Napo Wildlife Center


Member Rating 5 out of 5 by diverk on March 21, 2005

The Napo Wildlife Center is a high-end jungle lodge (high-end means less mosquitoes and clean sheets) found in the Napo River Valley. In order to get there, you need to fly to Coca City, take a motorized canoe for several hours down the Napo River, transfer to a dugout canoe (when the tribe sees an appropriate tree, a group of families cut down the tree together and build several canoes at one time directly in the jungle), and paddle for several hours down another side river.

Our lodge is on the Anagucocha Lake, which is a large lake filled with caimans (we went on a nighttime caiman watch one night) and a family of giant 8-foot otters. In order to get to any of the trails, we had to take the dugout canoe.

One day we visited the Quichua community of Anangu, where I was the fortunate person to receive a cleansing done by the local shaman (this fully energized me, but the shaman hit me for a while with some leaves and then blew into my hair for several minutes).

The special things about our jungle lodge (versus Sacha Lodge) included our lodge being smaller (10 huts), and therefore you don't have the crowds, and the fact that our lodge is half owned by the Quichua community, therefore half of all profits go to the tribe. This is wonderful for two reasons: first, it helps the tribe, but also, it helps prevent the oil companies from taking over the community. (There is a real problem in the rain forest with the oil companies, and you can see evidence of drilling throughout. Because this is upsetting so many locals and there are reports of violence, the workers in the oil companies get continuous security protection.) The other half of the profits goes to the NGO that approached the tribe and built the lodge.

The main attraction of the Napo Wildlife Center is the two parrot licks in the area. A parrot lick is a large natural mound of clay. The seeds that the parrots eat are poisonous, so the parrots seek these parrot licks to neutralize the poison. Therefore, on nice mornings, hundreds of parrots and parakeets flock to these licks. The Oriente is truly a rain forest. The trails were muddy, and we were always being rained on, but I loved it.

Napo Wildlife Center

Yasuni National Park, Ecuador

http://www.igougo.com/review-r1194079-Napo_Wildlife_Center.html

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