4 Day / 3 Night Program
The adventure begins at around 08:00 am at one of the main hotels in Quito, when you will be collected by Mashpi transportation for your journey to the northwest corner of the Metropolitan District of Quito (view map). The road passes along the western flank of the Andes next to the “Middle of the World” (“La Mitad del Mundo”) which marks the equatorial line. We then continue westwards, downhill, following the course of the Rio Blanco, watching as the vegetation changes with every significant drop in altitude. After passing the town of Nanegalito, we head northwest, along winding country roads, passing the archaeological site of Tulipe and various farming communities. We arrive at the Lodge mid-morning.
Your time with us at Mashpi is your own to experience. With the help of our expedition staff, you can choose from any of the explorations on offer, always accompanied by a University-graduate naturalist guide and an experienced local guide – all at your own pace. On your arrival day, you will plan your activities with the team and receive a talk about Mashpi and all its wonders.
After enjoying lunch and a rest, you’ll head out in the afternoon for your activity, perhaps an introductory walk through our magical forest along trails that wind around roots and trees, festooned with orchids, lianas and bromelidas.
When darkness falls, a new troupe of creatures emerges: your guides will accompany you in search out tiny (and some transparent!) frogs, snakes, insects and even tarantulas during a Night Walk.
The next day might begin at first light on the panoramic terrace, watching – and hearing – a menagerie of birds stirring around the Lodge.
After breakfast, you could hike towards a waterfall, bathing in the tremendous crash of water, or perhaps head to the Hummingbird Garden.
Another option is to discover the winged wonders of the Life Centre’s butterflies.
After lunch, how about pedalling between two points of the forest around 200 m (655 ft) apart on the aerial Sky Bike, followed by a climb up the Observation Tower to take in the Reserve in its entirety and watch the sun go down behind the clouds…
For the evening, we have prepared a series of different lectures such as the “Secret Wildlife of Mashpi: the Camera Trap Project,” “The Choco: a Biological Hotspot” about the formation and diversity of the Chocó, or about our scientific research projects. The lectures will be given by one of our naturalists or our resident biologist at 7:30 p.m.
You might want to save the best to last, on your last morning: a hike through the forest followed by gliding above and through the forest canopy aboard our amazing and unique Dragonfly aerial cable car… A truly incredible experience.
Of course, you could also explore more forest trails, head to a different waterfall or find a nook to let the whole experience sink in.
After a delicious lunch, our transport takes you back to Quito in the afternoon.
- Transfer in (shared basis) from four hotels in Quito: Swissotel, JW Marriott, Hilton and Casa Gangotena, includes a visit to Tulipe archaeological site
- Transfer out (shared basis) to four hotels in Quito: Casa Gangotena, Hilton, JW Marriott and Swissotel.
- Hotel accommodation
- All meals at the Lodge
- Guided activities and excursions within the Reserve: walks, birdwatching and nature encounters, Sky Bike, Life Centre, waterfalls and Hummingbird Garden.
- Unlimited soft drinks
- Use of rain ponchos and rubber boots
- Dragonfly: $40 + taxes per person per stay for all activities that incorporate this service; $20 + taxes per child under the age of 12.
- Spa treatments
- Alcoholic drinks
- Taxes and service charge, currently: 12% Value Added Tax, 10% Service Charge
- Gratuities, tips and personal expenses