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Sacha Amazon rainforest eco-lodge offers a fabulous wildlife holiday full of adventure and all the home comforts.
Excellence is the watchword at Sacha, starting with its fantastic guides and staff through its lovely rooms and delicious food.
You will see a lot of wildlife here – almost three decades of protection means that many animals roam this protected with little fear of humans.
Sacha Lodge is a wonderful introduction to one of the most wildlife-rich and biodiverse areas on the planet.
The area is replete with animals, from monkeys to birds, to insects and bats, and the native staff work alongside guides to preserve nature.
Sacha’s famous canopy walkway takes you to the heights that the sloths live at, and gives magnificent views of birds atop 30m trees as you stand over the forest.
Don’t miss the wooden tower. Watch a glorious sunset, surrounded by a cacophony of sounds as the animals wake or bed down for the night.
Explore the rainforest
Perched on the black waters of Lake Pilchicocha, Sacha has relatively few mosquitoes and a very high standard of room and bathroom.
The butterfly farm may give you the chance to see a butterfly leaving its cacoon as well as spot tarantulas. The clay like in full display is a highlight for all.
In the rainforest, keep your eyes peeled for monkeys, birds, insects and more bigger animals like jaguar, puma, tapir and giant anteater.
Sacha Lodge is the Quichua Indian word to mean ‘forest’ and this is a trip into beautiful Amazonian canopy that you’ll never forget.
Depart Quito´s airport at 11.00 (approx.)
A 30-minute flight over the Andes Mountains leads you to a bustling oil town called Coca located in the Amazon Basin. A quick lunch in Sacha’s private house and then it’s off to the town docks where you board Sacha’s private canoes for the 2-hour journey down river to Sacha Lodge.
A 30-minute hike through the rainforest leads you to lake Pilchicocha. Here, you are met by native workers to paddle you across the lake to your final destination.
Arrive at Sacha Lodge around 15.30-16.00.
Swim in Lake Pilchicocha, which is a black water lake home to many species of fish and animals.
A refreshing swim after arriving may be just what you need after being in the equatorial heat all day. Bird observing from the mini tower offers guests an excellent opportunity to view several species of birds common around the lodge. Also a great place to watch the sun set.
Visit the butterfly house with your naturalist guide to view the beautiful colours of many different species of butterflies.
After dinner, accompany your naturalist guide on a night walk through the rainforest to view the hundreds of different species of animals that can only be found at night. Or maybe a canoe ride on the lake to view the spectacled and black caimans with their glowing orange eyes as you silently paddle across the lake to get a closer view.
Begin morning activity between 06.00 and 07.00.
Begin walking on trail Liana Chica and arrive at the canopy walk, for spectacular views of the rainforest canopy and the many different species of vibrantly collared birds.
Designed to be a self-standing rigid suspension canopy walk. it is one of only a few in the world.
Located within Sacha’s private reserve, two miles from the shores of the Rio Napo and 1 mile from the lodge, the bird walk gives guests the opportunity to get an up close and personal view of the rainforest canopy.
Two of the three towers have observation decks every 12m making towers accessible for everyone.
The canopy walkway is at 36m high and 275m long, giving guests a ‘bird’s eye view’ of all the wonders and beauty the tropical rainforest has to offer.
The canopy walk is designed as a sturdy walkway enabling guests to casually move along while enjoying the spectacular views.
After the canopy walk, Liana Grande through terra firma and Igapo forest habitats where native guides explain many different species of medicinal plants that have been being used in their culture for hundreds of years.
Liana Grande turns into the trail Higueron, which takes you through pristine primary forest with huge Kapok and Fig trees towering hundreds of feet above your head.
After lunch, you may choose to take a leisurely hike along the Rio Napo, or choose a little more challenging hike on the trail Leoncillo to try and spot the elusive dusky titi monkey. Either way the trails lead you back to the main boardwalk for your final hike and canoe ride back to the lodge.
Leaving the lodge after breakfast, you begin your hike on trail Lagartococha. This trail offers you the chance to learn more about the native people and their relationship with the forest.
Learn about the trees where native people believe the spirits of their ancestors live, and the mysterious ‘dwende’ or devil-man of the forest. After arriving at lake Lagartococha, take a tranquil canoe ride through a natural swamp, which is the home of anacondas, caimans, and capybaras.
After the canoe ride, a walk on the other side of Largatococha may give you the opportunity to spot capuchin or squirrel monkeys playfully jumping through the trees.
Return from the walk or canoe ride and head back to the lodge for a refreshing dip in the lake, or a nice relaxing nap in your personal hammock on your private balcony.
After lunch, your native guide teaches you how to fish for the infamous razor-toothed piranha. Keep in mind that piranhas never attack a person and swimming at the same time is perfectly safe and fun.
Around 15.30 you begin what many think is the best trail at Sacha, a silent canoe ride through the flooded Amazonian forest. Where you have a good chance of being surrounded by troops of squirrel, capuchin, and howler monkeys.
Keep your eyes peeled for the shy and elusive river otter as well as the incredibly well camouflaged three-toed sloth.
After your eye-popping ride through the flooded forest, you arrive at Sacha’s 135-foot wooden tower built around an ancient Kapok tree. Get close up views of vibrantly collared birds through Sacha’s powerful scopes, and watch the sun set with an amazing view of Mount Sumaco, a volcano, and possibly a view of the snow-covered caps of the Andes.
Leaving the tower just before or after sunset gives you an experience not soon forgotten.
A canoe ride back through the flooded forest at night is an awe-inspiring experience. Listen to the symphony of frogs and insects as you navigate through the narrow flooded forest trail, keeping your eyes open for caimans.
Watch the several species of bats flying over your heads and listen to the many species of nocturnal birds making their eerie nighttime calls. Finally, after your mesmerising canoe trip through the Amazon, you arrive back at lake Pilchicocha and the welcoming lights of Sacha lodge.
A chance to view four different species of parrots at the same time is something that should not be missed.
Sacha is close enough to Yasuni National Park that a thirty minute motorized canoe ride down the Napo to the parrot lick is well worth it.
Leaving at six in the morning from Sacha and arriving at the lick around o7.30 gives you plenty of time to get close up views of the parrots eating the clay to neutralise the acids which they get from eating their many different types of fruits and leaves.
Arriving back at the lodge around 11.00 or so gives you plenty of time to swim or relax before lunch is served. Visit the butterfly house once again to photograph the beautifully coloured butterflies.
For your afternoon activity, Pantano is the trail to take. Pantano offers you several different types of rainforest habitats, from secondary to primary forests as well as flooded forest and swampy areas.
An excellent trail for monkeys and birds in the afternoon, your naturalist and native guides share with you with their knowledge of the jungle and its inhabitants as well as provide you with an everlasting experience and memory of the neotropical rainforest.
Breakfast and a departure from the lodge at 07.30 for an easy walk on the boardwalk to watch monkeys one last time before your final departure.
Arrive in Coca and be escorted to the Coca airport where all plane tickets will be in the hands of Sacha employees waiting to help you board the plane and a final farewell. Scheduled arrival at Quito´s airport is at 12.30 (subject to change).
Meals and purified water from lunch days 1 to breakfast departure day, domestic flights, English-speaking guide, all transport and accommodation at lodge, excursions, national park entry fees, rain poncho and rubber boots when needed.
Insurance, international flights (we can look for these for you), personal expenses, alcoholic or soft drinks, tips, Wi-Fi fee
All of our cabins, with high thatched roofs and private shaded terraces with hammocks, are constructed with traditional materials and nestle subtly into the lush surroundings.
Each of the 26 rooms (single, double and triple accommodations) plus three family cabins, provides a spacious private bathroom with flushing toilet and hot shower – some even feature floor-to-ceiling windows for an immersive jungle shower experience.
All cabins are screened against insects, and contain ceiling fans above two comfortable double beds.
Named after the Spanish word for a “raft”, the Balsa is at the heart of the Sacha Lodge experience: a covered al fresco lounge area with a breath taking view over the shimmering Pilchicocha Lake. It is the perfect place to read a book with a glass of wine, spot birds, caiman and giant otters, or to watch the crimson sunsets and tremendous thunder storms.
The safari-lodge style bar is found above the restaurant and fitted with snuggly sofas and stools propping up the bamboo bar. Relax with an ice-cold beer or wine, or classic cocktails made by our master barman.
A small boutique selling essentials like sunblock, mosquito repellent and toiletries is open from 10.30 to 21.30. This is also the place to pick up Sacha Lodge souvenirs including logo t-shirts and baseball caps.
Internet connections are available in the open areas of the Lodge, at an additional daily rate.
Purified, safe drinking water is available at multiple points around the Lodge – there’s no need to bring your own bottled water.
Throughout the Lodge, 24-hour electricity is provided by a distant, nearly inaudible generator.
Sacha Lodge provides laundry service (washing and drying) for guests.
Friendly staff form the backbone of the Sacha Lodge experience, and are always available to cater to any special needs you may have.
On average, there are three staff members on duty for every two guests at the lodge.
The rustic, airy restaurant offers a relaxed atmosphere for dinner with its windows open, allowing the cicadas evening song to circle.
An a la carte dinner is served in the restaurant, bringing fine dining to the jungle. Using fresh and sustainable products, our chef prepares meals to delight the tastes of a world traveler while satisfying the appetite of an adventurer.
Almost all dietary requirements can be catered for – contact us for more.
Breakfast and lunch buffets mixing international cuisine with traditional Ecuadorian dishes are served in the Balsa. There are light, healthy options as well as more substantial pasta and meat dishes.
An a la carte dinner is served in the restaurant, bringing fine dining to the jungle. Menus change daily, and will often include the popular paiche, a meaty white fish found in the Amazon region – with the all-important Green Seal of responsible fishing.
Vegetarians are more than welcome, and our chefs will be happy to cater for any special needs you may have upon request.
At least one evening during your stay we will hold a barbecue on the lakeside Balsa, with grilled fish, meat and vegetables.
This trip is open to everyone who has good mobility. You need to be able to get in and out of canoes and boats. Walks are 3-4km in total, but can be varied.
The Amazon is very hot between midday and early afternoon, so we rise early, between 0600 and 0700, to catch the animals at dawn when they are very active. We leave the lodge early, go on an activity, and then relax when the sun is at its hottest.
As the day cools, we head off in the afternoon and in the evenings go on hikes or caiman spotting. Evening meals are usually around 1930-2000, after which we relax at the lodge and listen to the sounds of the Amazon.
You can pick and choose activities along with your guide and group, although the guide’s decision is final.
Ecuador is the second smallest South American country, and one of the most varied.
It comprises three main geographical areas: the coast, highlands and Amazon plus is home to the Galapagos Islands.
Because of its relatively compact size, it makes a great holiday destination as you can move from highlight to highlight fairly easily and rapidly.
Landscapes vary from the drier south to the more humid north.
The Highlands, or sierra, encompass two Andean Cordilleras (the Central and Western), which run north to south through the country. Ecuador’s largest volcano is Chimborazo (6,310m) whose summit, because of its proximity to the equator, is the closest point on earth to the sun. Several of Ecuador’s volcanoes are still active, and it’s a great area for trekking.
Descending the steep, east-facing slopes of the eastern Cordillera, one passes through a transition zone comprising dense cloud forest and humid high jungle, before entering the Amazon lowlands.
This mainly primary rainforest covers a third of the country, accounts for 5% of the population and stretches across Ecuador, from its Colombian to its Peruvian borders.
The Galapagos Islands are simply unique. Lying 600 miles off the mainland, the archipelago comprises the summits of gigantic equatorial volcanoes.
The flora and fauna of the Galapagos, long separated from their continental cousins, have evolved differently. Charles Darwin used his observations there to develop his theory of Evolution.
Good kit is vital for every trip.
Book with Andean Trails and get 15% off Páramo’s fantastic ethical and high performance outdoor gear.
You can also read our blog about a day in the Amazon rainforest of Peru.
Detailed kit list
Please note: Guests should arrive in clothes which they do not mind getting slightly dirty or wet, and should wear footwear that is suitable to walk on a rainforest trail. Sun cream, insect repellent, hat and waterproof clothing should be carried in hand luggage and kept accessible for the journey to the lodge.
You may want to keep your binoculars and camera handy, too.
All bedding, toilet paper etc. is provided at the lodge (or camp, if camping).
You will also need a valid passport with at least 6 months remaining validity.
British nationals do not need a visa for Ecuador.
Non UK residents please check with the Ecuadorian embassy or consulate in your country of residence.
ALL visitors to Ecuador and Galapagos must have valid health and medical insurance to cover their entire stay. Inability to show a valid policy on arrival at customs will lead to a refusal of entry.
We strongly suggest that everyone planning to travel to Ecuador visits their local doctor/travel clinic prior to departure for the latest vaccination information.
For people travelling to the Amazon/coast and regions below 1,500m (excluding Galapagos, which is malaria free):
Official name: Republic of Ecuador
Country population: 15,000,000
Capital city: Quito (2.51 million)
Largest cities: Guayaquil, Quito, Cuenca, Machala
Languages: Spanish (official), Quechua
Latitude/Longitude: 2º S, 77º 30 W
Official currency: US dollar
Major industries: bananas, shrimp, oil, gold, roses
Time zone: GMT-5 (Galapagos GMT-6)
Being at altitude, especially in the tropics, is usually a pleasure as it isn’t so hot, there are few insects and the air is clear.
However, when gaining altitude, air pressure drops and the amount of oxygen reaching the lungs is reduced. Although we build plenty of acclimatisation time into our itineraries, certain ill-effects are possible. Nevertheless, all of these can be minimised or prevented if care is taken.
On reaching heights above 2,500m (approx. 8,200 ft), especially when ascent has been straight from sea level, heart pounding, mild headache and shortness of breath are normal, especially on exertion.
Acute mountain sickness (AMS) is a syndrome known locally as soroche, whose symptoms can include of bad headache, dizziness and nausea).
To avoid AMS, you should:
February/March ( weekend before Ash Wednesday)
Colourful parades and throwing water.
Location: Guaranda and country wide.
March or April
Festival: Semana Santa/Holy Week
Gran Poder Parade
End of September and 5th November
Festival: Mama Negra
Religious street parade with “Mama Negra” – man dressed garishly as a woman
Festival: Dia de los Difuntos/ Day of the Dead
Visits to cemeteries and “feasts” at the graves of loved ones.
Location: Otavalo area, Calderon and country wide.
Festival: Paseo del Niño / Baby Jesus parade
Children parade the streets on horseback accompanied by families.
Andean Trails can book all your international and domestic flights for this trip and for UK passengers; we have full ATOL bonding and can book flights with most airlines.
International flight prices are variable and usually can only be guaranteed at the time of booking. If you would like to upgrade to business or first class, or even arrive at an earlier date/depart at a later date we can also arrange this for you.
Typically, you fly to a country’s capital city and then overnight there or make a connecting flight (if available) to your next destination.
Please contact us for flight advice especially if you do make a connection on the same day. It is important to purchase a through ticket and not separate tickets for connections, so that you are covered for any delays. Passengers with separate tickets that are delayed run the risk of having to buy an entirely new ticket to continue their journeys.
Please note all airline schedules are subject to change and are out of our control.
Almost all flight tickets are now e-tickets. Any that are not will be handed to you on arrival in South America – this is most common for flights on smaller planes in Amazon areas such as Guyana/Bolivia.
The final travel instructions we send you some 2-3 weeks before departure will list the latest flight times, flight numbers etc as well as list your e-ticket numbers and booking reference code (6 characters i.e. GB75RK). This is what you will need to check in with.
How do I check in?
Depending on the airline, we can reserve some seats for you at the time of booking your international flights with us.
If we cannot reserve seats at the time of booking, you have to wait for online check in to open (usually 24-72 hours before departure).
To check in online you will need to go to the website of the airline you are travelling with, and have your e-ticket number/booking reference to hand. Click check in online, enter your details, and choose your seat.
Some flights will allocate seats at the check in desk at the airport and some may not allocate seats at all.
Help flying via the USA (ESTA form).
The United States (USA) has an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) which all travellers to and via the USA must complete BEFORE travel to/via its airports and shores.
More information can be found on their ESTA website.
Passengers who have not completed the form will be denied boarding.
Before you begin this application, make sure that you have a valid passport and credit card available.
This application will only accept the following credit cards: MasterCard, VISA, American Express, and Discover (JCB, Diners Club).
Andean Trails has two decades of experience of dealing with South America holidays.
We pay a fee to the CAA for every licensable passenger we book since we hold an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority. In the unlikely event of our insolvency, the CAA will ensure that you are not stranded abroad and will arrange to refund any money you have paid to us for an advance booking.
We also offer ATOL (Civil Aviation Authority) protected holidays to give our customers peace of mind when booking and travelling.
When you buy an ATOL protected air holiday package from Andean Trails Ltd you will receive a Confirmation Invoice from us confirming your arrangements and your protection under our Air Travel Organiser’s Licence number 6275.
You can read more about ATOL, who is covered and what protections you have if not ATOL-covered, on our ATOL page.
What is ATOL?
The CAA’s ATOL scheme offers protection to your money and your holiday if you book with us. Not everybody is covered (see ‘Who is covered?’ for more), as you must purchase an ‘air package holiday’ with Andean Trails to be protected.
And ‘air package holiday’ is defined as including a flight and some ground services (hotel, transfer, trek etc). This is also known as an ‘ATOL-protected holiday’.
Who is covered?
To be covered by ATOL, you must book a flight and some ground services with us and be from the UK. If you are from the UK and only book ground services and no flights, you are not covered by ATOL (see below for more on how non-ATOL clients are covered).
If you are outside the UK and buy flights with us, you will be ATOL protected IF any of the flights booked with Andean Trails touches/stops in the UK at any point during your holiday package booked with us.
If you buy your flights elsewhere, please check with that agent if you are ATOL protected. Be careful with online flight purchases and make sure you know what protection you have, if any, before paying for flights.
Not all holiday or travel services offered and sold by us will be protected by the ATOL scheme. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking.
For land only holidays not involving any air travel, in accordance with “The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992”, all UK passengers booking with Andean Trails Ltd. are fully protected for the initial deposit and subsequently the balance of all money paid to us, arising from cancellation or curtailment of travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Andean Trails.
I’m not ATOL covered, what protection do I have?
If you are not ATOL covered, any payments you make to us go to a Trust account.
We can only access this money once your tour has been completed, meaning that if anything happens to Andean Trails Limited while you are on holiday, then your money is secure and you can either complete the trip or be able to make it home.
If you pay for your holiday with a credit card, some offer payment protection – please check with your cardholder.
You also should have cancellation protection written into your insurance (which we recommend you have at the time of booking) in case you need to cancel.
In large cities such as Quito and Guayaquil, you should guard against bag snatching, bag slashing and pick-pocketing.
Highway robbery should also be guarded against. We strongly recommend you take the following precautions:
On the coast
Ceviche de pescado Raw marinated fish, served with tostado (roasted maize).
Ceviche Popular everywhere, is best on the coast.
Ceviche de mariscos Marinated shellfish. Most varieties of shellfish ceviche – e.g. camaron (prawn) and langostino (king prawn) – are cooked before being marinated. The exception is ceviche de conchas (clams) which is marinated raw.
Langosta Lobster (Increasingly endangered, but is still fished illegally).
Empanada de verde Ground plantain pasty filled with meat, cheese or shrimp.
Sopa de bola de verde Plantain dumpling soup
Encocadas Dishes prepared with coconut milk. Can be shrimp, fish etc.
Patacones Fried plantain chips
In the Highlands
Locro de papas Potato and cheese soup.
Mote Burst maize.
Caldo de patas Cow-hoof soup (with mote).
Llapingachos Fried potato and cheese patties.
Empanada de morocho Ground maize shell filled with meat.
Sancocho de yuca Vegetable soup with manioc.
Cuy Guinea pig
Fritada/Chicharron Fried pork
Hornado Roast pork
Humita Ground maize meal wrapped in maize leaf and steamed (sweet or savoury).
Quimbolito Similar to humita, but made from maize flour and steamed in a banana leaf (sweet or savoury).
Jugos Fruit juices are very good, including naranjilla, maracuya (passion fruit), tomate de arbol (tree tomato – like a sweet tomato) and piña (pineapple).
Aguardiente Unmatured rum (Cristal is nice). Also known as paico, trago and trago de caña.
Cerveza Lager-type beer is very popular. Several brands, including Pilsener and Club.
Currency & Money Exchange
Ecuador uses the US dollar as its currency.
Take small denomination, unmarked and undamaged bills, 1s, 5s, 10s and 20s being the best. You will find it hard to use 50s, and 100s are seldom accepted anywhere.
ATM debit/credit cards are now widely used in major restaurants, hotels and shops (with fees), and there are ATM (‘hole-in-the-wall’) machines widely available in towns and cities.
Don’t forget to read our Guide to Tipping in Ecuador, too.
Eating and drinking
Ecuador has a wide variety of food and drink to enjoy.
There are a few top end restaurants in Quito, where you can easily spend more than USD 100pp on food and wine.
Prices vary greatly, below is a rough guide to what you can expect to pay in Ecuador.
Beer/soft drink: USD 2
Menu del dia: USD 3-5
Coffee: USD 1
Tourist style restaurant
Beer/soft drink: USD 2-3
Main dish: USD 10 upwards
Coffee: USD 2
Tipping is entirely voluntary and how much you give depends on how you feel about the service you have received.
This is a rough guideline:
Ecuador uses 120 volts, with a frequency of 60 Hz.
Most cameras, phones and computers are dual or multi voltage and probably won’t need a convertor – please check before leaving.
Some items you may bring, such as hairdryers, may need a convertor. They may short if you use them without the correct convertor.
Ecuador and Galapagos boats mainly use two-pin, flat-pronged Type A plugs and some sockets take Type B plugs.
Type A plug
Type B plug
The international code for Ecuador is +593.
Regions have dialling codes, with a 0 prefix.
Ecuador’s landlines have 7 digits, and to call landline-landline in the same city, simply dial the 7 digits.
If calling landline to another regional landline/city, start with a 0 then the regional code.
If using your own mobile phone to call a landline, dial the country code, the regional/city code without the 0, and then the number, e.g. for Quito (code: 02), dial +593 2 1234567.
Mobiles have 8 digits, and start with 09 to make a total of 10 digits;
If you are dialling Ecuador mobile to mobile, simply dial the full number, including the 09.
If using your own mobile phone to call an Ecuadorian mobile, dial the country code, then omit the 0 of 09, then the 8 remaining digits e.g. +593 9 1234-5678.
Almost all unlocked phones will work in Ecuador with a local SIM, however – check with your provider before arrival if your phone will work.
Roaming charges may be high – again, best to check.
Most hotels, cafes, restaurants and airports offer free and generally good Wi-Fi. There are some locoturios – internet cafes – offering cheap and good internet in most towns and cities.
Head to the official postal service, Correos del Ecuador.
Learning a few words of Spanish can really ingratiate you with the locals you’ll encounter, adding to the enjoyment of your holiday.
Below are some basics to get you started.
Good morning Buenos días
How are you? ¿Cómo estás?
Good afternoon Buenas tardes
Good bye Adiós
Most frequently asked questions (theirs):
Where are you (plural) from? ¿De dónde eres (son)?
What time is it? ¿Qué hora es?
Where have you come from? ¿De dónde vienes?
Give me (frequent, unwelcome question) Dáme / regálame
Most frequent questions (yours):
How much is it? ¿Cuánto vale?
What is this place called? ¿Cómo se llama este lugar?
What’s your name? ¿Cómo te llamas?
Do you have a map? ¿Tienes un mapa?
In the street / places:
Where can I find a currency exchange? ¿Dónde encuentro una casa de cambio?
Where is there a cash machine? ¿Dónde hay un cajero automatico?
Where is the underground/subway station? ¿Dónde esta la estacion de metro/subte(Buenos Aires)?
Where can I find a taxi? ¿Dónde puedo encontrar un taxi?
Where can I find a Supermarket? ¿Dónde puedo encontrar un supermercado?
Where is the hospital? ¿Dónde esta el hospital?
Where can I find a restaurant? ¿Dónde puedo encontrar un restaurante?
In the hotel:
What floor am I on? ¿En qué piso estoy?
Where are the elevators/lifts? ¿Dónde están los ascensores?
How do I access the Internet? ¿Cómo puedo acceder a Internet?
How do I call for room service? ¿Cómo llamo para el servicio de habitación?
How do I call down to the front desk? ¿Cómo llamo a la recepción?
In the restaurant:
A table for two/four please Una mesa para dos/cuatro, porfavor
I would like to drink… Me gustaria tomar….
May I see a menu? Puedo ver la carta/menu?
I would like to order.. Me gustaria pedir…
Can you bring me the check/bill please. Me trae la cuenta por favor
I need help. Necesito ayuda.
I have lost my passport. He perdido mi pasaporte.
Someone stole my money. Alguien robó mi dinero
I have been robbed. Me han robado
I need to call the police. Necesito llamar a la policía
I need to call the (country) Embassy Necesito llamar a la embajada de (country)
Andean Trails believes in Responsible Travel and actively supports several community projects.
Please see Our Advice and Our Ethos for more, and learn about the Projects We Support.
We operate the Inca Trail, our treks and tours with local firms.
We make sure that on our tours and Inca Trail we employ local staff, who are paid fair wages.
With the Inca Trail, We provide free life insurance to all of our porters. Tented accommodation and meals are provided for all trekking staff as well as foam mats, sleeping bags and rain ponchos. We have also provided the staff with trekking shoes. We ensure our porters carry a maximum of only 20kg. We offer them backpacks and they generally use back supports.
Clean burning fuel is used to cook the meals on the Inca Trail and porters carry gas stoves and butane bottles. We use biodegradable detergents when washing the cooking and eating utensils. If any part of our tour or trek is operated by another company, we try to ensure that high standards are maintained.
Our additional support helps the Huchuy Yachaq project which supports children and families in one of the poorest communities in the district of Cusco.
Responsible Tourism – Code of Conduct:
All our activities are governed by our respect for the environment and the people who live in it. We aim to make a positive impact both in the UK and in the Andean countries we work in (Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina).
We agree with the principals of sustainable development and specifically promote environmentally aware tourism in the Andean countries, in order to preserve the heritage of the people who live there and to help protect their environment.
In the UK we use recycled paper where possible, recycle what we can and attempt to keep waste to an absolute minimum.
Throughout South America we work together with local people, paying them a fair price, and putting money into the local economy. We do this by using local agents, local trek staff and experienced and qualified local mountain and cultural guides who have an in-depth knowledge of their own country. Our porters on the Inca Trail are fairly paid, carry a maximum load of 20kg and are supplied with tents and food. In other areas we use donkeys or horses to carry loads.
We use locally owned services such as hotels and restaurants, wherever possible. We buy fresh local produce for all of our treks from markets in each departure town. We use public transport whenever possible and feasible.
We have ongoing contact with the teams that we work with and also with local families in the areas we trek through, developing relationships with them and donating goods such as clothes and shoes to their communities, through appropriate local agencies. We also support local Peruvian charities, specifically NIÑOS in Cusco, and CARE in the Huaraz area, plus Huchuy Yachaq.
If you have any suitable (warm) clothes and shoes that you would like to donate to Peruvian children please take them with you and give them to your tour leader, who will ensure they go to a suitable organization.
When out on tour we encourage learning about the countries we travel in, the local culture of the teams we work with and the areas we pass through. Our guides hold informal talks with groups to inform about and discuss with them all aspects of local life. This helps understanding of the area and appreciation of the people who live there.
Our group sizes are kept to a maximum of 16 people, and we encourage smaller groups where possible. This minimises the negative impact we make on the local people, the wildlife and the environment, and increases the quality time spent in contact with the local people and environment.
When trekking we adhere to a responsible tourism code of practice and are also involved in ongoing training of our trek staff.
A full Health and Safety document will be sent to you at the time of booking and before you travel.
You can also read it on our website, or contact us for more information.
It is a condition of booking any of our holidays that you have comprehensive travel insurance to cover you for trip cancellation (by you), activities involved and destination. This cover should include repatriation costs, air ambulance and helicopter rescue.
We work with Travel Nomads, who offer insurance solutions to people in more than 140 countries across the world.
Should you decide not to purchase this insurance, you must provide us with details of your alternative insurance with or before your final payment.
Many of our tours travel through remote areas.
We believe our clients should be aware that the remoteness of some of our tours so very special could also cause certain problems.
Thus, whilst we endeavour to minimise the chances of anything unexpected happening, it has to be noted that no itinerary can or should be rigidly adhered to.
This is the very nature of adventure travel and we expect our clients to be prepared for delays and slight alterations in our programmed events.
Also, shared tours may include travellers from all over the world whose native language is not English.
Ecuador lies between latitudes 4º south and 2º north. Overall, climate varies according to time of year, altitude and region.
In the Ecuadorian highlands, there is little temperature variation by season as temperature depends largely on altitude.
In Quito, shade temperatures range from 6 to 10ºC in the morning and from 19 to 23ºC in the afternoon, with cool nights. In the lower basins between mountains, it gets significantly warmer.
Rainfall depends on whether an area lies closer to the eastern or western Andes. To the west, June-Sept is the dry period and Oct-May the wet (with often a short, dry spell in Dec or Jan).
The best period to visit Quito and trek and climb volcanoes such as Cotopaxi is the west Andean dry season of June-Sept and Dec/Jan. This is also Ecuador’s high season. During the Oct-May wet season, most rainfall is in the afternoons.
To the east, Oct to Feb are dry and Mar-Sept are wet. Overall, the southern highlands are drier than the northern highlands.
On the Pacific coast, rainfall becomes less from north to south. The coast can be enjoyed year-round, although from June-Sept mornings are often grey with the garua mists.
Jan-May is the hottest and rainiest time of year.
In Ecuador’s Amazonian region, rain can fall at any time, but Dec-March is usually the driest season and Mar-Sept is usually the wettest period.
The Galapagos Islands
Galapagos can be visited at any time of year.
The warm season is Jan-Jun, bringing calm, warm waters (around 70°F) and sunny days (72-9°F or 22-32°C), February and March being the hottest and sunniest months with blue skies and sunshine.
The islands receive slightly more rainfall during these months, occasional heavy bursts in the afternoon. Great for snorkelling and you can spend a lot of time in the water without wetsuits, with great, clear waters.
The dry ‘garua’ season is Jun-Dec an it’s a great time for marine life. August and September are the coolest when you may need a jacket in the evenings and the sea can be choppy and temperature drops around 15-24ºC on average.
There can be mist on the islands in the mornings (garua) which usually burns off by midday leaving overcast skies or a sunny afternoon.
Sea temperatures may drop to 60°F- 72°F (15-22°C) during this time and snorkellers will want a wet suit for prolonged periods in the sea.
What's a group trip?
Join a small group of like-minded travellers on a guided trip.
What's a tailor made trip?
We put together a bespoke tour to fit your requirements.
Prices From $422 / £338 per person
Dates: From September 2019 to December 2020
Capacity: 16 per person
Enquire about booking
Prices From $1,610 / £1,288 per person
Dates: From October 2019 to December 2020
Capacity: 24 per person
Prices From $1,917 / £1,534 per person
Dates: From January 2019 to December 2020
Prices From $1,390 / £1,112 per person
Capacity: 20 per person
Select an available date to view pricing and information for that particular trip.
2020 price, shared cabin, per person
Includes domestic flights
5 days: USD 1,760 per person
Single supplement applies
Upgrades to suites (from Mar 2020)
$1,460 / £1,168
Enquire about booking
Prices From $1,460 / £1,168 per person
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Both Amazon rainforest and Galapagos were excellent. The boat selection and the cruise itinerary were outstanding.
Everything was perfectly organised. All parts of the trip fully in line with the itinerary. Local representatives were available at the meeting points, they organised the documentation, the transport, everything.
Everything was excellent, the guides were very professional and helpful. Accommodation was also well selected, fully in line with the expectations. Next time, we will spend more time in Ecuador and visit other parts of this fascinating country.
Z Vuleta, Hungary, 2015
» Anahi, Luxury Galapagos Catamaran Cruise
Wow!! What an amazing trip. There really was no particular highlight as every segment was so different and so amazing! Basically the highlight was the whole trip! Everything ran like clockwork. All the tour guides/drivers were on time and all transport was on time (flights, buses, taxis). Everyone was friendly and helpful and not once were we made to feel scared or unwelcome.
Thank you so much for all your help with organising this trip of a lifetime. I am so happy with my decision to choose Andean Trails as our guide for this five week trip and of course I will be recommending (have already actually) Andean Trails to family and friends.
J. Gibbons, Qatar, 2015
» Anahi, Luxury Galapagos Catamaran Cruise
Which animal might you adopt?
#Galapagos #conservation twitter.com/galapagossip/statu…
14th June, 2020 6:21 pm
THE NORTH OF PERU The north of Peru is brimming with treasures and it is much less travelled than the southern hot spots of Cusco and Machu Picchu. Northern Peru travel never fails to surprise and impress, it is a fascinating part of this wonderful country well worth exploring. There is masses to see and do here so I would recommend a good amount of time. If you can I would dedicate a week as a minimum and ideally two weeks to a tour to the north of Peru. Have a read of “Our Travel Guide to Northern …
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