Ayahuasca Foundation FAQs
Will I Be Safe Traveling in Peru?
Yes. Obviously, no matter where you go, there will always be certain risks, and like every country and city, there are dangerous places and safe places. Fortunately, Iquitos is a very safe place, with almost no violent crime. There are pickpockets or thieves who may try to seize an opportunity, but crime rates are low in Iquitos, and the areas where tourists visit are well patrolled by police and security. Having lived in Iquitos since 2004, I have had my baseball cap stolen off my head, and a backpack stolen that I left at my desk in an internet cafe to use the bathroom.
Do I need a VISA to Travel to Peru?
No. Traveling from most countries (North & South America, Europe, Australia) you do not need a visa, but if you are not sure I suggest visiting the website of your local embassy for more information. Most likely you do not need a visa. When you enter Peru, you will get a stamp and a hand written number with the allowed length of your stay (usually 90 days). The maximum length of stay is 183 days, so if you plan to travel more than 3 months, you’ll want to ask for the maximum amount.
Do I need to get any vaccinations?
No. Peru does not require any vaccinations and we do not recommend getting any either. However, we understand the desire to be safe and the pressures often felt by others wanting the same, namely family, friends, and doctors. If you do feel you would like to get vaccinated, we would then recommend vaccinations for:
1. Yellow Fever – Even though it is extremely rare in the Iquitos area, it does exist elsewhere…
2. Rabies – There are numerous stray dogs in Iquitos…
3. Hepatitis A – Iquitos is not exactly winning any Hygiene awards…
Should I be worried about Malaria?
No. Iquitos is known to be a high-risk area when it comes to Malaria, so it is a concern. However, we do NOT recommend taking anti-malarial medication when drinking ayahuasca, as it has been known to cause complications. It is up to you, of course, but what we offer instead is a natural remedy taken every day of the retreats. We have never had a case of malaria in anyone taking this remedy. For this reason, we don’t feel you should be worried about Malaria. I have lived in Iquitos since 2004 and have never gotten malaria.
Is the Air Fare included in with the price of the program?
No. You must book your own flight to Iquitos, Peru. We can help you by suggesting airlines or websites to use but the cost of airfare is not included in the program price.
Will I need to bring extra money?
Yes. If you arrive earlier than the first day of the retreat, you will need to pay for your own expenses until 4pm on the first day (sunday). Once the program has begun, you will need to pay for two meals in Iquitos: breakfast on the 2nd day (monday) before leaving for the jungle, and dinner on the 2nd to last day (friday) upon returning to Iquitos. Other than that, the only money you might need would be for gifts or souvenirs or extra medicine(s) to take home with you.
How many people are in a program?
We take a maximum of ten people, so usually we have between 8 and 10 participants in each program.
When should I arrive?
The latest we recommend you arrive is 2pm on the day the program begins (sunday) so that you don’t miss the first meeting at 4pm, but you may arrive later that day, but not any later than that day. What we think is best is to arrive at least one day early in order to get some rest and adjust to the new environment. Arriving on saturday is a good plan.
When should I book my return flight?
The earliest we recommend booking your return flight is at 1pm on the last day of the program (saturday) so that you don’t miss the group breakfast but you can leave earlier than that, if necessary, but not the day before.
Will I be picked up at the airport?
Yes. You will be met at the airport in Iquitos and escorted to the hotel where all the participants will be staying the first night of the program.
Is there electricity?
CHAMISAL: Yes. There is limited electricity during the day via solar panels. Enough for charging phones, ipods, cameras, etc.
INKAN KENA: Kinda. We run a generator every afternoon for three hours. We hope to have a new solar system by the end of the year.
RIOSBO: Totally. Thanks to a complete solar system, it is just like home (ok, maybe not as many outlets, but still…)
What kind of electrical outlets are used in Peru?
The outlets in Peru are very similar to those found in the US, although the voltage is different. Peru uses 220V (as opposed to 110V in the US), but nowadays, nearly all electrical devices are designed to use both so there is no need to bring or buy an adapter. If you are unsure, there should be some information printed on the plug or device stating what voltage it can use (110 – 240V is most common). The only adapter you will need is if your device does not have a flat or round two-prong plug.
Basically, it will need to fit in here:
What about laundry?
There is a laundromat just a few blocks from the hotel in Iquitos that is fast and reliable, usually taking just four or five hours. Out in the jungle, laundry is done every four or five days, although it is definitely not as fast. It usually comes back the following day, depending on the weather.
Is there cell service or WIFI?
CHAMISAL: You might be able to get a signal, although not reliably, and it would be incredibly lucky to get the 3G network. No wi-fi.
INKAN KENA: Surprisingly, there is a signal for one service (Bitel) and often 3G as well. No wi-fi.
RIOSBO: While there is no cell service, there will be a land-line phone, and there will be wi-fi. (the center is still under construction).