Getting to the Kapawi Ecolodge is an adventure in and of itself. You arrive to the remote lodge by small charter aircraft, landing at the lodge's own airstrip. Local Achuar craftsmen helped build the cabins at Kapawi Ecolodge in the traditional style of the rainforest, using local materials, and each of the thatched-roof cabins is an expression of traditional Achuar design concepts. The cabins are connected by raised boardwalk to each other and to the central lodge and dining room, and each offers a spacious screened-in sleeping area and private bathroom with solar-heated water. Local guides help you explore the surrounding rainforest and spot wildlife. One of the most respected Amazon lodges in Ecuador.
Located in a remote area 10 days' walk from the nearest road, Kapawi Lodge is only accessible by air. From Quito, visitors travel overland about 4 hours to the city of Shell, a route that passes through the spectacular “Avenue of the Volcanoes” before descending through the majestic Pastaza River canyon. Once in Shell, you will take a small charter plane on a 30-minute flight over uninterrupted rainforest canopy to the lodge's private airfield. Due to the nature of small charter flights we recommend building an extra day into your itinerary, in Quito or the surrounding area, but for those looking for a remote, unique experience in the Amazon, Kapawi is an excellent option.
Why we recommend it
In addition to being a comfortable lodge with a spectacular location, Kapawi Lodge is also part of a pioneering ecotourism project: The Kapawi project opened in 1996 as a unique partnership between Canodros, an Ecuadorian tourism company, and the local Achuar community. The project's objective was to build an economically sustainable property that would contribute to the preservation of the cultural and environmental riches of Ecuador's Amazon region. In 2008, in accordance with the project plans, Canodros transferred ownership of Kapawi Ecolodge to the Achuar community, which now runs the property and lodge. As a result of this partnership and local management, Kapawi Ecolodge offers a uniquely cultural experience and helps preserve the integrity of the area.