“Laguna Grande” Cuyabeno
The Ecuadorian Amazon can be reached by a 45 minute flight from Quito, capital of Ecuador. An area full of flora, fauna and easy access for those who want to know it.
This is the Cuyabeno Fauna Reserve, where the Laguna Grande is located, a magical place due to its beautiful landscapes. You can only get there by boat on the Cuyabeno River, starting in Lago Agrio, which can be easily reached by plane from Quito.
As you enter the Ecuadorian Amazon you immediately feel part of the nature of the place, large trees with their lianas, as well as animals like alligators, monkeys, birds and others are part of this landscape that welcomes you on your way to the Laguna Grande. It is the largest of 14 lagoons that are in this reserve forming the most extensive wetland area of the Ecuadorian Amazon. The duration of this trip varies from 2 to 3 hours.
When you arrive at the Laguna Grande, you will be completely mesmerized by the landscape of trees in the middle of the water, the reflection of everything that surrounds the lagoon and an infinite quietness with only the sound of birds passing by. . It is incredible to think that in the dry season this place changes its appearance and the water level drops leaving areas of the lagoon uncovered to walk. Swimming is one of the first things that the lagoon invites you to do. You will feel a mixture of emotions before venturing into a dive, but in the end, the feeling of being able to swim freely in the middle of nature wins you over and will make you wish to stay forever. In the afternoon the sunset dazzles you with its orange and reddish colors, every picture taken now, will seem professional as each element stands out and creates a unique composition of colors and beauty.
Due to the special location of the Laguna Grande it is possible to take walks during the day and at night in the surroundings with several lodging options nearby that allow you to enjoy this beautiful place in all its splendor. Pink dolphins, anacondas, caimans, boas, piranhas, manatees and hoatzin are only few of the animals living in this reserve. With patience and the company of a native guide you will be able to observe them and admire the beauty of these animals in their natural state. If you want to venture a little more you can go kayaking in the river and observe the flora of the place. If you leave early in the morning it is possible to observe different birds as well.
Experiencing this reserve and the Laguna Grande is complemented by a visit to an indigenous community of the Zionas, Secoyas or Kichw as that inhabit the area and learn from their traditions and experiences living in the Ecuadorian Amazon. The Laguna Grande del Cuyabeno is a magical place where you will forget everything and let yourself be carried away by the tranquility and sounds of nature.