Refugio Amazonas

The Lodge

Refugio Amazonas is a simple, 24 room lodge located in a 120-hectare private reserve surrounded by the community of Condenado, 3 hours by boat from the nearest town, Puerto Maldonado, and 2 hours up-river from Posada Amazonas. Puerto Maldonado can be reached in 30 minutes on daily commercial flights from Cusco and 90 minutes from Lima. Thanks to its location in the Tambopata National Reserve buffer zone, Refugio Amazonas is an excellent option for introductory nature tours and the ideal stepping stone for longer explorations to the Tambopata Research Center. Refugio Amazonas plays an important role in coalescing the communities around it to support the conservation of the buffer adjacent to the Tambopata National Reserve. By working together with the surrounding river communities a more effective protective belt can be established to shield the fragile habitat bordering onto the Tambopata Reserve. Involving the communities in the project provides alternative sources of income that are based on conservation and sustainable development rather than on exploitation, poaching or habitat destruction.

Comfort Room

Comfort rooms are 45 square meters and have an open verandah that looks out into a wild tropical rainforest reserve. They are available as singles, doubles or twins, and each is equipped with a mosquito net over large, comfortable beds, two hypoallergenic pillows per person, a hammock, and a reading table.

Suite Rooms

Experience a bit of extra comfort and quality by staying in one of the premium rooms.  Each of these beautiful new rooms features authentic Ese-Eja décor that has been crafted by artists from the local indigenous community, beautifully varnished tropical hardwood floors and the same intimate view of the surrounding rainforest as the other rooms.

Equipped with a large, luxurious bed, hypoallergenic pillows, ceiling fans, electricity, and other fine amenities in the middle of the jungle.

Superior Rooms

Superior rooms are built with local materials such as tropical hardwoods, palms, bamboo, and adobe. Monkeys, many species of birds, frogs, and other rainforest wildlife are often visible from our signature windowless verandahs. Those same verandahs also add comfort with excellent ventilation. Our Superior Rooms are available as doubles or triples and come equipped with mosquito nets for the beds and have spacious private bathrooms with hot water. Numerous kerosene lamps and candles provide soft lighting. Electricity and internet are just a short walk to the common areas of the lodge.

NEW! Activities à la carte!

In order to offer the greatest flexibility, Refugio Amazonas now offers activities ‘à la carte’, so you can choose all your day’s adventures according to your interests and abilities. As some activities are very popular, we recommend that you make your preferred choices at the time of booking, so that we can reserve a spot for you.

Farm Visit

Opposite to the lodge, on the other side of the river, we visit a family-owned farm that is managed by the charismatic Don Manuel from the neighboring community of Condenado. He grows a variety of popular and as well as little known Amazonian crops – just about every plant and tree you see has a story and serves a purpose.

Duration: 3h

Takes place in the morning or in the afternoon.

Canopy Tower

Let’s get to the top and have an eagle’s view of the forest. A 30-minute hike from Refugio Amazonas leads to a 25-meter scaffolding canopy tower. A banister staircase leads up through the middle and provides safe access to the platforms above. The tower has been built upon high ground, thus increasing your views of seemingly continuous primary forest that extends towards the Tambopata National Reserve. From here, views of mixed species canopy flocks, as well as toucans, macaws, and raptors are likely.

Duration: 1 h

Takes place early morning, before breakfast

Mountain Biking

If you like action, this is a great way to explore and experience the beauty and excitement of the rainforest along ten kilometers of trails. We provide a GT mountain bike, helmet and cycling gear, water bottle, and your very own mountain bike guide..

Mammal Clay Lick

Mammals feed on clay, too, and a peccary clay lick lies just 20 minutes on foot from Refugio Amazonas. These wild rainforest pigs show up in herds of five to twenty individuals to eat clay in the late morning. Chances of spotting them are rare but well worth the short hike. Other wildlife also shows up sometimes, including deer, guans, and parakeets. This area has also sometimes featured the nest of the rare Harpy Eagle.

Duration: 1h

Takes place in the morning or afternoon

Oxbow Lake Visit

A 45-minute hike through terra firma rainforest brings us to an ‘aguaje palm swamp’ and the Condenado oxbow lake. Oxbow lakes are amazing habitats, and we’ll have the opportunity to experience one while paddling a traditional canoe or catamaran on Condenado Lake. We will look for lakeside wildlife such as big fish, lots of birds, colorful butterflies, and more, while also hoping to see rare Giant Otters. You will also be rewarded with overhead sightings of macaws and beautiful jungle skies.

Duration: half-day

Takes place in the morning or afternoon

The Children’s Rainforest Trail

Children’s activity

Learn about the rainforest from a different perspective. ‘Ania & The World´s Voice’ is an exciting journey designed for children, ages 4 to 10 years. We will travel with our guides on a short but challenging walk where we follow maps, solve riddles, and find clues that will lead to the “treasure of Ania”. The path includes a visit to the houses of Ania and Tawa, the grandfather of the woods. Searching for the “lost Brazil nut”, the city of ants and other fun games teaches children how people live in the rainforest, why we need to preserve it and leaves us with a valuable message: “A child born in the jungle fills our hearts with hope.” The concept and history of this are all registered in the name of ANIA, a nonprofit organization with a mission to create 100,000 acres of “Lands of Children” – private, protected areas managed for children.

Overlook Trail

This 2 km trail will take us along the Tambopata River for a great overview. We will show you the differences between a terra firme forest and a secondary forest as we pass through both habitats. We will also take breaks at benches where we can watch the Tambopata River on its journey through the Amazonian lowlands.

Duration: 2h

Takes place in the morning or afternoon

Brazil Nut Trail and Camp

Refugio Amazonas is located in a Brazil Nut forest. This hike is a beautiful old growth patch of Brazil Nut forest that has been harvested for decades (if not centuries), where the remains of a camp, used two months a year by Brazil Nut gatherers, can still be experienced. We will demonstrate the whole process of the rain forest’s only sustainably harvested product, from collection to transportation, drying, and on to the products we consume.

Duration: 1h30min

takes place in the morning or afternoon

Rainforest Tattoo

Children’s activity

Getting tattooed in the Rainforest? No worries, we´ll prepare a paste from a fruit called “huito”, and achiote or other natural dies to draw tattoos on ourselves. We can draw different shapes of animals or other patterns associated with the forest. They only last a few days.

Duration: 1h30min

Takes place in the morning or afternoon

Tambopata Aerobotany

Why point to the stars when you can reach the canopy! Experience the incredible diversity of Amazonian trees and plants from the air! Throw a drone from a 35-meter tall scaffolding tower and get an incomparable birds-eye view of the canopy! This canopy tower experience is a quick 20-minute walk from the lodge and provides access to the tops of huge rainforest trees. We will get the chance to observe the researchers as they program the drones for their daily route, and we will get unique and amazing pictures and videos of the canopy from the air!

Duration: 1h

Takes place in the afternoon

AmazonCam Tambopata

We are building a Big Grid to answer Big Questions. Become a researcher and explore the world of camera traps and the amazing wildlife they reveal’ it’s a Big Neighborhood! We will walk for about 20 minutes to the vicinity of the mammal clay lick, a favorite spot for many animals! We will help researchers collect the data from the camera traps and install some new ones! We will try them and make sure they are working correctly, and on the way back to the lodge, we will get to see what we got on the cameras!

Duration: 1h30min

Takes place in the afternoon

Sunset Cruise

Sunset in the jungle is one of nature’s most beautiful spectacles, and one of the best places to enjoy them is from a boat on the Tambopata River. In the afternoon, your guide will take you to a boat for an easy-going, two-hour ride on the Tambopata. Your guide will talk about the dynamics of this Amazonian river as you watch for rainforest wildlife and see macaws fly overhead, before enjoying the jungle sunset.

Duration: 1h30min

Takes place in the afternoon

Discover a new species

Help us reveal nature’s wonders, become a scientist and help us discover new species! There is an amazing world of diversity awaiting exploration! We will meet the resident research team in the lobby for a brief explanation of the types of species we will be looking for, and how to identify them. They will give us the appropriate equipment necessary for collecting, and we will walk around 15 minutes from the lodge to the light trap where an incredible variety of insects will be waiting for us. We will look for and collect certain types of insects, and, if we are lucky, we may even discover a new species!

Duration: 1h30min

Takes place at night

Ethnobotanical Tour

In the Amazon, most medicines come from medicinal plants. On this trail, we will find a diversity of plants and trees that are used by the local people for a variety of purposes. We‘ll learn about the medicinal (and other) uses of Ayahuasca, Ajo-Sacha, Yuca de Venado, Uña de Gato, Charcot-Sacha, and Para-Para among several others.

Duration: 2h30min

Takes place in the morning or afternoon

Night Walk

The rainforest comes alive again at night. This is the best time to see a bizarre and beautiful world of sounds, frogs, insects, night skies, and other nocturnal animals. Your guide will take you on a trail near the lodge for an hour and a half exciting hike into the night of the Amazon rainforest.

Duration: 1h

Takes place at night

Tambopata National Reserve Lecture

Nightly lectures prepared by the staff of Refugio Amazonas cover conservation threats, opportunities, and projects in the Tambopata National Reserve.

Duration: 1h

Takes place before dinner

Circle of Fire

Children’s activity

As a prelude to the Ania trail activities that will take place with our specially trained children’s guide, we head towards the circle of fire. A series of lights will guide us on a path that leads through the forest and ends at the circle of fire. This is where the house of Tawa, the ancient healer, is located. The house is filled with magic potions and extracts prepared from plants of the forest. There, we learn about the story and characters from “Ania and the Voice of the World”, as we sit and listen to our guide. This is also the starting point for the adventure that awaits us in our next child activity.

Duration: 1h

Takes place at night

Parakeet Clay Lick:

A fifteen minutes boat ride and sixty minutes hike from Refugio Amazonas will take us to a completely different clay lick used both by parrots and parakeets. We will watch from a blind as parrots and parakeets descend to ingest the clay on a bank. Species such as Dusky headed and Cobalt-winged Parakeets come to this clay lick. With a bit of luck, we will also see some or all of the following species in the early morning rush: Mealy and Yellow-crowned Amazons, Blue-headed Pionus, Chestnut-fronted (Severa’s) Macaw, and Orange-cheeked (Barraband`s) Parrot. We visit the lick at dawn, when parrots are most active, or in midmorning or early afternoon.

Duration: half-day

Takes place early morning

Chuncho Macaw Claylick Expeditions

Since Tambopata is the world’s best hot spot for macaws, this is a “must-do” on every itinerary. Take a morning trip to the Tambopata national reserve to visit one of the famous macaw clay licks. The two-hour boat ride from the lodge and into the national reserve also offers outstanding opportunities for seeing wildlife. This clay lick is often visited by three species of large colorful macaws, and many other parrots, and parakeets. Your guide will help you identify the birds seen at the clay lick, as well as other wildlife there and along the river. Binoculars and a provided spotting scope will take you that much closer to the wildlife.

Duration: half-day

Starts early in the morning. Breakfast on site

Rates in 2020

Rates are per person/per night, based on double occupancy. For single or triple rates, please inquire.

Flights from Lima to Puerto Maldonado depart from Jorge Chavez airport’s domestic terminal and take about 3 hours. Most flights stop in Cuzco before continuing to Puerto Maldonado. Flights from Cusco depart from the domestic terminal of Velasco Astete airport and take around 45 minutes.
  • Transfer-in (From Puerto Maldonado to Lodge):  daily at 13:00 and 14:00
  • Transfer-out (Lodge to Puerto Maldonado): daily at 07:00 and 08:00
Transfer time takes about 2 hours. Thus, it is important to schedule flights accordingly – the arrival flight should reach Puerto Maldonado before 2 pm and the departure flight should not be scheduled before midday. We do not take responsibility for any delays.
  • Lodge accommodations based on double occupancy
  • All scheduled land and river transportation
  • All transfers
  • All scheduled excursions with English-speaking guide services
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary, B=Breakfast; L=Lunch; D=Dinner.
  • US$13 reserve entrance fee
  • International or domestic airfares,
  • Airport departure taxes or visa fees
  • Excess baggage charges,
  • Additional nights during the trip due to flight cancellations
  • Alcoholic beverages, bottled water, or snacks,
  • Insurance of any kind,
  • Extras such as:
    Phone calls,
    Radio calls or messages,
    Reconfirmation of flights
    and items of personal nature.

When is the dry season?: Although it can rain at any time of the year, the Tambopata region tends to be drier from May until October. The rains start up in earnest in November and continue until April with the wettest months usually being November and December. During the dry season, trails aren’t as muddy, so chances are activities won’t be affected by rain and more macaws and parrots can be seen on the clay licks. On the other hand, during the dry season, it is much hotter and steamier, there is less bird activity on sunny days, it is more difficult to find amphibians, and more river transports take longer due to low water levels.

Tambopata during the wet season: Expect a lot of rain, and fewer fellow ecotourists. Usually, it rains in the afternoon, while mornings are a little cooler and cloudy. There may be higher bird activity due to the cloudy weather. The ponds and temporary wetlands that form at this time of the year in the rainforest are excellent sites for nature observation, especially for finding reptiles and amphibians.

Wildlife observation: No month is better than any other for spotting wildlife. Different conditions are favourable for different animals. While parrots and macaws tend to visit the clay lick more during the dry season, other animals come and go no matter what time of the year it is. A much bigger factor for seeing Amazonian wildlife is the guide’s level of experience and training.

Spotting monkeys: If you visit lodges such as the Tambopata Research Center, Refugio Amazonas, or Posada Amazonas, you have a very good chance of seeing several monkey species at any time of the year. The rollicking calls of Dusky Titis echo from vine tangles, Red Howler Monkeys call from the canopy, and troops of Squirrel Monkeys roam through secondary growth forest near oxbow lakes. Black Spider Monkeys may be a bit easier to find during the wet season because it’s usually easier to locate the fruiting trees they feed on, but a good guide will increase your chances of seeing them no matter what time of year it is.

4d/3n 5d/4n
Superior Room US$1824 US$2431
Comfort Room US$1944 US$2592
Suite Room US$2232 US$2976