Calanoa is a beautifully crafted jungle lodge just an hour's boat ride from Leticia in Colombia's Amazon region offering adventurous excursions of discovery.
This is a beautiful, well-located, well-run lodge with guest cabins built to a very high standard. Conceived, built (2010) and owned by famous artists and photographer Diego Samper, it offers spacious accommodation, great food and imaginative excursions.
There is one huge suite-cabin with a jungle view set apart from the other three cabins which have a river view. The cabins can accommodate 6-8 people in separate bedrooms on different floors, but if you are just a couple or smaller family you will have the cabin to yourselves.
The cabins have comfortable beds with good quality bed linen and mosquito netting, private bathrooms with flush toilets and tepid water shower (you really don’t need hot water in this steamy environment). The sides of some of the cabins are open with just netting to protect from insects – a wonderful jungle experience. There is electricity all day from solar panels and at lunchtime and the evening you can recharge your phone/camera as there is electric current through to the room sockets. Food, cooked by Maria, is excellent and meals are taken in a communal dining room.
Excursions are led by local indigenous guides - they don’t speak English but we will arrange for your English-speaking guide to accompany you to translate. The charming and friendly indigenous community Mocagua, famed for its art, is just a 20-minute walk away.
What our clients say
97% of our clients rated their experience with us as Excellent or Good.
Highlights?: Salt cathedral at Zipaquira, Communa 13 in Medellin and the thermal springs in Purace NPDC, Tarporley
Highlight: Tayrona National Park trekking and meeting the local community in nature environment.JS, Harrow
Highlight?: The coffee region and Cartagena were both spectacular to visit. Mompos was lovely and worth making the effort to get to.IR, London
Barichara and the walk to Guane. Also the village of Raquira.RH, London
Highlight?: The local knowledge of the guides and their willingness to adapt to our needs. We were taken to places that were not part of the schedule. E.g. Local restaurantsSD, Esher
Colombia was superb. A wonderful variety of scenery and cultures, and people trying their hardest to live normal lives and welcome visitors very genuinelyJK, Basingstoke
Colombia is a fascinating country with very friendly people. It is opening up to tourism, after years of conflict, and offers the prospect of an exciting, varied and economic holiday.JH, Chester
it was all very good For me, Colombia stands out as No.1 (I hoped it would be, even before I set off, and it was)FD, Sandwich
San Agustin (was the highlight)...which was superb.DB, London
Most Memorable Moment?: Impossible to pick one place/moment. A very varied and interesting few weeks. Cartagena was definitely a highlight.SJA, Malvern
Overall we had a wonderful holiday in Colombia and were very pleased we decided to visit this beautiful country. Colombia offers a huge variety of choice for travel, from the mainland to the islands and everywhere we went the Colombian people were extremely friendly and helpful. At no time did we feel in danger and safety for all visitors was obviously a priority for the Government.AW, Aylesbury
In terms of places, we liked Villa de Lleyva, Medellin and Cartagena and very much enjoyed Punta Faro but what struck us was the friendliness of the Colombian people that we met, their courtesy, good driving habits, lack of hassle etcAR, London
San Agustin and Isnos were amazing expereinces: cultures I knew nothing about and memorable sites and monuments.DG, Sheffield
Colombia was superb. A wonderful variety of scenery and cultures, and people trying their hardest to live normal lives and welcome visitors very genuinely.JK, Basingstoke
Highlight: The beauty of Cartagena's streets. The historic district of La Candelaria in Bogota. And finally standing in the main square of Villa de Leyva.TF, Wakefield
Enjoyed every aspect of our trip to Colombia. Fourteen years ago when we first visited the country we felt slightly on edge due to security situation. This time we experienced a very different feeling as we travelled around. Everyone we met seemed eager to show their country in a positive light and we sensed a population very proud of what their nation has to offer.JE, Sunbury On Thames
Our first visit (to Colombia) has stimulated a desire to return to experience more of this beautiful, friendly and welcoming countryGG, Banf
Highlights?: Coffee region and Tayrona, lovely people everywhereJM, St Albans
Highlight?: Difficult! As a general tourist, probably the Salt Cathedral, bur personally the return to Pereira after 42 years!JPM, London
It was a superb trip, I don’t think our feedback really conveyed how much we enjoyed Colombia particularly. It really exceeded our expectations. Los Llanos was super superb.SM, Helensburgh
It was a great trip, a nice balance of activity and free time and we felt we saw several different sides of Colombia.MJ, E14
Our two weeks in Colombia were extraordinarily stimulating on every level, from the warmth and friendliness of the Colombian people to the fertility of the countryside and its fascinating geology and topography, the extraordinary stone monuments created by different Indian cultures and the fine detail of their craftsmanship in gold, platinum and copper, to the amazing legacy of the Spanish conquistadores, and the energy, vitality and sophistication of Colombia today. The programme Tom Manchester devised was well conceived to introduce us to so many aspects of this richly diverse country. Although, or perhaps because, soldiers and police are much in evidence, we never felt at all nervous, or in the least concerned about our own safety. Our programme included four nights in Cartagena, two in Villa de Lleyva, three in San Agustin, and a total of four in Bogota, used essentially as a stopover on three occasions with one full day for exploring the city. We would strongly recommend all four places to anyone visiting Colombia, whatever else they might also wish to do.JM, London
When I told friends I was going to Colombia they immediately warned of guerrillas, drug barons and violence. This may have been true a few years ago, but Colombia felt safer to me than many other Latin American countries I've visited. It's a beautiful country with very warm, welcoming people.JB
From the trips arranged by JLA, we both found the Amazonas region wonderful. It was quite emotional seeing the Amazon River for the first time and floating around the tributaries, watching the birds and the monkeys. The fruits in Colombia were amazing and we enjoyed all the different juices. Another memorable part was the drive from Pereira to Medellin where you drive along the ridge with in places amazing views down into the valleys on both sides.MD, London
Our time in the South West (Huila and Cauca departments including the Tatacoa Desert, San Agustin, Popayan and Purace National Park) stood out. It was the most rewarding in terms of the landscape, the stunning variety of flora and crop plantations, and the incredibly friendly and polite people. The Tatacoa Desert, the mountains and gorges around San Agustin, and Purace National Park were all visually stunning. Having a wonderful guide (Milena Rodriguez) certainly helped.DE, Wilmslow
Very hard to say which was the most memorable: flour and shaving cream fights in San Agustin on New Year's Eve; stunning views of the Magdalena, both in the South and the North (including the ferry crossing and river boat tour in Mompox);WR, London
The whole trip was really enjoyable, the amount of wildlife (turtles, crocodiles, armadillo, anteater, monkeys etc etc!) and scenery we saw met all expectations. All well organised and minor problems were resolved quickly.HT, Cardiff
Highlights?: I cannot really think of anything that wasn't memorable. Perhaps my overriding memory is of the friendliness and helpfulness of the ordinary Colombians I encountered.DM, Nottingham
Loved it all!!
A trip with JLA is a trip with the local experts. They can respond quickly to challenges such as FCO advice not to visit an area and know the local people who can make the holiday really memorable. One other comment about Colombia - the people we encountered, of all ages, in the streets, shops, hotels etc were friendly, welcoming and the most polite I have met anywhere in the world!HR, Brentford
Highlight?: San Agustin statues for me, Cartagena for the kids.AGB, London
Tailor made holiday
Our specialists have been expertly crafting award-winning tailor-made holidays to Latin America for 40 years. We would be delighted to create a truly personalised trip which perfectly matches your wishes and requirements.
Ben Line - Travel Expert
Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.
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Real Latin America Experts
Lina Fuller - Travel Expert
Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.
Kathryn Rhodes - Travel Expert
Kathryn backpacked across Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before joining us. She has a degree in Philosophy and French and is a keen netball player.
Paul Winrow-Giffin - Travel Expert
After graduating in Computer Science, Paul spent seven months travelling from Colombia to Argentina and came home hooked on Latin America.
Carrie Gallagher - Travel Expert
A former JLA tour leader, Carrie brings a wealth of on-the-ground experience to our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours department.
Evie Oswald - Travel Expert
It's hard to believe that Evie has had time to cram so much in to her life so far. Having lived as a child in the Americas and Europe she found herself immediately attracted to Latin America.
Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Expert
Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.