The Eco-Lodge


Welcome to the heart of Guyana

The Amerindian community of Surama is located in the heart of Guyana. The village is set in five square miles of savannah which is ringed by the forest covered Pakaraima Mountains. Surama’s inhabitants are mainly made up of the Makushi people one of the nine indigenous peoples of Guyana.    They still observe many of the traditional practices of their forebears.

This isolated and idyllic location offers an escape from the concrete jungle to a serene and peaceful existence with nature. Dawn hikes, led by the Surama guides across the savannah and up Surama Mountain, reveal a multitude of birds and fantastic vistas. The guides have lived their entire lives in the rainforest, and have an incredible understanding of nature and how to utilize its resources respectfully.

Surama shares a common border with Iwokrama International Centre for Conservation and Development along the Burro- Burro River. It is here the community has established Carahaa Landing Camp, a hammock camp on the river edge. This camp offers a base for night walks and daybreak canoe floats on the Burro – Burro River, which allows an opportunity to observe Giant River Otters, Tapir, Tira, spider Monkey, and many more species. Fishing for Piranhas, Piras Haimaras, and catfishes is also a regular activity for interested clients.

Guests can also stay in the village Eco-Lodge, which provides simple, comfortable accommodation with shared facilities and excellent meals prepared from local produce.

The Surama community has identified eco-tourism as a sustainable use of their land. It means employment at home, rather than the men and young leaving to mine or cut timber in other parts of Guyana.

Surama and Wilderness Explorers have developed a strategic alliance that fosters the development of eco-tourism in the community. All tours of Surama are managed and operated solely by the Makushi People. Wilderness Explorers provides some administration, sales, and marketing skills in support of Surama.

Apart from the direct employment from eco-tourism, the community also benefits from the purchase of local produce, and cultural shows and a portion of this from every tour goes to a village fund which is used for community development projects.

Guest Benabs

We have four octagonal guest benabs (cottages) built in the traditional grass-roof Makushi style. These four benabs surround the main community benab. Each benab can sleep up to three adults and has a private bathroom with flush toilet, shower, and sink. The benab is screened-in to reduce mosquitos, but mosquito nets are also provided for each single bed. Solar power provides limited lighting in the room. Bed sheets and towels are supplied and refreshed every other day, or upon request.

Guest Cabin

Our Guest Cabin building sits slightly away from the main community benab and features four rooms, each with a double bed. Solar power provides lighting in each room and the common areas. Each guest room in the cabin building features a shower, flush toilet, and sink. Every bed has a mosquito net. Bed sheets and towels are supplied and refreshed every other day, or upon request. A shared back patio faces the forest and is a perfect spot for a cup of coffee at sunrise

Guest Hammocks

Hammocks can be slung in the wide-open upstairs area of the main Community Benab building. Guests should give the hammock a try for at least one night of their stay at Surama. It takes some getting used to, but you’ll find it is much cooler than a closed-in room on a bed mattress. All of us Makushi sleep in hammocks! We can put a mosquito net over your hammock so you can rest comfortably in the breeze without worrying about night time insects. You’ll wake up with a stunning view of the Pakaraimas, serenaded by howler monkeys and the calls of thousands of birds greeting the new day.

Main Benab

The main benab has two levels. Downstairs you’ll find our small administrative office and the kitchen, along with an open-air dining area with casual picnic-tables where you will share good food, drink, and story telling with your fellow guests. Upstairs you’ll find our gift counter, a large sun deck, and an open space that is often used for village meetings, cultural performances, even the occasional session of yoga. It’s the perfect spot to grab a cool drink at the end of a day and watch the sun set below the rainforest canopy.

Carahaa Landing

Less than an hour’s walk from the main lodge is one of our very favorite spots: Carahaa Landing. We’ve built some grass-roofed buildings here as well as a brand new elevated, open-air structure where you can cook, eat, and camp while enjoying all the wildlife and exploration that the river offers. The camp offers a base for a night walks and day break canoe floats with the opportunity to observe giant river otters, tapir, tira, spider monkey and many more species. Fishing for pirinas, piras haimaras and cat fishes is also easily done here. Sling a hammock under a tree for a good night’s rest. This is the perfect jumping-off point for excursions up to Rock Landing, Caronparo Landing, and points beyond. Other than the flowing river, there is no running water and no electricity here.

Rock Landing

Upstream from Carahaa Landing is our first outpost camp, Rock Landing. Depending on water levels, it can take one to three hours to get here, and it may be necessary to occasionally lift your canoe over the rocks if there isn’t enough water in the river. The facilities here are similar to Carahaa Landing: a few thatch-roof buildings provide basic shelter where you can cook and eat. Most guests sling a hammock (with mosquito net) and sleep under the stars.