Operated by Rainforest Expeditions, Posada Amazonas (Lima tel. 01/421-8347, www.perunature.com , three days/two nights US$295–385 pp) lodge is a groundbreaking experiment in cooperation with the community of Infierno two hours upstream of Puerto Maldonado . The people of Infierno, mestizo descendants of Ese Eja Indians, receive training, jobs, and a share of the profits, while the lodge gets use of the land. The goal of the project is to return the land to the community in 2016 and integrate the community into ecotourism and the overall preservation of rainforest.
The elegant lodge has 30 thatched rooms, with the outside wall completely open to keep guests in contact with nature. They have private bathrooms (no hot water), beds with mosquito canopies, and candlelight only. There is a hammock lounge, library, open-air dining room, and a permanent snack/hot drink table. Tours include visits to an oxbow lake to see otters, an ethnobotanical center at Infierno, and a canopy tower 35 meters off the ground and walks in the effervescent jungle.
Rainforest Expeditions is a well-managed outfit with biologist guides, excellent boats, and reliable service. It has won a series of sustainable development awards and also operates the more rustic and remote Tambopata Research Center . Contact information for both lodges is the same.