Find your hidden home along the Pastaza River deep in the Amazon Rainforest, while taking in spectacularly wild scenery.
The region which surrounds the thunderous Pastaza River is a typically lush and verdant mix of gushing waterfalls, dramatic gorges, and an unusually high number of fantastic lookout points among the various jungle trails here. The river itself snakes its way through the forest floor, dissecting valleys and bringing life to this volcanic area. Certain sections of the Pastaza are known for white-water rafting; an adrenaline-packed alternative to the forest walks which have attracted wildlife spotters to this part of the Amazon for many years.
The Pastaza River Region is slightly more challenging to reach than other Amazon reserves in Ecuador, but this adds to its appeal since there are far fewer visitors who make the journey here. From Quito, you can choose to either fly or be driven to Shell or Mera, the nearest hubs, and then board a light aircraft to head deeper into the rainforest, touching down within an hour in the heart of Pastaza. You might then need to hop on a canoe to continue the rest of the way, but when you arrive, you’ll discover why it was all worth the journey!
Delightfully teeming with creatures great and small, from the Harpy Eagle to Pink River Dolphin, Osprey to Three-toed Sloth, the Pastaza River Region is prime for wildlife-watching. In addition to the obvious ecological diversity to be found here, this remote area is home to a selection of secluded, sustainable and extremely well-run eco-lodges. Not only do these lodges offer amazing activities within the jungle, they have also actively contributed towards a greater awareness of some of the challenges facing the Amazon Rainforest. For those who seek utmost seclusion and don’t want to rush their Amazon experience, the Pastaza River Region is the perfect choice.
Pink River Dolphins of the Pastaza
The beautiful Pink River Dolphins are in abundance along the Pastaza River. Historically, their conservation has not been through intentional effort but was instead due to a belief among indigenous jungle communities that the Dolphins hold mystical powers, and should, therefore, remain untouched. Typically they are just as friendly as their better-known grey cousins, so will make you feel very welcome on visiting their natural habitat!
Traditional Achuar dream interpretation
The Achuar people are seen as synonymous with the rainforest. Literally translating as 'People of the Aguaje Palm', the indigenous Achuar community has only been truly open to the western world since the 20th century. While staying in this region of the Amazon, it is possible to participate in an early morning ceremony performed by a local Achuar dream interpreter, gaining a fascinating insight into an important part of their culture.
The Amazon rainforest is a natural haven for countless bird species, giving even the most amateur birdwatchers the chance of a lifetime when visiting. Though there are many native species in this section of jungle, the coloured Macaws and Green Parrots are among the most populous.