Located in the heart of one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet, Ecuador’s Yasuni National Park is rich with extraordinary wildlife and vibrant local culture. Spanning nearly 2.5 million acres of Amazonian rain forest. Napo Wildlife Center is a gem to be cherished and the only lodge within the Yasyni park boundaries, an important biosphere reserve and the largest tract of tropical rain forest in Ecuador.
Napo Wildlife Center, was built on a small ridge at the edge of a great jungle lake, called Anangu, and surrounded by beautiful pristine rainforest and ancestral territory of the Anangu Quichua Community. Thanks to their own initiative and supported by the Tropical Nature Conservation System, they have built in partnership the most carefully designed luxury eco-lodge in Ecuador.
The journey to NWC starts in Quito, Ecuador’s capital city. From it’s national airport an approximately 35 minute flight will take guests over the Eastern Andes Mountain Range, crossing the equator and looking into snow capped volcanoes over 5,790 meters above sea level (18,991 feet) to reach the headwaters of the Amazon Basin near the Napo River at only 250 m.a.s.l (820 feet).
The Napo Wildlife Center is situated on the Northern margins of the Yasuní National Park on the banks of the Napo River. The lodge is reached after a 2.5 hour comfortable motorboat ride from Coca city down the Napo River. From the arrival point on the river, you are transferred to paddle-canoes —to reduce the environmental impacts and preserve the forest and its wildlife, on a narrow black-water creek that takes you to Añangu Lake and finally see the red cabins of the Napo Wildlife Center.
This boat ride is one of the best experiences in the whole trip as the local guide silently paddles under the canopy of the trees that close over Añangu creek with great chances of encountering giant otters, several primate species, peccaries and the luckiest, a jaguar or tapir.
Lodging at NWC has been designed to offer maximum privacy and comfort to the world traveller, providing lake and forest views from their private porches, as well as preserving one of the most pristine spots of Amazon forest in Ecuador. Each of our 16 individual large luxury cabins are prepared for receiving guests in double occupancy or arranged in advance for 3 members family visit. Rooms include a king size and twin size bed, private balcony with views of the lake, bathrooms with hot water, a multi-speed ceiling fan, electricity provided by silent generators supplemented by solar panel power system, plenty of lights and 120 v outlets, safety deposit box, ceiling fans and screened windows and mosquito nets.
Buildings keep the traditional native architecture with harmonious modern mixture inside providing cool shaded terraces with inviting hammocks and ample space from where visitors may observe the surroundings. While resting from activities people may get to see a group of giant otters investigating near the lodge dock or a large 4 meter (13 feet) black caiman crossing the lake or a capybara looking for rest near our lake edge, or experience the graceful often flights of blue and yellow macaws over the lodge area. The main hall has a dining room and library with books on local birds and tropical ecology. Next door, the bar provides ice-cold beer, wine, soft drinks and other liquor selections. The calls of red howler monkeys will company the resting times before gearing up for the next excursion.
Guests are welcome to use our observation tower next to the dining hall during free time other than the guided visit and simply relax with the great view of the Anangu lake. The not so distant canopy of the rain forest will be a good opportunity for birding or discovering more wildlife right next to the lodge. The dock area is a nice spot to receive that equatorial tropical sun or the base for a nice dip into the lake. Without fear you can swim around the dock and have a refreshing time, guides of course will jump in first and eliminate any doubts you may have in spite of the black caimans and piranha inhabitants!, believe me it is a very safe and rewarding cool water. Meals are carefully prepared to delight the variety of tastes and desires of the international visitor, including traditional Ecuadorian dishes, forest gifts or the preparation of vegetarian or special meal requirements. Reverse osmosis water filtration system is used in the kitchen (very safe)
Also we have invested in an environmentally sustainable sewage system, best and unique on the Napo region and probably best in the Amazon. All waste water is treated to the highest standard in order to keep the swamps clean of human activity. Quality of effluent water is higher than the lake environment! Power is generated by a top of the line hybrid system featuring solar panels, industrial batteries and noiseless generators – an efficient system that generates energy with almost no impact.
Visitors will be divided up into small groups, and lead by a native Anangu guide, who is also an official Yasuni Park Ranger, expert on the forest’s secrets about medicinal plants and other useful items of the rain forest, and an excellent bilingual naturalist guide with great deal of knowledge in tropical forest biology. Both guides using their unmatchable enthusiasm will create informative enjoyable excursions every day providing an educative fun experience. Groups and guides will tailor their excursions while taking advantage of the highest peaks of activity and weather conditions in the forest. They will schedule their outings before done or at sunrise. This will maximize wildlife observation and of course each group will decide with their guides how extreme and intense they take their Amazon excursion, this applies for afternoon excursions and night outings, when an overwhelming concert of natural sounds will flood the atmosphere. Welcome and gear up to enjoy the best fauna attractions on the Napo!!!
One of the highlights at NWC is going out on a very early excursion to reach two of Ecuador’s most accessible parrot clay licks along the Napo region. These parrot clay licks are part of to our reserve and lodge territory. They have a history of being visited by naturalists and are mentioned in The Birds of Ecuador (Ridgely and Greenfield, 2001). These are 2 of the over a dozen clay licks found on the Anangu Community territory. Our parrot clay licks can be reached by following the Giant Otter creek downstream on dugout canoe near the Napo river. The Napo Wildlife Center has exclusively constructed well established and comfortable blinds in each parrot lick in order to provide visitors best viewing and high quality photo/video opportunities.
Activity kicks off at main lick between 7 to 8 in the morning and at second blind after mid-day. Species include: Mealy, blue headed, yellow crowned, orange winged and orange cheeked parrots, cobalt winged, dusky headed and white eyed parakeets, with the occasional rarities like scarlet shoulder parrot and scarlet macaws. In best weather conditions at least 800 individuals of most species can be spotted and in other days spite the rain one could still see a few dozens. This could be a full day excursion visiting both blinds equipped with a nice freshly made box lunch, or a half day visiting the main lick and returning for a served lunch at the lodge. Don’t miss a superb natural event full of unique sounds and brightly colored plumages!!.
There is a 19 m (60 feet) tall observation tower on top a 13 m (42 feet) hill. High enough to get great views of possible troops of howler or spider monkeys in the nearest forest canopy by an immense tropical scenery. It turns out to be just next to the main house at NWC. From here the avid professional and amateur birdwatcher can spot a great number of species. One can look into the forest canopy and let inspiration flow, sorry if this gets interrupted by two large macaws flying by. Armed with a spotting scope and binoculars guides will look and show you the best. Tower provides an ample platform for visiting groups with resting levels.
NWC has a large lake with two creeks that can be easily explored quietly while sitting on a dugout canoe paddled by our expert guides and staff eager to spot and show you wildlife. The possibilities are great in finding more troops of other species of monkeys like squirrel, saddle-backed and white fronted capuchin monkeys or those that by natural distribution or best habitat occur only on our South side of the Napo and include: monk saki, spider, woolly and golden mantle tamarin monkeys. NWC is home to a total of 11 species of monkeys.
Following the creeks a group of giant otters in a hurry to catch their fish for supper are a good chance. A well deserved prize for NWC guests. Creeks have a dense vegetation on sides, with large trees overhead and calm flowing waters, no one knows exactly what awaits in the next meander, a flooded forest with anaconda or a gentle easy moving three toed sloth.
FOREST TRAILS & HIKES
Hikes along a variety of forest types are possible by visiting different trails. One can appreciate the tropical forest richness, discover new plants and colorful or well camouflaged insects. On forest trails, guests can see monkeys, lizards, tortoises, frogs and army ants in addition to an array of birds, including toucans, macaws, parrots, manakins and hummingbirds.
Our staff is constantly aware of wildlife movements and they report each other when and where it will be best to try looking for…..”hey guys, we had a glimpse of a large spotted body last week on the main trail, when we approached discovered deep heavy steps of a cat..” This is the territory of the rich terra firme, the land of anything is possible, expect the unexpected. The largest mammals like jaguar, puma, tapir, giant anteater and giant armadillo have been spotted on our area.
Over 568 species of birds have been recorded at the Napo Wildlife Center, more than 1/3 of all of Ecuador`s birds. A vast and rich bird-life that can reward the most avid birdwatcher with the unrivalled South Napo specialties. NWC and Anangu are a classic visiting location for someone travelling Ecuador seeking for the overwhelming bird diversity.
Agami and ZigZag herons are found near the lake and creeks, including all 5 kingfishers. The large raptors like Harpy and Crested Eagles find healthy mammal food around our area. The active calls of forest floor mixed species flocks with the largest numbers of the surprising antbirds can be found. Canopy flocks are normal to run into, chances are birds provide an hour or so of a multitude of wow`s. Gear up with the best binoculars for the most superb views and active excursions helped with the expertise of the top native birdguide along the entire Napo: Jiovanny Rivadeneira. He is the head of a number of native guides that will eagle eye sight and successfully find for you that great plumaged world.
THE AÑANGU COMMUNITY
Anangu is not only home to the great NWC lodge, it has been the ancestral territory of a Quichua indigenous community that has the same name. Anangu people are active participants of the conservation and management of a large territory within the park as well as our partners in tourism. We would like to invite you see the community that had a dream and initiative long time ago to handle this vast rain forest territory by establishing their own lodge. Helped by EcoEcuador Foundation part of the Tropical Nature Conservation System, a world leading group of ongoing ecotourism projects, we all now work together on a nature tourism company. You can join some families on their daily activities when harvesting bananas, coco, manioc, a starchy jungle root, staple food for Amazonian people, or maybe helping preparing chicha, a traditional drink based on cooked and fermenting manioc. You like fish?, try catch your own in Amazon rivers helped by the local natives and their particular techniques.
NAPO WILDLIFE CENTER – 2017 TARIFFS
|NAPO WILDLIFE CENTER (Fri/Mon) 3 nights||$1417.00||$1638.00||$2126.00|
|NAPO WILDLIFE CENTER (Mon/Fri) 4 nights||$1690.00||$1979.00||$2535.00|
AIRFARE: Included in lodge rates for 2017. Arriving or departing on any day (except Sunday) is possible at no additional charge.
RATES INCLUDE: Airfare from Quito to Coca round trip, accommodations in double room with private bath, all meals, bilingual jungle guide, native guide, jungle tours, transfers, taxes and rubber boots.
CHILD DISCOUNTS: 30% discount offered for children 11 and younger for lodge rates and 50% discount on airfare.
NOT INCLUDED: gratuities, soft drinks, alcoholic beverages, souvenirs.
A $300.00 non-refundable deposit is required at the time of booking. Payment is due in full 60 days prior to departure, cancellations within 60 days of departure will incur full penalty.