Last Updated on November 20, 2022

Imagine swaying in a hammock with a book while listening to chirping birds and sometimes the pitter-patter of rain while waiting for your next activity or meal. Or later in the evening, hearing the faint cluck or hoot coming from a night monkey.

It’s easy to recharge and relax at Amazonia Expeditions Tahuayo Lodge in the heart of the Peruvian Amazon. This rustic Peruvian Amazon lodge is suitable for solo travelers, families, friends, and even school groups.

Getting Here

Guests take flights from Lima, Peru to Iquitos, and are then transported to the Iquitos docks. After arriving at the Amazonia Expeditions office, a three-hour boat ride takes passengers to the Tahuayo Peruvian Amazon lodge. I recommend travelers arrive before 11 am on the morning they are checking into the lodge because of the long boat ride. If luck is on your side on the way, you may even spot those unique pink-tailed dolphins.

Arriving at the Amazonian Lodge

Upon arrival, I was greeted with friendly smiles from staff and my guide, Javier, who would be with me for the duration of my four-day stay at the lodge. He explained that I had the choice to do as much or as little as possible during my stay. After a tour of the lodge, I was introduced to all the activity options.

About the Lodge

A sitting area inside the dining room. Photo by Erin Coyle.
A sitting area inside the dining room. Photo by Erin Coyle.

The Tahuayo Lodge is one of the only Rainforest Alliance Certified lodges in the Amazon Rainforest, one of the world’s most wildlife-rich biodiverse areas. This is not a hotel or a resort in the traditional sense, but a comfortable place from which to explore the rainforest and feel connected to nature. Prices include accommodations, all transfers, a private guide, excursions, and meals. The lodge has modern plumbing, basic gear, WiFi on site (unless you completely want to unplug) and an available laundry.

Bedrooms at the Peruvian Amazon lodge are simple private or group setups with wooden rocking chairs and mosquito netting surround the beds. The lodge reminds me of being back at camp as a kid because of the wooden cabins and rustic look and feel.

Tahuayo also sports a hammock room and a screened-in porch reading room. The spacious dining room also contains a library of plant and species books. Wooden chairs with red cushions invite guests to stay awhile to read or research.

Another ideal place to relax is on the outdoor covered porch overlooking the water. There is also an Amazon Research Center another two hours away by boat. It’s best to stay here for a few days if you can come to the Amazon for a six-to-seven-day visit.

You can’t beat the view from the covered porch. Photo by Erin Coyle

Meals at Tahuayo Lodge

You will not go hungry when staying at the lodge. The on-site chef prepares a buffet breakfast, lunch, and dinner, all served at set times. Food types ranges from quinoa porridge to Causa – a potato stuffed with vegetables or fish. It tasted like spinach mashed potatoes with a purple and white sauce drizzled on top, reminding me of a sweet mole sauce. It was delicious. To my delight, the chef even grilled the Pacu fish I caught one morning.

Activities Abound

Guests have so many activity options to choose from. These include fishing, boat rides to spot otters and dolphins, longer walks inside the rainforest, canopy ziplining to see the rainforest from a different perspective, pre-breakfast morning walks, night walks to spot tarantulas, or boat rides to see Caimans.

Shorter walks are usually between one to two hours, while longer walks are six to eight hours and generally include a short boat ride back to the starting point. This Peruvian Amazon lodge also offers a visit to the nearby community. One not to miss is El Chino, a mere five-minute boat ride away.

El Chino Community

A woman in El Chino is making a place mat. Photo by Erin Coyle.
A woman in El Chino is making a place mat. Photo by Erin Coyle.

The lodge owner’s wife started the Angels of the Amazon charity to support El Chino, the community of 200 people, along with other nearby communities. They provide scholarships to kids for university and school uniforms for the children. The charity built a clinic in another community so more residents could access healthcare. The organization has constructed a playground and partners with Be the Change to help improve area schools.

Women of the El Chino community women have a market where they sell their crafts like multi-colored hand-made wicker baskets.  

On an afternoon visit with another guest and our guides, we also saw paprika fruit, green on the outside with red seeds on the inside, reminding me of a pomegranate. The women use this fruit to dye the string for their textiles. One of the ladies was weaving a pink and purple multi-colored placemat and said it would take three days to make just one.

We walked around the village and saw the kindergarten, middle, and high school. A bridge was built linking the high school to the other side of the community where the teachers’ housing, schools, and family homes are located. I was impressed what the organization has done for El Chino and other local communities, and how they continue supporting them.

The Rainforest

Peru makes up 13% of the tropical Amazonian Rainforest that also includes Bolivia, Brazil, Columbia, Ecuador, French Guyana, Suriname, and Venezuela.

Surprisingly on my first afternoon walk I saw a night monkey (obviously nocturnal in nature) with large brown eyes. These simians are fruit eaters, and I also learned that they usually stay in groups of three to four.

My guide Javier spotted the monkey high in the tree. He looked no larger than the size of my hand, but I knew they were bigger. Javier would also make a howl or chirping sound to see if the animals would respond. On the walk, I was introduced to the native rainforest plants and trees. For example, Javier pointed out that green air plants have holes in them. It means they have pesticides and will eventually destroy the tree. The walk was so informative.

All the activities I chose on my Rainforest eco-adventure were fantastic!

Birdwatching is also a popular activity in the Peruvian Amazon with guided tours available.

I especially enjoyed seeing the rainforest from up high when ziplining, but also the night boat rides and walks were fascinating. With the lights off, the only sounds came from slight splashes of water and some croaking and chirping. Now and again, soft light appeared so we could look for animals.

My head started to play tricks on me when I started thinking about the movie Anaconda. These experienced guides have great eyes that can spot anything. As the boat was slowly glided down the river, and before we knew it, we were looking at a green Amazon tree frog wrapped around a branch, just chilling. These colorful amphibians help get rid of mosquitos.

During my night walk, I was fascinated by tropical ants marching in line, carrying small plants up the tree, often larger than them. Learning about the different species that reside here, I continued to be in awe of everything I was seeing. The guides are so knowledgeable and enthusiastic about their jobs, and that makes it even more special.

Why choose Tahuayo Lodge?

My guide, Javier explaining the different plants. Photo by Erin Coyle.
My guide, Javier explaining the different plants. Photo by Erin Coyle.

The lodge is a huge part of the Amazon and rainforest preservation. They are eco-friendly with only refillable water stations, no plastic bottles.

Solo travelers pay no additional costs as they do at other places, a huge plus for someone like me.

I had plenty of time to relax and disconnect from the real world and I slept like a baby while I was here.

It’s also easy to meet other guests as the lodge makes it convenient with its community spaces.  

Visiting the Peruvian Amazon

Tahuayo Lodge made me feel like family when I was staying here. It felt so good to disconnect and recharge in a natural tropical setting. Next time I’d to stay at the Amazon Research Center since I did not have time to visit this facility during my recent stay.

The fantastic Peruvian Amazon lodge staff, enthusiastic guides, my visit to El Chino, a talented chef creating local dishes, and the various species living in the Amazon and rainforest are all reasons to come here. I can’t wait for my next visit!

What do you think?

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  • Nancy Zaffaro
    November 28, 2022

    Great story! I also loved my stay at a lodge in the Amazon, and Erin is just the writer to bring the story of a stay in the unique part of the world to life!

    • Noreen Kompanik
      January 2, 2023

      So glad you like it, Nancy!