International Day of the Mangrove

This July 26th in Huaquillas, El Oro, Ecuador, the Federation of Artisan Fishermen "Frontera Sur" and Arcoiris Ecologic Foundation organized various activities to bring attention to the...


Alternative Tourism Proposition

Local fishing organizations in Hualtaco, El Oro, recently joined forces in order to develop the alternative tourism proposition called the "Route of the Mangrove". The objective of...


Experience Exchange

At the end of June, representatives from various organizations from the provinces of Riobamba, Azuay, Cañar, Morona Santiago, Zamora Chinchipe, and Loja all met in Cañar to share their...


Day of the Fisherman

On June 29th, the organizations of the fishing division of Hualtaco celebrated the Day of the Fisherman. After a parade throughout the main streets of Huaquillas, a festival began at the...

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Podocarpus National Park

The Arcoiris Reserve is located in San Francisco cloud forest in the northern part of Podocarpus National Park.  It is at an altitude of about 7,150 feet (2180 meters) above sea level.  It's in the Zamora Chinchipe province, and is only 14 miles (23 kilometers) from the city of Loja.  It's temperature varies between 53° and 64° C (12° and 18° F) all year round.  It is currently used for environmental investigation, recreation, and education.  Arcoiris performs all administration of the reserve, working to ensure the conservation of the natural resources and biodiversity of  the area.

In the reserve it is easy to come across several endangered plant species.  Podocarpus pine trees, the trees from which the national park receives its name, are the only conifers native to Ecuador.  The Cascarilla, or Cinchona, is an important medicinal plant and is the national tree of Ecuador.  Other less endangered plants include orchids, bromelias, mosses, and ferns, which all help maintain the natural springs of the area.  There is also an abundance of bird species, including the Dusky-legged Guan, tanager, toucanet, and hummingbird, among others.  This area is also the natural habitat of the spectacled bear, the northern pudu, and pumas, tapirs, and tree frogs.

The reserve also includes a 25-person refuge.  It has three bedrooms, each with several beds and bunks with blankets.  There is also a kitchen, a living room, a bathroom with hot water, a conference room for environmental education, a parking lot, and several hiking trails.  We also offer lodging, food, and guides, as well as technical assistance in anything related to the management and conservation of nature.


  • Entrance : $ 10.00 for foreigners, $2.00 for citizens
  • Lodging $ 10.00 per night per person
  • Guide:      $ 40.00 per day


The best way to get to the reserve is to board a bus from the terminal in Loja bound for Zamora.  The bus will pass directly by the entrance to the reserve on the highway to Zamora, and you can ask the driver to let you off there.  The bus fare generally costs 80 cents.  If you prefer, you could also take a taxi from Loja, which will cost you about $15.00. 

For visits, please contact:

Ciprés Street 12-202 and Acacias - La Pradera Sector
Telephone: 2572926 – 2577449
Loja, Ecuador