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“Can't recommend highly enough” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Arajuno Jungle Lodge

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Arajuno Jungle Lodge
adjacent to the Jatun Sacha Biological Field Station, Quito, Ecuador   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #15 of 130 Specialty lodging in Quito
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Can't recommend highly enough”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

I came to Tom's little slice of paradise as part of an Overland trip and it has easily been the highlight of my travels thus far. The lodge itself is spectacular, rooms are spacious, clean and comfortable. The communal area has heaps of hammocks, couches and long tables that make socializing so easy. Jungle trek with William was awesome as we got to try local jungle delicacies such as ants, bark and raw cacao. Tom's family made the most incredible food for us at every meal and it was some of the more traditional food we were able to find in Ecuador. You're crazy if you come to Ecuador and don't experience this!

Room Tip: There are a range of bunk dorm rooms and double rooms. All are magnificent though
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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21 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Waltham, Massachusetts, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2013

We wanted to experience the Rain Forest and Jungle area in Ecuador and so many of the places we looked at said they were eco-friendly. I started wondering exactly how eco-friendly they could be if they were flying people into the amazon region in small planes... I didn't want to go somewhere that would add to the demise of the rain forest in any way.

Tom's place, aside from being truly breathtakingly beautiful, is actually it's own little sustainable eco-system that is totally in tune with the Rain Forest/Jungle environment. An ex-Peace Corps volunteer, Tom is totally invested in and dedicated to the indigenous peoples of the area, the flora and fauna. We had a wonderful time and ended up feeling like Tom and his wife were old friends by the time we left.

The rooms were clean, the beds were very comfortable to sleep in, the staff was lovely, the food was amazing and the prices were more than reasonable. We loved learning about Tom's conservation efforts - repopulating the turtles in the river, farming fish - as well as tubing, rafting, visiting with the animals and plants. Can't wait to go back and visit again!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Cleveland, Ohio
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2013

Tom was very accommodating to our group's needs. We had an excellent trip in such a short period of time. Would highly recommend to anyone seeking more adventurous jungle lodging. His property is amazing, it felt like home, he was open to anything we wanted to try or experience. All meals were prepared by his wife who is an awesome cook & they even shared recipes! Tom is very in tuned with the local community needs and his property is very eco friendly. Will be returning...

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cleveland, Ohio, United States
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

A little hard to get to, but it was well worth the trip. Very friendly staff and outstanding local meals. I felt like being invited into a friends home and them sharing their lift\e and experiences. If you want to get away, this is the place. I highly recommend and definitely want to go back and visit again, staying longer next time.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntington, West Virginia
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2012 via mobile

My wife and I actually decided to spend our honeymoon in Ecuador specifically because of what we read about this lodge online. It appeared to be a sustainable and environmentally responsible place while offering an exciting and relaxing stay in the Amazon rainforest. The food was great, the suite we were in was quaint and fun, and getting to know that owner, Tom, was nice as we were able to hear about his preservation efforts. He and his wife make a nice and welcoming team.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boulder, Colorado
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2012

It is always great to see the work done by other Peace Corps volunteers and Tom Larson, owner of the Arajuno Jungle Lodge, has not only built a sustainable lodge, but is doing incredible work with the local people and flora and fauna. I discovered the lodge based on a recommendation by a neighbor who takes Outward Bound trips to Ecuador and stays at Arajuno Jungle Lodge.

Tom was very responsive to emails and a great host while we were there (and not just because I too had been a Peace Corps volunteer). Arajuno Jungle Lodge is located 15 miles from Tena, Ecuador, and you get there via a taxi or bus ride from Tena and then a 5 minute canoe ride from the Arajuno bridge.

My friend and I booked the deluxe jungle and rafting adventure (4 days/3 nights) and had we known how relaxing and serene it is at Arajuno Jungle Lodge, we would have stayed longer.

Tom took us on a tour of the area including the man-made ponds where he is bringing back river turtles and garden for medicinal plants. The next day, we did a four hour tour with Octavio on Tom's 200 ha (primary and secondary forests) and then took the motorized canoe up the Arajuno River and floated on inner tubes down to the lodge.

The next day Tom took us a wildlife santuary where we saw all sorts of animals and birds we wouldn't see otherwise.

The last day we went white water rafting with Rios Ecuador on River Napo which was an amazing day and highly recommended.

Tom's wife does most of the cooking and the food is fantastic - fresh, local, and healthy!

The bungalows are basic but comfortable. We stayed in a bungalow with 3 sets of bunk beds with mosquito nets and a bathroom with flush toilet and shower (warm showers are all you need in the Amazon). There is minimal lighting in the bungalow as the lights are powered by solar and energy is stored in batteries so we just used our headlamps at night. And it is really, really dark in the Amazon. I couldn't even see my hand in front of my face at night!

The best part at night is hearing the symphony of insects and bamboo rat at night. It was truly a memorable experiene and I hope to return again.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Britain around the world
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2012

I have taken a number of groups to Aranjuno Jungle Lodge and had nothing but exceptional experiences everytime. The work that Tom does with yellow spotted turtles and working alongside local communities to reduce dynamite fishing is really incredible, and he always educates people about the work he does and ensures you understand just what a difference you make as an individual, by contributing to his cause.

A stay at the Aranjuno Jungle Lodge teaches our students the importance of conservation and the difference that an individual can make. Make no mistake, the work is hard, but it endeavours to show us that we have to sweat a bit to make a difference, and it is more than compensated for in the food and facilities provided at the Lodge.

I would recommend a stay at AJL to anyone - pack a set of work gloves and get stuck in!!

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Arajuno Jungle Lodge

Address: adjacent to the Jatun Sacha Biological Field Station, Quito, Ecuador
Location: Ecuador > Pichincha Province > Quito
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 130 Specialty lodging in Quito

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