FAQ: All you need to know before your stay at Xixuau Amazon Ecolodge

Where exactly is the Xixuaú Amazon ecolodge located?

The Xixuaú Amazon Ecolodge is located within the traditional community of Xixuaú, on the Jauaperi River, a tributary of the Negro River, which in turn is a tributary of the Amazon River. The Jauaperi river marks the border between the Brazilian states of Amazonas and Roraima.

What are the closest cities to the ecolodge?

The Xixuaú village is about 400 km from the historic city of Manaus and 300 Km from the small town of Novo Airão on the Negro River.

What temperature will I find in this part of the Amazon forest?

The average yearly temperature is 28°C and the climate is equatorial.

What kind of environment will I find in the Amazon forest Xixuaù village?

The lodge and the village are surrounded by tropical dense forest, primary, intact and, in some part even unexplored. The forest is surrounded by a labyrinth of water, clear and transparent in the minor courses and black and acid along the main river.

During the flooded season – from April to June – the level of the river can rise up to 10 meters, flooding vast areas of the forest, called igapó, and leaving a few isolated areas of dry mainland, called terra firme. That landscape stays on until the beginning of the dry season – from October to March – when the level of the river goes down, allowing large sandy beaches and rock formations to emerge.

What will I see in that area of the Amazon forest?

The area of the Amazon forest around the Xixuaù village is rich in flora (bromeliads, Brazil nut trees, samaumas) as well as fauna: this dense forest is home to many endangered species like sloths, giant otters, river dolphins, manatees, jaguars, black caimans, harpy eagles, spider monkeys, anteaters, armadillos, pirarucus, macaws and toucans.

Our expert local guides accompany only two people at a time, and every excursion is skillfully prepared to cause the least disturbance to the animals, so as to have better chances of sighting.

Why is it called “community-based ecotourism”?

It is ‘community-based’ because the Ecolodge is owned by the local CoopXixuaú cooperative, composed exclusively of natives and created with the aim of guaranteeing a sustainable livelihood for its members through the preservation of the forest.

It is also called ecotourism because in order to minimize the impact on the environment, the trip is organized for small groups only, and all expeditions are made either on foot, paddle canoe or using electric motorboats.

Is the ecotourism at Xixuaú certified?

Community ecotourism at Xixuaú Amazon Ecolodge is certified by the Cadastur body of the Brazilian government with the ‘Selo Turismo Responsável’, which guarantees compliance with all anti-Covid protocols. It is also certified by the Italian Association of Responsible Tourism AITR and is included in WWF’s Travels of Biodiversity.

How is the ecolodge the Amazon forest Xixuaù village structured?

The Xixuaú Amazon Ecolodge consists of traditional Malocas, wooden chalets equipped with a veranda overlooking the river. Each circular structure has two double or single rooms with beds, sheets, pillowcases and mosquito nets, as well as private bathrooms.

What type of food is served at the ecolodge in the Amazon forest Xixuaù village?

The cuisine is local and international but vegetarian and vegan meals are available upon request. Fresh water and fruit juices are included.

Are there other drinks available?

No, there aren’t but guests are welcome to bring their own.

What should I expect to do on a typical day in the Amazon forest Xixuaù village?

The days at Xixuaú are dedicated to canoe excursions, trekking in the forest, nature watching, fishing with traditional methods, bathing in the river, relaxing on the veranda of your bungalow or on the beach (dry season only), local handcraft purchase and getting to know the local community.

Can we decide which activities to carry out in advance?

The program of activities is not defined a priori but decided together with the staff and local guides during the stay, tailor-made according to the preferences of the guests, the weather and the sighted animals in the area. You can go out on excursions 3 times a day, including one at night.

What excursions can we do?

There are many possibilities: the lake of pink dolphins, the dens of giant otters, 6 different paths to trek in the forest, the sunrise on the main river, the giant Amazon nut trees, the groups of monkeys along the forest path, canoe lessons and, during the evocative evening excursions, the sighting of caimans and other nocturnal animals.

If you want, you can also have the extraordinary experience of sleeping in the forest, with an excursion of 2 days and one night.

Who is the staff of the ecolodge made up of?

The staff of the Xixuaú Amazon Ecolodge is made up of local inhabitants, all members of the CoopXixuaú cooperative. They are experienced experts of the natural environment and of the local flora and fauna and therefore, extraordinary guides.

Are there any staff members who speak English?

The natives speak only Portuguese but, if you need it, the cooperative will provide a translator from/to English.

Are there places to spend the evening?

We spend the evenings together at the main Maloca, talking and sharing the day experience, checking with your guide the sightings of the day on the available books or simply playing with the village kids. There, or on you own veranda, you can enjoy the sunset while sipping a Caipirinha offered by our staff!

Can I buy stuff in or near Xixuaú?

There are no shops in or near Xixuaú, so any personal items or extra consumables must be brought with you.

Can I buy souvenirs at Xixuaù Amazon forest village?

Yes, you can. Local people make and sell small handicrafts (jewellery and small gifts), but we recommend that you bring Brazilian cash in small pieces in order to make these purchases.

Can I call and talk on the phone with my family and friends?

Due to the remoteness of the area, there is no coverage for mobile phones, but the staff has an internet connection, which is available for emergencies.

The community school has an internet connection as well, free for you to use, but it doesn’t run the whole day and it is pretty slow. So, get ready to disconnect and fully enjoy your vacation!

Can I recharge my devices?

Yes, it is possible to recharge electronic devices every day at times defined by the cooperative, but pay attention because they change according to the season, and remember, the voltage is 110 and the sockets are Brazilian, so bring with you a socket adapter.

What happens if I get sick or hurt?

There are no doctors in the village, so remember to bring your usual medicines. In case of emergency there is a fast speedboat for transportation to the nearest city hospital in about 6 hours.

Can I leave stuff at the Xixuaù village when I leave?

If you would like to leave any clothes, school materials or over-the-counter medicines, local people will much appreciate that.

Can I do whatever I want during the vacation in the Amazon forest Xixuaù village? 

During the stay, it is strongly recommended to follow the safety rules indicated by the staff, such as, for example, not to go into the forest without a guide or not to swim in areas other than those indicated. Pursuant to Art. 1341CC the organisation is exonerated from any responsibility for damages to things and / or people procured / suffered during the trip.

What do I need for the night on the boat in the Amazon river?

A hammock with two ropes and a medium weight blanket are essential for the overnight on the boat and the overnight in the forest. They must be purchased before the meeting with the guide. In the center of Manaus there are numerous banquets and shops where you can buy them.

What kind of equipment do I need during the stay in the Amazon forest Xixuaù village? 

Shorts and trousers, lightweight short and long sleeved t-shirts, sweatshirt/pullover for the night, rainproof jacket, swimsuit, hiking shoes or sneakers for walks in the forest, flip-flops, hat and sunglasses.

The lodge does not provide bath towels, and you will need one for the boat trip, so please bring your own.

Binoculars are suggested for a better fauna watching. Do not forget a waterproof bag for your photographic equipment.

A torch is mandatory. Bring your own medicine, sunscreening and a repellent.

What does the fee include?

The fee includes: transfer from the center of Manaus to the port of departure and return. River transport from Manaus to Xixuaú and return. Full board: breakfast, lunch and dinner, water and fruit juices included. Accommodation in single or double room. Guided excursions, day and night, (up to 3 per day). Forest camp overnight. Contribution to forest conservation activities and sustainable development.

IMPORTANT: The fee does not include transport to the place of departure (Manaus center), extras and anything not expressly indicated.

Do I have to get vaccines to make this trip?

In Brazil no vaccination is required, but vaccine against yellow fever and antimalarial prophylaxis are recommended. It is recommended to consult your doctor or a specialized health center. Please check the anti-Covid protocol rules applied in Brazil before your departure.

Do I need a visa to enter Brazil?

To enter Brazil a visa is required for citizens of some countries. Please check the visa requirements with the Brazilian embassy in your country.

What is Amazônia Onlus?

Amazônia Onlus is the Italian non-profit organization that has promoted the creation of the CoopXixuaú and the community-based ecotourism operated at the Xixuaú Amazon Ecolodge. It runs projects that back the sustainable development and the forest conservation of the region.

On a daily basis, the organization supports the local cooperative in communication work and cultural mediation.