Napo Wildlife Center
Located in Ecuador's Amazon Basin, the Napo Wildlife Center is the only lodge in the Yasuní National Park, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The lodge complex sits on the shore of Añangu Lake, within the ancestral territory of the Añangu Quichua Community. Each of the 16 individual cabañas are screened against insects, and each offers a private terrace with lake and rainforest views, private bathroom, electricity, and ceiling fan. The central structure of the complex, where meals are served, also offers several comfortable social areas, including a bar and reading lounge. Excursions are co-lead by experienced bilingual Ecuadorian guides and Añangu native guides, and include hiking, night walks, birding, canoeing, and climbing the two observation towers to look out over the jungle.
Reaching the remote Napo Wildlife Center is an adventure. From the Quito airport, fly over the spectacular Andes Mountains to the jungle city of Coca. You will be transferred to the dock, where a motorized canoe waits to take you approximately 2 hours down the Napo River. Upon arrival at the Napo Wildlife Center landing dock, you will walk into the jungle to the beautiful Añangu Lake, which you cross in a dugout paddle canoe (motorized transport is not allowed within the Añangu Reserve) to reach the lodge on the opposite shore.
Why we recommend it
The Napo Wildlife Center includes over 53,500 acres of pristine rainforest and offers the only lodge inside Yasuní National Park. Located within the territory of the Añangu Quichua Community, the lodge complex was planned and built by the community as a way to preserve the local culture and environment. Thanks to the Añangu Community initiative, the Napo Wildlife Center serves as a protected refuge for an immense variety of plant and animal life. The center also helps the Añangu Quichua preserve their traditional way of life and provides jobs to the community, and because all tours are co-guided by Añangu native guides, visitors are given a unique perspective and experience unavailable at other Amazonian lodges.