Bocas del Atrato

Eco-tours

Ecotourism in Bocas del Atrato really does make a difference.  Your visit will enrich you as our guest with a wealth of natural and cultural experiences.  It will also directly contribute to our community as we work together to bring peace and stability and improve our living conditions.  It will also directly help us in our vital work to ensure the conservation of the mangrove forest for us and future generations.   

OurActivities

You can choose from a range of activities during your stay with us.  Here are some of our favourites:

Our Day Tours

Bahía Marirrío, a natural destination

mangrove water and sky2

A beautiful salt water bay surrounded by mangroves with a large population of oysters and a large diversity of seabirds.  This day tour offers a wonderful chance to experience the mangroves and beautiful coastal habitats and in some times of the year you can be lucky enough to see dolphins here.

To take advantage of this excursion we recommend an early start as we set off accompanied by one of the community guides travelling by motorised canoe through areas of mangrove forest to the south of the community.  Enjoying the wonderful scenery of the mangroves as we travel through.  The journey takes around one hour each way.

Once we get to the bay it offers a chance to explore in the motorised canoe the edges of the mangrove forests, enjoy some swimming and snorkelling to see some of the underwater life, and the amazingly intricate system of mangrove roots below the waterline.    For those who would like to we can organise for you to have an artisanal fishing lesson with one of our local community fishermen.   

La Sabalera a majestic tour

Mangrove walkway

Get to know and enjoy the culture and gastronomy of one of the most biodiverse regions of Colombia; Navigate the Atrato River and participate in activities such as endemic bird watching, and a visit to the Afro-descendant community of Bocas del Atrato.

Leaving the Caño Coquito farmhouse, we will navigate the impotent Atrato River towards the Maratrato area, where we can observe its great natural wealth including its large areas of arracachales. In this tour we will observe different birds that rest in the sedimentation areas in the delta of the River. We will stop to observe endemic birds of the area such as the bobito (Bucco noanamae) and many colorful birds.

Following the route on the left side, we can skirt the mangrove ecosystem until we reach the Bay of Desires where we will stop to enjoy the sea breezes. On this tour we can see various species of fish and other birds that frequent the shores of the sea.

After a break, we will continue the route, bordering the mangrove ecosystem where we can see the sedimentation of the mouth and areas of aquatic grasslands that are predominant at the mouth of the streams. We will enter through a pipe that will take us to La Sabalera, where we will be able to observe birds that are more frequent in the inner part of the forest.

If we are lucky we could see the howler monkey or simply hear its extreme voice from the inside of the woods.

La sabalera is a place to have contact with nature and be able to admire its fauna and flora, enjoying its calm, clear and mysterious waters. There, there will be the opportunity for a pleasant bath, amid the noises, aromas and colors of nature.

Maderatrato mysterious and diverse

Bocas del Atrato

Discover the former location of the facilities of the timber company, where there are several abandoned and dilapidated houses, an area adjacent to the hamlet that contains a relic of land immersed in the mangrove swamp.

This scenario, with a mysterious and exciting atmosphere, is perfect for bird watching, reptiles and, if you are lucky, some mammals in the area.

To get to this area it can be done through a rowing canoe navigated by one of the local experts of the community, making the journey through the mangroves to be able to closely observe the seabirds and go in search of the enigmatic bobito ( Bucco noanamae) on the mangrove trail on the way to Maderatrato.

Our favourite placesto visit

  • La Sabalera
  • Marirrio
  • Caño Chilapo
  • Bahia de los Deseos
  • Madera Atrato

A small lagoon of crystalline waters surrounded by lush vegetation that makes for a perfect spot for swimming and snorkelling to see the intricate root systems of the mangroves.  You can reach this lagoon on foot from the village at the end of the mangrove trail. 

  • Good place to see the endemic Sooty-capped Puffbird as well as seabirds including the Magnificent frigate and Rosette Spoonbill
  • Swimming

A beautiful salt water bay with a large population of oysters and a large diversity of seabirds and in some times of the year you can be lucky enough to see dolphins here.

  • Bird watching
  • Artisanal fishing with local fishermen
  • Swimming
  • Snorkeling

Pipe created by hand for extraction of wood (coal). Used as a tourist trail to transport people in rowing boats to the Bay of Desires. Route used to observe birds.

  • Bird watching
  • Kayaking
  • Snorkeling

An area classified as special by the community, pleasant, quiet and good to enjoy the north-south breezes and observe the mangrove ecosystem and its birds.

  • Beautiful sunset
  • Swimming in crystalline waters

Relict of the mainland immersed in the mangrove swamp (where the logging companies' camps were formerly). Here you can find endemic species such as Bucco and some snakes.

Ouraccommodation

Ecolodge

Accommodation is simple but comfortable in our community owned and run Eco-Hotel which has a capacity for 24 guests.  The rooms are dorm style rooms with a capacity ranging from 4-8 beds.  All beds have mosquito nets and sheets and towels are provided.  Separate male and female bathrooms with indoor showers.

Family Home Stay

Five families within the community are able to take guests to stay with them as a home stay, offering a truly authentic experience.  With a total home stay capacity of 22 guests our five host families are able to accommodate between 3 and 7 guests depending on which family you stay with.

  • Tour package 1
  • Tour Package 2

ExperienceCommunity Life

A complete cultural emersion experience that will allow you to disconnect from daily life and experience the world at a different pace in one of the most beautiful and complex ecosystems on earth. 

Enjoy, learn and discover in the heart of the mangrove forest.

Disconnect from daily routine and enjoy a complete cultural emersion experience in the heart of the mangrove forest. Staying as our guest within the community this program is designed to take you beyond the bounds of ordinary tourism.  It will allow you to experience sharing our simple but joyful way of life and gain a deeper understanding about living in harmony with the natural world that surrounds us.        

We are proud of our culture and want to share it with our guests.   Your stay with us will allow us to share our story.  It will also give you the chance to learn new skills, like artisanal fishing techniques passed on through generations of fishermen, cook local dishes (with your own catch if you wish!), learn to create handicrafts from seeds and pods, we will even pass on our secrets of how we manage to get our pots so incredibly shiny and our white clothes so immaculately clean! 

Our trained local community guides will show you how our mangrove forests are vital ecosystems, not only for the exceptional biodiversity they support, but also for the host of services and goods, critical to the well-being of our community that they provide.  Sharing their knowledge and passion to ensure you have a memorable experience during your time as our guest.

Wildlife Highlights ofBocas del Atrato

Experience the stunning array of biological riches found within the vast swathes of mangrove forests of Bocas del Atrato, one of the most beautiful and complex ecosystems on earth.

Enjoy, learn and discover in the heart of the mangrove forest.

The vast complex of mangroves, rivers, creeks and bays that comprises Bocas del Atrato are located between the Darien Gap and the Choco region, two of the most biodiverse places on earth.  This makes for a stunning array of plant, bird, mammal and fish life in one of the most beautiful and complex ecosystems on earth.  

During your time with us you will have the chance to paddle through a network of narrow creeks and see the five different kinds of mangrove found here.  You will have chance to observe some of the rare and beautiful birdlife of our mangroves including the Sooty-capped Puffbird (Bucco noanamae), found nowhere else on earth and the critically endangered Saphire-bellied Hummingbird (Lepidopyga lilliae). 

Together with your local community guide you will spend time searching the canopy of the forests to try and spot Red Howler Monkeys (Alouatta seniculus), Cotton-top Tamarin (Saguinus oedipus), Three-toed Sloths (Bradypus) and giant Iguanas, and if luck is on your side, you may even see the endangered Manati (Trichechus manatus)

We also want your time with us to include some time getting to know us as a community.  We are the proud guardians of the mangrove, and we want your time with us to include the chance to get to know us too, to share our way of life and some of the challenges we face in conserving this amazing ecosystem for future generations.