The Sacha Jungle Lodge in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest was carefully designed to offer comfort to the traveler yet preserve the environment and rainforest ambiance. All of the cabins at Sacha Lodge, with high thatched roofs and private shaded terraces, are constructed with traditional materials and nestle well concealed into the lush surroundings. The staff at AdventureSmith has personally visited the Sacha Lodge and can provide a full Sacha Lodge review, see Expert Review link on the right sidebar.
Meals at Sacha Lodge
Activities at Sacha Lodge
Enjoy a raised lookout above the main bar and lounge, which offers a scenic view of Pilchicocha Lake and excellent opportunities to birdwatch. Active highlights include a 1000-foot canopy walkway, unique to Ecuador and probably one of only a few in the world; a butterfly farm, one of the largest such farms in Ecuador; a 140-foot-high tree tower built around an enormous Kapok tree; and optional add-on canoe excursions through flooded forest ecosystems. Rubber boots and rain ponchos are available to use for all guests, free of charge.
A typical day at Sacha begins at sunrise in order to take advantage of the cool morning hours when the rainforest’s animals are most active. Each group can decide its own wake-up and breakfast time, as well as the difficulty and duration of their morning outings. In the afternoon, activities begin around 3:00 and often continue into the evening, when the nocturnal insect and frog chorus begins. Wherever the destination, excursions at Sacha Lodge proceed slowly in order to appreciate the fascinating details that the naturalist guides can point out for you. Activities are spread out over a wide area, allowing you to explore several distinct but equally fascinating habitats. Several trails lead through pristine terra firme forest, where kapok trees tower above and roots form huge buttresses of support. Others paths follow strategically raised boardwalks in seasonally flooded forests, where walking on the ground would be nearly impossible during most of the year due to groundwater. One trail many choose to follow even leads across fallen tree trunks and a steel cable zip-line through rich swampland!
A favorite activity at Sacha Lodge is to paddle dugout canoes along tannin-rich blackwater creeks and lakes, where luxuriant lianas, orchids, bromeliads and palm trees thrive. Possibilities of spotting animals, from the tiny pygmy marmoset to the feared ocelot or puma, are endless. During free time at the lodge, enjoy swimming and piranha fishing (both perfectly safe). For adventurous souls, the day does not necessarily end with dinner. Night walks and canoe trips, with the aid of flashlights, often reveal creatures seldom seen during daylight. Caimans (of the alligator family) and giant insects rule the jungle after sunset… do you dare search for them?
Guides at Sacha Lodge
On average, there are three staff members on duty for every two guests at the lodge. Sacha Lodge's guests are divided into small groups of six for activities, each of which are led by two guides. One is a native guide, raised in the area and with expert knowledge of the rainforest's medicinal and other useful plants. This guide will often share stories from local culture, and lead the way with accustomed eyes that are incredible for spotting the jungle's hidden creatures. The second guide to accompany each group is a bilingual naturalist, who has been educated in the biology and ecology of the rainforest. The naturalists come from different countries and backgrounds, and they will translate for the native guides as well as share their own scientific knowledge about any plants and animals you may encounter.
For birdwatchers, Sacha Lodge also provides bird specialist guides upon request. These guides know the best spots for the hard-to-find species, and can easily identify species by both sight and sound. If ornithology is to be the focus of your trip, please be sure to request a bird specialist guide in advance to make sure he or she is there when you arrive!
In case of emergency, both cellular telephone (BellSouth) and radio communications are available from the lodge. In addition, each of our guides maintains permanent radio contact with the lodge during all excursions and activities. In case of a serious injury or illness, there is a modern medical center located in 20-minute reach of Sacha Lodge.
Accommodations at Sacha Lodge
Each of the 26 rooms at Sacha Lodge include single, double and (upon request) triple accommodations, with a private bathroom with flushing toilet and hot shower. All cabins are screened against insects, and contain ceiling fans above the beds. During free time, visitors may overlook the jungle from hammocks and often report seeing wild fauna such as toucans, agoutis and monkeys right from their own cabin! Biodegradable soaps and shampoos are provided. Although all runoff water is treated with ozone, Sacha Lodge recommends the use of these amenities as an extra measure to protect the environment. You will also be provided with fresh towels each day. Laundry service is available at an added cost.