Iquitos and Sacred Valley in Peru
I left a review on this place after my trip in December and while talking about some things I didn’t like.. I ultimately left it 5 stars because the Shaman was unbelievable and I didn’t have it in me to knock the business of some truly great people there.
As someone who spent a boat load of money to go do Ayahuasca for my first time.. I feel like I along with other reviewers and participants have a major responsibility to those researching about making the same leap that I did. Not picking the right retreat is truly a disaster. Some won’t have the opportunity to do it a next time.
Taking the time to re write this review is not being done out of spite. It’s being done out of that responsibility. I don’t want to mislead someone into the wrong retreat for them based on a 5 star review that I don’t believe in. I also see just an overwhelming amount of 5 star reviews on here and I feel its very misleading. It’s what got me to commit to this retreat. It’s not easy to come back and leave a mediocre review unless you truly had a horrific experience. I believe if you polled every single person thats been through here this is far from a 5 star retreat.. and that needs to be talked about here.
The Shaman that I worked with is no longer there. He is the result of many of the rave reviews on here. The new one could be amazing too.. That I don’t know. I do know without Diego there.. that in itself would completely change my review of this place.
When traveling to South America the most important thing is safety. This place is extremely safe. Meals are good.. you’ll be comfortable. The average person that wants to go drink Ayahuasca and expand their consciousness could be fine here.
For someone that has issues to work out I believe you can do much better. I have terrible anxiety. I wanted to be listened to. I wanted opportunities to talk to the Shaman one on one. I wanted to feel like a priority and have the opportunity to really work through that stuff. I didn’t get that. It was advertised as a smaller group retreat and it was overbooked. This retreat to me felt like a business. I was nothing but a number. Questions were answered in BS robotic scripted responses. The first night there someone that had been to a previous Aya retreat asked about getting time with the Shaman and honestly the response he got was extremely rude IMO. When you hear “dont do a retreat” I believe this type of place is exactly what they are talking about. You are going to get quality Ayahuasca in a safe environment but you are nothing but another number before the next group comes in.
In saying that.. I’m changing my review to 3 stars. You could do much worse. If you have the means to travel around and do this as much as you want.. by all means.. you might enjoy this place. If you don’t have the money to make a mistake and are struggling with anxiety or some kind of a traumatic past.. you are the people I am leaving this review for. Anxiety is a nightmare that ruins so many lives. Ayahuasca is DEFINITELY something you should look into. Don’t put your hopes into this place if it’s the only chance you’ve got. Research, research, and research some more and find the perfect place that will make you feel like you matter and that will get you through what you are searching for.
Edit: I posted this review earlier today. Copying my review word for word.. my review was still 3 stars.. which I would rate as average. Nothing wrong at all with someone wanting to leave an honest 3 star average review for their experience. I was immediately bombarded on Facebook messenger by Chandra.. the woman mostly in charge of things.. with 15 messages full of drama. In this above review.. I held back. I did not want to be blunt.
Now I will be. I am changing my review from 3 stars to 1. Why is this place rated so high? Because people with negative opinions are uncomfortable saying something.. and pressured to rate so highly. Chandra was my number 1 complaint with this place. She did not listen to myself, or others concerns while there. She bombarded me with messages about an instance that had nothing to do with my review.. and was actually something I agreed with her on (someone leaving the temple during ceremony). My review above about her being rude to someone was actually someone who handled himself very well and was very low maintenance. Small things matter.. and she was rude to him over a question I felt similar about. Take a look in the mirror Chandra and listen to people and their intentions more. You are in a place to where you can make a massive difference in peoples lives. The fact that I was bombarded over a 3 star review is ridiculous. Earn your 5 stars and I will respond in such. Harass people about 3 star reviews and that is exactly what is wrong with this system. Misleading great reviews that lead people to waste their money. If someone else feels you don’t deserve 5 stars don’t harass them. Leave them alone and be better. I did not have it in me to poorly review this place but now I do. This is my only experience with Ayahuasca but I whole heartedly believe you can do much better and I will look to do so next time.
904-435-7994 in U.S. or 099 368 8463 in Ecuador
Rio Jurumbaino Macas Ecuador
This is a bit of a strange review as I have yet to try Ayahuasca yet. However I felt the need to get on here and leave a review about the owner (Ken). One of the reviews on here pushed me to want to try another more well known retreat instead of his. With this being my first time its absolutely crucial that I make the right decision. I had been in contact with Ken for a few months and had put down a deposit for my friend and I. I sent a complete stranger in Ecuador 200 dollars and he could have taken my money and ran without me being able to do a thing about it. Ken informed me that he typically doesn’t do refunds but he understands my concerns. He sent me my refund instantly. Throughout this process Ken has been very responsive and informative. And now to top it off very honest and trustworthy. I think there is a good chance I’m making a mistake not to give his retreat a chance right now. If you look at his website and get a chance to talk with him you will find a very genuine person with something very unique to offer. I would whole heartedly recommend putting your trust in him and giving this a shot.. I don’t think you will be disappointed and I plan on taking my own advice the next time around if I decide this is something I want to continue with.