Like a ship’s prow, our viewing platform juts out over the forest and provides the ideal space to immerse yourself in the world of Mashpi. You’ll be left in awe with the view and mesmerized by the calls of the birds and the dance of nearby butterflies.
Located an easy 20-minute walk from the Lodge, the Life Center is one of the most magical places in the Reserve. Watch tayras and tropical birds come to feed as you relax or breakfast on the wooden deck, feeling at one with nature. You can also learn about the metamorphosis of the different species of butterflies that inhabit the reserve.
Our laboratory is the home of investigation projects that are carried out within the Mashpi Reserve, manned by our resident Wildlife Project Coordinator. Here, both young and old can learn more about past and ongoing scientific projects that are carried out by our team and guest researchers. We even have a special area here that’s designed for children, with several activities to engage young minds.
Offering a range of beauty treatments, massages, a hot tub and a space for yoga, our spa allows you to indulge your senses and liberate your body from tension. It truly gives you the perfect chance to reconnect with the essence of nature right here among the forest and clouds. Our two massage rooms enjoy a backdrop of boundless beauty that can be admired through their glass windows, while our Samay Wellness Center close to the lodge is the ideal space to disconnect.
Our small boutique sells a variety of books, guides, clothes and souvenirs as well as toiletries and other essentials for guests. Treat yourself, friends and/or family to fragrant essential oils, award-winning Ecuadorian chocolate or a one-of-a-kind shirt.
An extensive library of books awaits in the Expedition Room on the first floor. The space is also used by our Naturalist Guides for activity briefings and by our science team for presentations, the latter of which involve sharing discoveries about the forest and our conservation efforts.
The adventure begins at around 08:30 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. 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 at noon.
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.
We return to the hotel for check out at 11:00 a.m. Our transfer leaves Mashpi Lodge at 11:30 a.m. During your trip back to Quito, you’ll get to enjoy a meal before ariving to your hotel.