Located about 20 minutes from downtown Iquitos, on a road adorned with multiple scents and sounds, the Quistococha resort welcomes you with a colorful sign and a very reasonable entrance fee: S/ 10 for adults and S/ 5 for children.
Once inside the complex, you find yourself surrounded by jungle, home to several species of animals. At the start of the tour, you will be received by watermelon-eating macaws and giant ants that steal the attention of people visiting the Amazon for the first time.
The tour also takes you to an island of monkeys and jaguars, pumas, giant iguanas, huge lizards and rodents that are part of the zoo which houses over 150 species of fauna.
The road, adorned by a variety of sounds produced by birds, continues downhill to the favorite spot for visitors: the lagoon and its white sand beach, a fun space also known as Tunchi Beach. This is where most guests concentrate, to swim in its warm waters, sunbathe, or rent paddleboats.
A visit to Quistococha would not be complete if you do not grab some of the delicious gastronomic offerings from the Amazon. A restaurant at the foot of the trees has panoramic views and offers meals off all kinds, but you should definitely try the juane, paiche, tacacho with cecina and patarashca, among other dishes. They are accompanied with camu camu and cocona fruit juice, native to the Amazon region.
At the exit, there is a shop that invites you to buy souvenirs (chains, bracelets, necklaces, brochures, hand-painted ornaments and more) to remember your visit. Outside Quistococha, a small food fair gives you a last chance to try suri, a worm that you can eat live or grilled. But, that is another adventure if you choose to take it.
Cover photo: picbabun.com
This article has been updated from its original publication on July 31, 2012.
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