total, however depending on the needs of the customer the rooms can be used as single or double rooms. The second tower “manglar” accommodates up to 12 guests. Rooms can be used as suites, triple, quadruple or quintuple. The tapir is a pioneer in the area of alternative energies and so they have implemented an excellent way of creating their own energy without upsetting the environment. They use solar panels for the production of electricity; this energy is harvested and stored and with the help of an inverter it produces a total of 110-115 V AC. Giving their guests unlimited access to electricity.
All the rooms are equipped with mosquito nets and reading lamps. Electrical sockets are mainly used to recharge your camera batteries. Feel free to recharge your Netbooks, iPods and other small appliances. Hairdryers are prohibited due to their high consumption of energy. There is no WiFi reception.
Your Cuyabeno National Park rainforest adventure starts in Lago Agrio, where our driver will pick you up. A fascinating drive will take you to the northeastern part of the Sucumbios province, while we pass by beautiful rivers and small villages going deeper into the rainforest. When you arrive at “El Puente” (the bridge), we will have lunch before we continue our way to Tapir lodge crossing down the river by canoe. This part of the trip will give you a taste of the flora and fauna that Cuyabeno has to offer. We will ensure that you and your luggage stay dry during the river ride. After welcoming you to the Tapir Lodge, you will have time to get settled in your room. Then you will join us for a wonderful dinner, an opportunity to get acquainted with your travel companions. After dinner, your guide will give you an introduction to the Tapir Lodge, the Cuyabeno National Park and the fascinating experiences planned for your rainforest adventure.
In the morning, after a delicious breakfast at the lodge, we will canoe upstream to explore the unique ecosystem of Laguna Grande. While navigating in the Igapo (flooded forest), you will see (Macrolobium), ancient majestic mimosa trees, which create the ideal habitat for epiphyte plants, such as bromeliads, orchids, ferns and cacti. We will continue the adventure to “Terra Firme”, where we will take a hike for the rest of the morning. You will get an introduction to the rainforest ecology and see an amazing variety of birds such as woodpeckers, tanagers, macaws and toucans. Here you will have the opportunity to see a couple of monkey species, as well. After a delicious lunch and time to relax at the lodge, we will navigate back to Laguna Grande to enjoy a wonderful sunset, surrounded by animals of the rainforest as bats, bugs and frogs; and if the weather permits you will have the opportunity to go swimming and enjoy the lagoon. After a day of adventures, we will return to the Tapir Lodge where dinner will be waiting. After dinner you can enjoy refreshments at our bar and join us for a quick night hike around the lodge to explore night wonders of the rain forest.
After breakfast we will canoe up the Cuyabeno River until we reach the local community where we will experience daily community life and activities like harvesting and cooking. You will have the opportunity to buy handmade crafts that are carefully produced by the locals. We finish our visit meeting the shaman at his house where he will share his knowledge about the rainforest and the processes he uses to heal his people. Here you get to experience an ancestral healing ceremony that has been passed on through the generations. In the afternoon we will meet the local Siona family. They will show us and invite us to take part in the preparation of cassava bread. This local dish, which is prepared with the yuca (cassava) root, represents an important part of the local diet and the main source of carbs for the indigenous communities of the rainforest. Once you have tried cassava bread we will head back to Tapir Logde to spend another night in the middle of the jungle.
Now it is your turn. Today you plan your itinerary! The Lodge offers a large array of activities like canoe paddling, trekking and swimming! The guide will help you to tailor your day.
After breakfast it is time to return to Lago Agrio. You get to enjoy your final canoe trip back to El Puente. From there our driver will take you back to the airport of Lago Agrio.
Necessary Equipment (not included):
Gulliver Expeditions is a local operator that organizes Ecuador Tours to travelers that like to experience Unlimited Adventures like climbing to the closest point on earth to the sun in the Chimborazo Volcano or travel along the deepest landscapes in the Amazon Rainforest to the stunning sceneries of the Galapagos Islands.