Mashpi Lodge in Ecuador Is a Hidden Forest Gem

The Chocó rainforest is one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet, with an estimated 10,000 plant species found in the area!

By: THURSD. | 07-06-2023 | 6 min read
Mashpi Lodge

Mashpi Lodge in Ecuador is a nature lover's paradise. Nestled in the heart of the Andean cloud forest, this eco-lodge offers an immersive experience of the natural world, where guests can explore the lush forests and observe the diverse flora and fauna that call this place home.

Mashpi Lodge - Redefining a Forest Experience

The lodge's main attraction is its surrounding forests, which cover over 3,000 acres and are home to over 500 species of birds, 36 species of mammals, and 200 species of plants. The forests are part of the Chocó-Darién eco-region, a biodiversity hotspot that spans from Panama to Colombia and is recognized as one of the most important in the world.


Mashpi Lodge hotel view
Mashpi Lodge view


Mashpi Lodge was built with the intention of blending in with the natural environment and minimizing its impact on the surrounding forests. The lodge is constructed with locally sourced materials and designed to be energy efficient, with solar panels providing much of the electricity.

Guests at Mashpi Lodge have the opportunity to explore the forests and observe the incredible biodiversity up close. There are numerous hiking trails that wind through the forest, and guided walks are available with expert naturalists who are knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna.


Mashpi Lodge located in Ecuador
Mashpi Lodge


More About the Lodge That Leads You to Rainforest Luxury

Located in the heart of Ecuador's Chocó rainforest, it's a unique and luxurious eco-lodge that offers a truly immersive nature experience. Surrounded by dense tropical forests, cascading waterfalls, and diverse wildlife, Mashpi Lodge is a nature lover's paradise and a must-visit destination for anyone seeking a peaceful retreat in the midst of stunning natural beauty.


Waterfalls and nature at Mashpi Lodge


Mashpi Lodge is a project of the renowned Metropolitan Touring, a company that has been promoting sustainable tourism in Ecuador for over sixty years. The lodge was designed by a team of local and international architects and built using sustainable materials, blending seamlessly into the surrounding forest landscape. The lodge has received numerous accolades for its innovative design, including being named one of National Geographic's Unique Lodges of the World.


Mashpi Lodge located in the Andes mountains


The lodge offers numerous guided activities to help guests explore the forests and discover their secrets. These activities include hiking through the forest canopy on the lodge's Sky Bike, which is a suspended bicycle that takes guests through the treetops, offering unparalleled views of the surrounding landscape. Guests can also go on guided hikes through the forest, led by expert naturalists who can identify the flora and fauna found in the region.


Flora and fauna found at the lodge


Worth Seeing and Absolutely Fantastic Flora and Fauna All-Around

The flora around Mashpi Lodge is particularly noteworthy. The Chocó rainforest is one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet, with an estimated 10,000 plant species found in the area. The forests around Mashpi Lodge are home to numerous species of orchids, bromeliads, ferns, and other exotic plants. The lodge has its own garden of endemic plant species, which guests can explore on a guided tour. The garden is home to several rare and endangered plant species, and the lodge has a team of botanists working to protect and preserve the region's unique flora.


Amazing animals are seen at Mashpi Lodge


One of the most iconic plants found in the region is the mountain rose, a type of bromeliad that grows in the cloud forest. These plants are often referred to as 'rose succulents' because their leaves form a rosette shape that resembles a rose. The Andean rose is a hardy plant that can survive in a range of conditions, making it a common sight in the forests around Mashpi Lodge.


Brownish beige butterfly in nature


In addition to its forests and flora, Mashpi Lodge is also home to a wide variety of wildlife, including over 500 species of birds. Guests can go birdwatching on the lodge's many trails, or visit the hummingbird feeders located around the property. Mashpi Lodge is also home to numerous species of monkeys, butterflies, and other insects, as well as larger mammals such as tapirs and ocelots. The lodge offers night walks, during which guests can see nocturnal animals such as owls and bats.


Activities to do during stay at Mashpi Lodge


Different Accommodation and Activity Options

Mashpi Lodge offers a variety of accommodations to suit different preferences, from luxurious rooms with private balconies to more secluded suites with private hot tubs. All of the rooms are designed to be in harmony with the surrounding forest, with large windows offering stunning views of the forest canopy. The lodge's restaurant serves gourmet cuisine made with fresh, local ingredients, and guests can enjoy meals while watching the hummingbirds and other wildlife outside.


Visiting waterfalls in nature


In addition to its nature-based activities, Mashpi Lodge also offers cultural experiences, including visits to local communities and learning about the region's rich cultural heritage. The lodge is committed to sustainable tourism and works closely with local communities to promote conservation and protect the region's natural resources.

One of the most popular activities at Mashpi Lodge is the Canopy Gondola, which takes guests on a 30-minute ride through the treetops of the cloud forest. From this vantage point, guests can observe the diverse plant life that grows in the forest, including orchids, bromeliads, and ferns.


Orchid species seen at Mashpi Lodge


The hotel also offers a range of other activities that showcase the natural beauty of the region. There are birdwatching tours that allow guests to observe some of the hundreds of bird species that inhabit the forest, as well as night walks that reveal the nocturnal creatures that come out after dark.


Cloud view of rainforest at Mashpi


Mashpi Lodge Has Earned Several Awards

The lodge's founders have worked tirelessly to create a destination that not only showcases the natural beauty of the region but also contributes to its protection and preservation. Mashpi Lodge's commitment to sustainability and conservation has earned it numerous accolades and awards: 

  1. In 2015, Mashpi Lodge became a member of National Geographic's Unique Lodges of the World, a collection of lodges that offer exceptional guest experiences while promoting sustainable tourism and the protection of cultural and natural heritage.

  2. Mashpi Lodge has been recognized as South America's Leading Green Hotel and Ecuador's Leading Boutique Hotel multiple times by the World Travel Awards, which acknowledge excellence in the travel and tourism industry.

  3. In 2020, Mashpi Lodge was included in the Condé Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards as one of the Top 30 Resorts in South America.

  4. The lodge has also been recognized by the World Luxury Hotel Awards in several categories, including Luxury Eco Resort, Luxury Boutique Lodge, and Luxury Wildlife Resort.


Rooms at Mashpi Lodge with trees outside


If you're planning a trip to Ecuador, Mashpi Lodge must be on your list. It is a nature lover's dream, offering a range of activities and experiences that showcase the incredible biodiversity of the Andean cloud forest.


Photos by Mashpi Lodge.



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