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The lodge project started in 1999 when it became apparent that there was no lodge designed for birdwatchers on the west slope of the Ecuadorian Andes. A main building with twelve bedrooms and a spacious balcony nestled within the cloudforest. The lodge is designed so that you can relax in comfort after a day’s birding. All but two rooms are near to the main lounge so there is no need for a hike between where you sleep and where you relax and eat.
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Birding at Tandayapa starts right on the patio. Early in the morning many birds come to feed on the insects that are attracted to the lights on the walls during the night. With daily activities based off the Lodge you can visit a whole range of habitats from the lowlands to temperate forest, with many different birds. Altogether, over 600 species have been recorded on tours based out of the Lodge. On sunny days, after the forest has gone quiet, the patio is a great place to watch for raptors.
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The number of species in the forest is astounding. The trees are covered with bromeliads and climbers, and whilst flowers do not seem to be as common as they are in temperate forests, the blooms in the cloudforest can be spectacular. The orchids are the most famous and include some of the most beautiful, but equally as striking are the red spikes of flowering gingers, the pink hydrangeas dangling from the canopy, and the enormous passion-flowers hanging down from vines. Heliconias will certainly attract your eye, with huge flowering spikes, and nobody can miss the huge elephants’ ears, with their leaves large enough to be used as umbrellas.