The Amazon basin is a vast and beautiful region, covering some 40 percent of South America. Home to the world’s largest rainforest as well as the Amazon river and its tributaries, it’s graced with a spectacular array of plant and animal life. And there are more ways to explore its wonders than you might think.
Ecuador and Peru are both ideal gateways to the Amazon. Both nations offer easy accessibility for international travelers, as well as myriad options for discovering the region’s vibrant flora, fauna, as well as local cultures. With so much to see and do in this area, flexibility is important, and Coddiwomple Journeys allows travelers to pick and choose the sites and activities that are highest on their wish list.
In Ecuador, Coddiwomple offers a 10-day Amazing Amazon Adventure that starts with a tour of the historic city of Quito, as well as a hike through an unspoiled cloud forest and an unforgettable photo opp at the “middle of the world” (the equatorial line). After those memorable experiences, you head straight to the heart of the Amazon rainforest, with a relaxing stop at a thermal pool on the way, followed by a chance to canoe on the Napo River, a major tributary of the Amazon River that runs some 668 miles. The next destination is Misahualli, a picturesque village where you can savor a picnic lunch along the river, and can even take a swim in its waters. A visit with local residents provides a fascinating insider’s view of life in Ecuador’s Amazon region.
Every day on the Amazing Amazon Adventure itinerary is filled with exciting and surprisingly different ways to explore and appreciate the Amazon rainforest, including breathtaking white water rafting on the Jatun Yacu river, as well as mountain biking from Banos to Pailon del Diablo (the Devil’s Cauldron), a thundering waterfall surrounded by lush scenery and hiking trails.
Accommodations in Ecuador’s Amazon region are beautifully appropriate for the destination. Coddiwomple features stays at Cotococha Amazon Lodge, which has 22 spacious bungalows overlooking the Napo River. Working with the Rainforest Alliance and Smart Voyager, Cotococha maintains a strong focus on sustainable practices, even as it provides comfortable accommodations that include private bathrooms with hot water, private verandas and oil lamps.
Peru’s Amazon region offers additional surprises for visitors. Coddiwomple’s Best of Peru itinerary includes the Amazon as part of its 11-day journey that highlights the nation’s most noteworthy tourism regions.
After arriving in the capital city of Lima and touring its most important sites, guests fly to Puerto Maldonado, a southeastern Peruvian city that sits just west of the Bolivian border. Located where the Tambopata and Madre de Dios rivers meet, Puerto Maldonado is an important port city, and provides some of the best access to wildlife viewing in the entire Amazon. At Inkaterra Hacienda Concepcion, a jungle lodge with a strong focus on sustainability and education, you can hike trails and learn about the importance of the region’s primary and secondary forests. Considering the lodge’s location near the Tambopata National Reserve and the shores of Madre de Dios River, it’s no surprise that the views here are impressive.
A twilight river excursion is the ideal way to end that first night, followed by a restful sleep at Inkaterra Hacienda Concepcion, which has 25 lovely cabanas, complete with 100 percent cotton sheets, bathrobes and hot water.
Next up on this Peruvian Amazon tour is a trek around scenic Sandoval Lake, a wildlife paradise that lies east of Puerto Maldonado. You’ll want to keep your eyes open to spot macaws, parrots, monkeys, caiman and endangered river otters. And for a completely different perspective, you won’t want to miss a rainforest night walk, when jungle sounds fill the air and expert guides help to point out nocturnal animals that you won’t likely see during the day. Whether by sunlight or moonlight, the Amazon is a must-see, especially in Ecuador and Peru.