We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Exceeded expectations” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sacha Lodge

Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Save
You added Sacha Lodge to your Saves list
Sacha Lodge
4.5 of 5 Lodge   |   Napo River, Coca, Ecuador   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Coca
Edmonton, Canada
Top Contributor
72 reviews 72 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Exceeded expectations”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2012

I had the pleasure of staying at Sacha Lodge in October 2012. My guides (Paul and Pablo) were the best. Knowledgeable, helpful, fun and a pleasure to be with. The lodge accommodation was delightful and the food plentiful and varied. I would not hesitate to recommend Sacha Lodge to friends, family and anyone who might read this review.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

222 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    171
    39
    9
    3
    0
See reviews for
52
102
12
1
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (46)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
87 reviews 87 reviews
82 hotel reviews
Reviews in 76 cities Reviews in 76 cities
73 helpful votes 73 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2012

I booked a weekend at the lodge without much thought, It turned to be a nice weekend. Although you must be aware that this lodge focuses only on wildlife tours, they do not offer tours to the local indigene communities as other lodges do. So, if the wildlife is what you are going for then you are in the right place.

Just an observation though, I was surprised they did not offer complimentary coffee as all hotels and hostels in Ecuador do, especially when is "all included" program. They offer coffee only at breakfast and for the rest of the day you have to purchase it for $2.50 for a small cup or free instant coffee, really? Instant coffee, hmm, not that good...Also, I was surprised not to see fruits being offered, only a few with breakfast......

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Walnut Creek, CA (SF Bay Area)
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
113 helpful votes 113 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2012

There are some places in the world that absolutely personify ecotourism at its best. The Sacha Lodge is one of these places. Located on an absolutely pristine piece of land in the Napo Valley Region of Ecuador, this experience is one that should not be missed. There are four rainforest regions on Earth; Costa Rica (loosely defined and not nearly as remote), Borneo, Madagascar and the Amazon. Having visited lodges in three of the four regions, the Amazon takes the cake as the most enjoyable and unique.

Although rainforest takes up only about 11% of the Earth's surface, over 50% of every species on Earth lives there. There are actually 5 countries that comprise the rainforest region known as the Amazon. Ecuador, being the most bio-diverse country on Earth for its size, is fortunate enough to lie in a region mostly unexploited by industry sans the small amount of oil production. It takes advantage of this by offering some of the best lodges anywhere on Earth.

Like most rainforest lodges, Sacha offers 3 or 4 night programs. While this may not seem like a lot, I guarantee you will see almost everything you came for and with long days of daily activities combined heat and humidity, it will feel like more. Unlike the Borneo Rainforest Lodge which is reached via a 2 1/2 hour twisty turny 4 wheel drive road, Sacha is accessible only by boat. Most people arrive from Quito to the town of Coca via a 35 minute flight on Tame, a local Ecuadorian airline. You are met by a representative and given a small sandwich lunch. Then they drive you to the base of the river. Your luggage will be taken separately in waterproof bags by the satff. Coca is a funky town that popped up quickly for the benefit of the small oil industry. You can feel the local flair as you board a covered motorized canoe for the 90 minute trip upriver. Every single thing that comes in and out is taken there the same way as you and carried by hand. The ride is not particularly interesting except for a few egrets and you can nap because the time spent there is very active.

When you finally arrive, the journey is not over yet. You then hike on a mostly boardwalk trail for about 30 minutes. Even if it's been dry, I suggest hikers or Keens at the least because there will be some muddy spots. After the hike you reach a dock where you then get into another canoe and cross the beautiful lake that surrounds the lodge. You can swim in the lake during the free time with piranhas that don't bite. Upon arrival, you will be met by the staff and given a small snack and a little briefing. This lodge insists on breaking up the arriving groups into smaller groups of 6 (or less) for the duration of your stay. This can be good or bad. Our group consisted of one young and one middle age British couple and we all got along very well. But the other group had a rather boisterous and chubby single parent Aussie and his 12 year old son paired with a distinguished and slightly strange old British couple so he wasn't very happy about that.

The website says you can tell them any specific interests such as bird-watching but all we got was a small form to fill out and we think they group what looks like the most fit people together. The guide you get makes a huge difference. We HIGHLY RECOMMEND Andres Holguin Naranjo. He is not always there as he lives in Quito but please ask. He is a young, highly personable and very intelligent individual that takes a real pride in Ecuador. He's lived and worked in other places around the world including Alaska and we considered him a new friend (We friended him on Facebook)

After the briefing, they will show you to your cabins and ask you to meet in about an hour for a fitting of Wellington style boots. There are some days when you can get by with Keens or hikers but the trails are muddy so the boots come in very handy. They also provide excellent rain ponchos in the event of a downpour. The first activity will be in the late afternoon. One huge advantage over other rainforest lodges is the lake and its surrounding canals which reduces the amount of hiking and allows for optimum wildlife viewing which can be difficult from the floor. Although the itineraries vary, most are probably similar so I will briefly describe ours to give you an idea:

Day one:
2-3 hour canoe ride: We spotted a green viper which Andres said was a huge plus. Every group also gets a local indigenous guide along to help spot. Although the website calls them "naturalists", they are really just locals that know the area even better than the guide and speak little or no English. Ours was Wilson. Also spotted various caimans, the boisterous local birds known as "stinky turkeys" and some interesting little colorful frogs. After dinner: night canoe ride; saw an anaconda that almost jumped into the boat and a beautiful tiger heron

Day two:
Be warned: This trip is NOT for those that hate mornings. The will give you a 5:30 AM wakeup call (a knock on the door) and you start at 6 AM when the wildlife is most active. We hiked to the canopy walk. Theirs is easily the best one I've ever seen. Once at the platform, if it's clear, you have endless opportunities for wildlife viewing. We saw squirrel, capuchin, tamarind and titi monkeys scampering about (Howlers were heard but not seen). We also saw awesome toucans and a host of unusual birds whose name slips me. Also saw agoutis on the trail. After lunch: Another hike with interesting insects and the craziest bird sounds I ever heard and then to the best and most extensive butterfly garden I've ever seen. They send specimens all over the world. Evening: Night walk ; saw the large tarantulas, scorpions and spotted a toad the size of a small dog.

Day Three:
Morning: Took a boat ride to the national park entrance to visit a "parrot lick" where thousands of beautiful green birds lick the minerals. They think it's to aid digestion. Also spotted a big boa waiting to eat one of the small birds. Website says this is $20 USD but we were never charged. Afternoon: another hike and saw an awesome little owl, some termite nests and more monkeys. Went to the "tree house" for one of the best views of the area.

Cabins:
All about the same; reasonably sized with limited furnishings but ample space. All have a beautiful deck with hammock that you can spot wildlife from. The shower is good considering everything is driven by power generators. There is a safe and the bed is reasonably comfortable but firm. There are ceiling fans and you will be too tired to do much besides sleep anyway. You can't put paper products in the toilet in most places in Ecuador due to the inability of the plumbing to handle it.

Food:
Unlike some other lodges, meals are all served at the exact same time in the small but comfortable dining area; they will tell you when to be there. Upstairs is a bar; you pay the bill at the end. There is also a small gift shop. All meals were delicious and filling with almost every meal featuring chicken, pork, beef or seafood cooked a different way along with veggies, potatoes (4 kinds in Ecuador; all delicious), cold salads and desserts. Bring your own coffee if you need a caffeine boost; most of the world drinks instant Nescafe (I brought Starbucks Via packets). Breakfast is usually eggs, sausage, bacon and an omelets option and fruit. Lunches are a soup and a one large meat with sides and dinner is buffet style. On the last night they cooked a barbeque on the deck by the lake where Andres introduced everyone (he was obviously the lead and best guide) and summarized why we should educate the world on the perils of preserving the rainforest. On the last morning you get breakfast before the journey downriver. And don't forget to use the famous Ecuadorian hot sauce served everywhere. Like Korean kim-chee everyone in Ecuador has a different recipe


Staff:
Everyone at the lodge works very hard and goes above and beyond to make your stay as comfortable as possible. Ask if you need anything at all. Regarding tips, there is no set guideline and unlike the Galapagos Island cruises, they will not give you some cheesy speech about why and how much you should tip. You will want tip because they make your trip wonderful. On our way back, heavy rain caused the cancellation of our flight from Coca so Andres bought us all to a local restaurant and bought everyone lunch. He also guided us at the airport and ensured everyone was on their way. Top notch service from beginning to end

Summary:
This is a very professionally run lodge. It was founded by a Swiss businessman almost 20 years ago and his family still runs the operation. The land is all privately owned thus no chance of exploitation. If you want a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience something very few people get to see, I highly recommend the Amazon region. Rather than booking directly with the lodge, I recommend a 5 or 7 day Galapagos cruise combined with an rainforest trip and perhaps a few days to see the Andes region or coast if you have time. My choice: Quito based company (Columbus Travel; see galapagosilands.com for details). Salo, my wonderful representative, put together a fabulous 16 day itinerary that was flawless. Have fun and feel free to email us with any additional questions.

Room Tip: All cabins are about the same; some are a bit newer ; you will spend very little time in it anyway s...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2012 via mobile

Wow! That pretty much sums up our 4 day/3 night experience. First off, coordinating with the lodge to accommodate certain dates was a piece of cake. They provided me with all the necessary information prior to booking and were very quick to return emails. At the Quito Airport, we were met by a rep who helped us check in. At Coca, we were met by 3 other reps. So we never felt lost or out of sorts.

The lodge is absolutely beautiful. The rooms are comfortable and screened from bugs! Our guides, Andres and Elias, were so great and so informative. They really made sure we had a good time and saw a lot of wildlife. We saw over 20 species of birds, 4 species of monkeys, frogs, insects, a snake, a caiman, piranha, and a sloth. The food is really good. It really surprised me! Yummy salads and vinaigrettes! The aji sauces are also delish. And I really liked the desserts.

We had a great time!!

  • Stayed September 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Palm Beach, FL
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2012

This was a great introduction to the rainforest. It is much less scarier and milder than Hollywood would let you believe. Everything was organized extremely well: we were greeted at Quito airport by a representative of Sacha Lodge, who helped with airport check-in. The flight to Coca is short (45min) but the views are beautiful: huge volcanoes followed by a descent into the green, lush and flat rainforest. At Coca, a bus awaited us which took us to a house for simple lunch and boarding of a speed canoe. Long and wet ride down Napa river was exciting; we were not sure what we are getting ourselves into. There were three of us, a single lady, and two Australian couples in the canoe. Two hours later we reached the location where we disembarked and than tracked for half an hour through the forest. That was the first encounter of the wildlife: squirrel monkeys, insects, birds... We were already with out guide Aurelio who was young and new but very enthusiastic and very respectful of our desires, our expectations, and always very eager to make us feel comfortable. This was very important for us, traveling with an 8-year-old. After the track, we traveled across a lake with a canoe to finally reach the Lodge.
Lodge has a central area for eating, all of the meals are very good, food is both local and diverse, plenty of choices for even the most picky eaters. Rooms are in separate bungalows (two per bungalow), very "green" (no air condition, but built to be breezy and airy), and quite comfortable for middle-of-rainforest location. Every 4 tourists are assigned two guides: naturalist guide (Aurelio in our case) and a native guide (local native person with living knowledge of the area). We very extremely lucky that we we paired with the single lady from canoe as our forth tourist - she was great game for all the questions our daughter had - and with our guides. Our native guide was a middle-aged man, Ernesto, for whom it is obvious that he could easily and enjoyably survive in the forest on his own: he taught us about medicinal and spiritual uses of different plants, customs, spotted wild life that we would never be able to see without him, and he befriended our daughter and carved a gift from local wood for her!
Every day we had at least two or three activities. Our favorites were parrot lick, night walk (think: tarantulas and scorpion spiders!), kapok tree climb, and piranha fishing. My wife did NOT enjoy the canopy walk at all, and there is a question: why the walk when the kapok tree provides exactly the same experience without the scare?
Overall, it was a great experience, I am very happy we did it. We spent 3 nights/4 days there, and really loved it. We saw so much wild life, such a diversity and it was perfectly safe. We did not take any medication, no vaccination. We felt perfectly comfortable at all times. Our Australian friends were going crazy with their bird-loving naturalist guide (who was also ALWAYS at their side, including all meals), but our guides gave us space and respected our "down time". Souvenirs at the gift shop are well priced and we did not see such crafts anywhere else (Quito, Otavalo, etc) so go ahead, make a purchase.
Definitely, we would recommend this to families!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vienna, Austria
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

My husband , my two teenaged girls and I had the most wonderful stay at the Sacha Lodge. It was so perfectly organised!!!!They think of everything! The rooms are very comfortable and even have a safe and a dry box!!! The food was great and our excursions breathtaking!! We learned alot about the rainforest and had great fun and spectacular views on the canopy bird walk ( one of the only self-standing suspension canopy walkways in the world!). The girls really enjoyed fishing for piranhas and loved the great BBQ! We could have sat in the canoes all day just enjoying!! We will miss 'Hairy' - the tarantula, who liked to visit our balcony. The girls (originally afraid of spiders) just loved him - or was it a her? A dip in the beautiful lake is heaven after the jungle hikes!!!All in all a fabulous trip!!!!!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2012

Just returned from an extremely special spot in Ecuador. Sacha Lodge is perhaps one of the most magical places I have ever seen. I think my experience there might be my favorite journey ever. Sacha Lodge is very remote, difficult to get to and totally worth the extensive travel involved. Staff at Sacha are extremely professional and incredibly detail oriented. They do not miss a thing. What I enjoyed most was simply being away from everything and learning so much. Five days of exquisite beauty that are filled to the brim with physical challenges and educational insights. This is an excellent destination for children too. I actually met my 24 year old son there and he suddenly turned 9 years old again full of wonder and delight surrounding the profound beauty and awe of nature. Every day brought new sensory experiences. Begin the day with a perfect breakfast at 6 and in your wooden canoe by 7. Paddle out through the mist over the serene lake and begin your Amazon experience. Enjoy exotic birds, caimans, monkeys, butterflies, flowers and trees from your dreams. Hike and enjoy learning about plants in the jungle and their medicinal purposes. Return to the lodge and swim in the cool, clear lake and a have a communal lunch. After resting for 2 hours, begin your next adventure which might involve a hike, a climb, a visit to an exquisite tree house high in the sky or pretend you are a bird on the canopy walk. I am not a huge fan of heights but none of these sky hikes bothered me at all. Everything is safe and extremely well-maintained. Come back to the lodge tired, enjoy a hot shower and an amazing dinner with new friends. Perhaps you have a night hike or a night canoe ride with additional discoveries beyond your wildest dreams. Fall into bed exhausted and enjoy the sounds of the night symphony of Sacha with tree frogs and lightning bugs and other assorted sounds. This is a top notch eco-lodge that is highly organized. We had two fantastic guides; Gus and Pancho who deepened our experience well beyond our expectations. Keep in mind, this is not the Four Seasons. You will get dirty, messy, hot and tired. You will be covered in bug spray and sunscreen and you will be so happy about it. In our group of 3, none of us had any insect bites or any real problems. One night, I had some stomach trouble and the chef prepared some special tea of oregano and onion and I was magically better in the morning. I cannot say one negative thing about Sacha Lodge except how very sad I was to leave.

Room Tip: Rooms 9 and 10 are remote and lovely. You can see monkeys from the rear deck.
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Sacha Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Sacha Lodge

Address: Napo River, Coca, Ecuador
Location: Ecuador > Azuay Province > Coca
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Coca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Sacha Lodge 4.5*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
-300 mts Long canopy walk.-45 mts wooden tower a round a kepok tree.-Buterfly Farm.-Visit to the yasuni parrot leak.-On the leake BBq dinning area.-Bird watching guides.-Bilingual guides English-French-German. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Despegar.com so you can book your Sacha Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Sacha Hotel Coca
Sacha Lodge Ecuador/Coca

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Sacha Lodge, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.