The spectacular and fantastic wildlife of the Aquicuana Reserve represents the perfect destination for travelers who are looking to get off the beaten path in search of Bolivia’s unique flora and fauna.
The Aquicuana Reserve holds a great amount of biodiversity and protects this biodiversity from destruction of various kinds. One can find an incredible variety of birds, insects, mammals, reptiles and amphibians here, each having hundreds of varieties of species.
Our specialized expedition teams have been responsible for creating trails for different levels and with different durations. You can choose hiking trails of 1 hour, an hour and a half, or 2 hours. The walking tours will always be accompanied, by local guides. All of them live in the reserve. They have great knowledge about the flora and fauna in the reserve, as it is part of their culture and life in the communities. The routes include a canoe ride to Lake Aquicuana (San Jose) and its rich streams. A total immersion in nature that will not leave you indifferent.
Another way to submerge in the lungs of the planet is to practice sport fishing in the Aquicuana lake. Our boats are available for fishing activities with locals from the communities. Fishing with nets is prohibited and thus you can find a huge diversity of aquatic species such as the Pacú (Myleus pacu), the Paiche(Arapaima Gigas), Dorado (Salminus Brasiliensi), the Tucunaré (Cichla Ocellaris) or the Surubí (Pseudoplatystoma) and also piranhas and many other species. If you want to fish, you can choose between the more traditional harpoon or the classic fishing line. It is an incredible opportunity to learn techniques and to experience certain areas of San José lake dedicated to fishing. Furthermore, you will get to know the locals and can get a better understanding of their way of living.
You can bring your own fishing equipment or rent one here. With the fishing activity, you can camp on the shores of the lake and streams and be guided. The duration depends on the needs of each traveller.
Birding is essentially the study of birds and their behaviors in their natural environment. Furthermore, it includes the observation of protected areas, monitoring of populations and migrations. Both professionals and students’ ornithologists, bird lovers and birding amateurs play a key role in the research we facilitate to extend the quantity and quality of knowledge that we possess.
The 20,000-hectare Aquicuana Reserve is the ideal place for anyone that enjoys bird watching, whether professional or amateur. Indeed, there are more than 330 species of birds that have been registered. This includes several primary registrations with the Beni Department in northern Bolivia. With the help of both local and international volunteers and researchers, we hope to add more species to the list in the future – we estimate that there are more than 350 in total.
Birdwatching in the Reserve
Without a doubt, birds are the key strength of the Aquicuana Reserve. Thanks to biologist, Vincent Vos’ work, and with the help of our team, we have registered more than 330 birds in the Aquicuana Reserve. The Aquicuana Reserve offers you the possibility of productive, bird watching expeditions in the extremely diverse rainforests of northern Bolivia. Its high diversity of multiple varieties of natural habitats offers the right program for both professional birders and people with little experience. We are certain to have the right fit for you.
This activity is based on the explanation of the experienced biologist Vincent Vos, who has created a detailed itinerary to see a maximum of birds.
Within the many species of birds that you will possibly encounter during your stay in the Aquicuana Reserve, you might also have the chance to witness unique species such as the endangered White-throated Toucan or Tororoi. The latter is also known as the Masked Antpitta (Hylopezus auricularis), and is a rare endemic species classified as vulnerable by IUCN and registered in multiple different locations of the Reserve. This bird was classified among the endangered species because of the loss of its habitat, that is the reason why the reserve is essential since it is the only place where it can be found.
Discover the physical healing, the high level of consciousness that you can reach and the personal transformations in our spiritual retreat centre in Pisatahua. You should know that the retreats include shamans, local healers and ceremonies with ayahuasca, which is an old visionary drink of the jungle. The effects of this drink include visual stimulation and a deep psychological introspection.
The retreat also includes other medicinal plants, yoga classes, meditation and permaculture. The retreats can go from a few days to a complete month. We recommend that you contact us with enough time to consult the availabilities and to be able to have a personalized retreat.
Where are the guests staying during the retreat? All our guests are accommodated in cabins overlooking the lake with private bathroom and shower. It is certainly a unique environment with immense natural beauty. For more information on the spiritual retreat, click on the following link: http://pisatahua.org/
The jungle is in a unique place to sleep during the night, and with the opportunity to spend one or more nights in a wooden cabin in the middle of the Amazonian jungle you can experience it for yourself. All the cabins have been designed according to local construction techniques, and they maintain the rustic attractiveness of a cabin in the jungle, without sacrificing many of the comforts of a modern hotel.
The cabins are insulated, spacious and fully furnished with private bathrooms, washbasins and showers. In addition, each cabin has two single beds or one double bed, shelves, solar-powered lighting, bedside tables, and interior hammock, a desk, chairs and drinking water. We offer clean bedding, towels and laundry service.
The cabins have a privileged location facing the lake with huge windows to maximize the ventilation and the views of the Aquicuana reserve.
If you prefer camping within the Aquicuana reserve, you can settle in one of the specially designed camping areas where you will be protected. You can bring your own tent, or you can rent one directly on the reservation. All our tents have a capacity for 4 people and include, a camping kit with sleeping bag, mosquito net and camping pad.
You also have the opportunity to meet the native families who live in the Aquicuana reserve, to discover how they live, their customs, work and traditions. We can organize small tours of the communities to get to know the people, and have the possibility to know each other and exchange experiences, and you can also have lunch together.
Enjoy the wonderful Amazonian landscapes aboard of a boat. Navigate the San José Lake and get closer to the nature. We can adapt your visit according to your wishes. You can choose to sail the morning to see bird activities at sunrise time, or in the evening to observe the caimans. You have also the possibility to combine those two tours.
With close to 100.000 inhabitants Riberalta is the largest city of the Bolivian Amazon. It’s situated in the north of the Beni department at the confluence of the Rivers Beni and Madre de Dios and although deforestation and degradation have been increasing still provides access to a large number of interesting herping sites.
Our biologist has discovered three interesting herping sites within the municipality of Riberalta, each with its own characteristics.