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“Healed and awakened to who I truly am!”
Review of Amaru Spirit

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Amaru Spirit
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 5 August 2014

This was my second Ayahuasca trip to Iquitos and the best one! The focus of my second time was to complete my healing and was looking for a center that was truly focused on healing and wellness. Amaru Spirit was it!! I was refer to it by someone else that had been there recently. I got much more than I hoped for; most amazing experience of my life, not only am I healed, I'm forever awakened.

Slocum (owner) is amazing, very attentive; his guidance through out my 4 weeks at his center was priceless. He brews his own Ayahuasca, very powerful medicine. He is also very knowledgeable about food nutrition, and takes pride in understanding your concerns (physical, emotional or both) and works with you to heal both; pushing you only as far as you can go/ or what you can handle. He also suggests detoxes aimed to help move blocks for you have the best out of your Ayahuasca ceremonies. They worked beautifully for me. I'm finally free of somethings that have plagued my life; truly happy being me, healed!

Rooms: Best place you'll find in a jungle; a room with your own shower and toilet is possible; clean and comfortable.

Staff: Jan the manager tries to do whatever it takes for you to have an amazing experience. The staff are all kind, sweet people and work hard, true gems!!

Food: Slocum's knowledge in this area means you'll get the best food possible, healthy and organic. Typically, nutritious smoothies to start the day; the rest is based on what your situation.

There is so much love, support and kindness at this center; I plan to go back.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled solo
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2  Thank JustTravel_Live
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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61 - 67 of 87 reviews

Reviewed 10 July 2014

Amaru Spirit is absolutely AMAZING! This place is the real deal. So I recently returned home after a couple weeks down in Iquitos. I made my first ayahuasca trip in the summer of 2013 to a larger ayahuasca retreat which has a larger online presence. Happy with the experience and wanting to dive down further, I booked a return trip this year. After having already made my non-refundable reservations, I was chatting with a friend I made from last year's retreat and he told me about Amaru. The way he explained the smaller, more personal ceremonies and the way they were ran, I was very intrigued. Having already booked my reservations at the first place for a hefty chunk of change, I figured I would just go and try Amaru next time. Well I arrived a couple days early and contacted the owner, David "Slocum" Hewson to see if maybe I could at least come and check out his place while I was in the area. To my surprise, he quickly emailed me back and said he would be in the city that day and maybe we could meet up for lunch. So we met up and right away I felt extremely comfortable with him. He was just as my friend Satyen had explained: down to earth, zero ego, extremely knowledgable, very welcoming! Overall he was just a very cool guy that was fun to talk to! So after hanging out at a local restaurant for awhile, he said I could come back with him to check the place out. As soon as we arrived at the property, it just felt like home. The first place I was at felt more like a resort, but this place felt more like you were at someone's house. The property is really big and there are tambos (cabins) all over. The tambos are well situated to give the guests more privacy if they want it. There is a central house where the kitchen is and where everyone generally hangs out. Again, hanging out in the main house really felt like you were on someone's big farmhouse. Very loving and welcoming energy there. So right away I knew I really wanted to stay there, but I already had my reservations elsewhere. I took the last boat back to town before sundown and proceeded with my original plans. Once I arrived at the other place, I informed them the first night that I would be cutting my 12 day, 7 ceremony visit short. So the day after our 5th ceremony, I packed my bag and headed for Amaru. I arrived and talked to David and once again felt very at home. Since I was coming off of 3 ceremonies in a row from the first place, I decided just to take a break that first night. This was a great decision because dinner was EXCELLENT!!! Every day and every night at Amaru, the food is amazing. I'm no vegetarian, but if I were even half that creative in the kitchen with vegetables and super-foods, I would be one!!! I cannot talk enough about the food quality! They have this huge table and everyone just gathers around the table and enjoys the daily/nightly FEAST! (unless, of course, you are doing a ceremony that night) So after a good night's rest and a day of relaxation, I was ready for a ceremony.....................................So after 12 ceremonies over 2 years at the original place, nothing even came close to the ONE ceremony I had at Amaru!!!! Wow!!! All I can say is Wow!!!! I will tell you that the highlight was the personal work done on me by the owner, David! He came by my mat late in the ceremony and asked if I would like an energy clearing. Trusting in him, I agreed. Let's just say that if there ever was a small percentage of my brain that didn't believe in any of this energy, mumbo jumbo, hippy BS, it was completely erased!!!! Wow!! The personal work he did on me was unbelievable! I could not even believe it was happening while it was happening. I cannot thank Slocum enough! He pulled stuff out of me that I didn't even realize was in there! I had planned on doing 2 ceremonies with the medicine, but that one ceremony was so powerful, I just decided to rest and try to process all that had just taken place. I felt so good and light the next day and I really just didn't want to take the chance in messing it up. Now I'm back in "the world" and I still feel great! Very, very profound experience! :-) Now something else to really love about Amaru Spirit is the flexibility! Most places have a set program and everyone arrives together and goes through a process together. Amaru is nothing like that. If you want to stay 3 days, you stay 3 days. If you want to stay 3 months, you stay 3 months! People are coming and going all the time and you really have the freedom to do what you like or feel comfortable with. Mostly, I was just amazed at the level of knowledge that David has! Yes, he administers ayahuasca, but it seems that his real passion lyes in super-foods and plant diets! He's all about using plants to clean the body out and provide it with clarity and direction. I've never met a guy so knowledgable about such a variety of things, yet so down to earth and approachable as Slocum. So in the end, I feel like I found a home in the Amazon. There was a bit of me that felt like I wasted my time and money at the other place, but I guess it's all part of the journey and I'm just grateful that I found Amaru Spirit! I have definitely found the place I will return to for my next retreat with the medicine and am currently recommending it to anyone who is thinking about a trip to Iquitos. Thank you David, Jan, and the whole Amaru Spirit staff! Keep doing what you are doing!

Stayed: June 2014, travelled solo
9  Thank joshuas409
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2014

I recently had a great stay at Amaru Spirit. As I am a female travelling alone I spent alot of time researching and looking for a safe place to try Ayahuasca. Slocum and Jan could not have reassured me more and I took part in two ceremonies where I had very deep responses to the plant medicine. Throughout the ceremonies and the whole time I was there I was completely supported by Jan and Slocum. Alongside the cabins are spacious, comfortable and clean and the food is healthy, fresh and delicious! All of the staff there are just fantastic. I would highly recommend Amaru Spirit if you want to try plant medicine or cleanse and I hope to return sometime soon. Thanks for a great experience :)

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled solo
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3  Thank HolidayMaker666
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 June 2014

This was a phenomenal experience for me. I had an opportunity to be in this retreat for 8 days. My primary purpose was the treatment for my mum for insomnia. I was bit skeptical at first before getting connected to Slocum via emails. But as soon as we arrived there all the worries just melted away. Jann, the administrator of the retreat really explained beautifully the rules and the ways to optimize the experience. She helped us every step of the way. Slocum, "David Hewson" was such an amazing personality, so down to earth without a bit of ego and without rushing you into his talks, he explained every thing, every way he can, slowly in the language that me & my mum can understand and given so much attention to us while treating my mum, the medicines, the food, the non-stop asking about her progress and updating on the future doses of the medicine he was going to give her, that just mesmerized me. Out of 7 nights in the retreat, my mum was able to sleep (good sleep) for about 3 & 1/2 nights. That was a huge deal for the person who haven't had good natural sleep in last 20 years of her life. Personally, I was very contained and my mum was very happy about it. Her relaxation continues after coming back from retreat. Slocum showed her how to do breathing exercises, meditative techniques and change in her food pattern, what kind of food she can eat etc. She did follow his advise and seeing much better results now. Well, for me, I had about 3 ceremonies, two were mild since I wanted to focus on my mum's recovery and one was intense. Shaman was great on the 1st ceremony and the group was small and very well contained, and cared for. Made many great friends over there. I was amazed to see the author of the book "The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo" - Peter Cloudsley was there too. I was specially impressed when he sang the praises of Slocum. Peter had his own retreats in Amazon and personally he preferred to be with Amaru Spirit for the cleanse. Slocum not only does the ceremonies, but he is well popular for Tobacco dieta and other forms of the cleansing techniques using variety of plants. Which I had seldom seen in the other retreats or in a very limited fashion. I tried tobacco purge myself and felt the huge difference in the thought patterns. There's Sanango diet and San Pedro diet as well.
Rooms were clean, huge and well maintained. bathrooms every house. Electricity available in the kitchen and good phone connection. Very good library and other resources. Breakfast is an excellent superfood smoothie. Lunch & dinners were mainly vegetarian and absolutely delicious and changing every day. They had fish every few days.

Overall, after trying three other retreats, I've settled down with Amaru Spirit. Thank you Slocum, Thank you Yolita & Jann!! Keep up the good work!

Room Tip: All the rooms are beautiful!
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
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4  Thank Sat N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2014

After being presented with many other tempting retreat choices in Iquitos I plumped for Amaru Spirit after a recommendation from a friend. And thank goodness I did. The other places looked wonderful but I know they couldn't have possibly compared with the first hand support and expertise I received at Amaru during my stay.
As a complete newbie to both South America and plant medicine ceremonies I was guided with utter professionalism and held with care and love. I was treated with various plant medicines tailored to my very needs and my experience was transformational. The accomodation and setting are simply exquisite, the organic 'super' food both delicious and a medicine in itself. The Amaru family couldn't have done a better job at soothing my nerves through what I am sure will be the most profound trip of my life.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled solo
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3  Thank LadyFleur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2014

I stayed twelve days in May 2014, with a friend, on the basis of a recommendation from a friend of hers. I had drunk ayahuasca before, so but otherwise knew nothing about the centre or their philosophy.

I can honestly say, that over fifteen years of working as an expedition leader and tour guide on three continents, I have rarely come across an establishment which scores so highly across every single aspect: the design and layout of the camp itself; the care and professionalism of every member of the team; delicious, varied, simple healthy cuisine; and the free-flowing, spontaneous learning and insight which flows from such a cradle of hospitality and vision.

Long may their work continue, providing such a valuable service to humankind and the planet.
Listen to me, talking like some kind of New Age hippy! That’s the effect Amaru Spirit had: helping me to reconnect with myself, and the world around.

Don't go unless you're ready... and then, don't go anywhere else!

Room Tip: Every cabin is unique, and all are thoughtfully constructed in harmony with their location.
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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3  Thank GregOnTheButterfly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 May 2014

Having stayed for a month, I can attest to the fact that Slocum and the entire Amaru Spirit family run their camp with genuine love and the purest of intentions.

Although I had a fantastic time, I must stress that this was no vacation and the work you put in is what you get out... Tenfold.

A tobacco dieta with Ernesto to purify and cleanse spirit, mind and body during the first week, followed by 2 1/2 weeks worth of incredibly transformative (and humbling) ayahuasca ceremonies in a safe, hallowed environment and integrative San Pedro at the end.

Through the entire duration, the food was delicious - a great balance of raw, cooked vegan/vegetarian, and less than 10% meat/fish on special occasions (cutting dieta) prepared by the bright and cheerful girls in the kitchen with amazing quality homegrown and locally sourced ingredients. The lush jungle compound is safe and secure. The hand-built habitation molokas were spartan but all have a unique character and were well furnished.

Slocum is a incredibly talented and learned man with the utmost of integrity and a true passion for seeking out and sharing the knowledge of the plants.

Everybody's experience will vary but I left Slocum's camp a changed person for the better, my mind stretched and opened in ways I never previously imagined and have continued to practice much of what I learned there in my daily life for the betterment of myself and those around me.

I am forever grateful for the experience and consider myself lucky to have found Amaru Spirit amidst so many others (or perhaps it found me).

  • Stayed: April 2014
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3  Thank SteveSang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Amaru Spirit

Address: Rio Itaya, Iquitos 16000, Peru
Region: Peru > Loreto Region > Iquitos
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 90 Speciality Lodging in Iquitos
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Amaru Spirit is a holistic healing retreat center located in the jungle outside of Iquitos, Peru. We emphasize the creative element in life-- it is a place where you can explore questions of the spirit in a creative way. We use raw foods, superfoods, plant diets, liver/gall bladder flushes, and other methods for connecting people back to their true nature by providing time and space for our guests to harmonize with the nature around them. ... more   less 

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