Nihue Rao Centro Espiritual

We are an ayahuasca retreat healing center, operating as a lodge in the Amazon rainforest. We are located 90 minutes outside of Iquitos, Peru near the small village of Llanchama along the Nanay River.

We provide traditional Shipibo medicine services wich includes: healing and learning diets, master plant medicine, and traditional Shipibo ayahuasca ceremonies.

Once you are here, you will meet with our shaman master healer Ricardo Amaringo, and with the asistance of a profesional translator, you can explain him your intention for the healing procces.

Your treatment will then be tailored to your personal needs, often including further treatment with a master plant. Furthermore, in traditional style, you will then adhere to a strict healing diet developed to promote the healing work of the curanderos and our medicinal plants.

Once on the diet, you will be invited to participate in ayahuasca ceremonies four times a week, for further ceremonial healing under the guidance of Ricardo and his assistants shamans. In ceremony, you will be further treated by the curanderos through the traditional healing song, called icaros. 

The day after every ayahuasca ceremony, with the exception of Fridays, there is a group discussion led by Ricardo to review experiences in the ceremony and the progress of all of our participants, apprentices and visitors.

In some cases, further treatment techniques are also indicated, including healing plant preparations for bathing and vapor treatment, or cataplasm.

Traditional treatment requires time, so visitors are encouraged to visit us for one week or more. Group programs are often designed for 10 days or 2 weeks and more advanced treatment can take one/two months or longer.

For particular individuals, we also offer traditional diets for learning under the guidance of Ricardo. This level of training is best discussed in person with Ricardo himself.

We charge an all-inclusive daily fee for our services, which covers transport from the Iquitos airport, private room, modern bathrooms and showers, diet meals, laundry service, electricity, wifi internet, traditional medicine and experienced international facilitator staff support.

If you are interested in visiting, please email us to establish contact and verify availability at our center. From that point, we can plan your visit! 

Tags: ayahuasca ayahuasca retreat ayahuasca retreats iquitos plant diets retreat ricardo amaringo shamanism shipibo

  Write a review - tell others about your experience.

  • Jorge Fernando Valdés Iga   November 20, 2017

      Healing on so many levels.

    Nihue Rao felt like the safest place on the planet. My ayahuasca experience couldn't have been better. I was able to heal a lot of myself. Physically, emotionally, psychologically, energetically / spiritually. I had to face some darkness in me, and this medicine is no joke, but now I feel realigned, centered, and at peace. Nihue Rao provides a safe place for you to go through your process. I was very blocked and depressed after a breakup. But I realized that my blocks stemmed from deeper issues that go back to my childhood. One ceremony felt like a year in every-day-therapy. And the talks that are held the day after at Nihue Rao were a very important part of the healing. I felt contained and taken care off. I could easily get advice anytime I needed. The facilitators there were open and kind. There is no judgment. Everyone there wants to help you heal. It was amazing. Thank you Nihue Rao. I'll be back soon.

  • Deyan Ivanov   November 11, 2017

      Nihue Rao will help you rebuild yourself. You enter broken and leave whole again.

    I wanted to thank everyone at Nihue Rao for helping me with my addiction to cigarettes, alcohol and a very popular treacherous over-the-counter nose decongestant (OXYMETAZOLINE CHIDROCHLORIDE). OXIMETAZOLINE CHIDROCHLORIDE is a highly addictive substance accessible in every convenience store or drug store across the USA. There are more than 7.5 million people who are suffering from addiction to it in the continental US alone. I got hooked up soon after I noticed a minor congestion that I wanted to eliminate. Afrin is one of the most popular brands. It helped me a lot but I was never able to stop using it. I sought the help of various doctors but no one was able to help me, or to prescribe a treatment. Most of them said that I needed to quit “cold turkey” or stop using it in one nostril until it heals, and then stop using it in the other. I was addicted to Afrin for more than 5 years spraying it in my nose 4-6 times a day. I had Afrin bottles in my car, in my house and in my office. I was suffering. Ayahuaska. I have been truly fascinated by Ayahuasca since the first time I came across information about it. This was around 2007 when I read an article about the Upper Amazon and the Peruvian Jungle and its people. I have researched it and I always felt drawn to it. When my friend George mentioned that he would be going down to the Amazon to a retreat I became really intrigued, although I didn’t share much with him. George came back quite transformed. He was off drugs and seemed somewhat focused, centered and easy to communicate with. He shared his experience with some close friends and I instantly knew that I’d soon follow his steps. In the late Summer of 2017 George, I and another close friend (Kosta) booked a 10 days retreat in Nihue Rao, starting around the end of Oct. My experience. The minute I entered Nihue rao I felt safe and calm. The Ayahuasca diet seemed to be a challenge to some people coming from the Western World, but it was quite natural and easy to handle for me and my friends. I was scared. I had heard stories of people who had seen demons and had terrible trips on Ayahuasca. I think that along whit those stories, I had disregarded the ones telling how intelligent, rich and beautiful the world of Ayahuasca is. I had also done some “Youtube research” on my own. Now I realize that all of these videos in night vision showing people twitching, crying or purging are in fact, rather detrimental to the true aspect of the healing power of Ayahuasca. And so, I had 6 ceremonies while dieting on Pinon Blanco (it does indeed sound like a bottle of white wine). Ayahuasca was very gentle with me. I purged a lot but I was not shown any demons or any terrible things whatsoever. She showed me the beauty of her world with its amazing colors and flow of energies. After the 4th ceremony I felt no need to use Afrin and I did not feel the urge to light a cigarette. It’s been almost 3 weeks now, and I have not smoked or used that spray or drank any alcohol. I felt that I wanted to share this with you since you. I believe that more than 7.5 million people can find a solution to their addiction through this medical plant. I realize that this acquaintance with the Spirit of La Madre has had a profound effect on my mind and my soul. Nihue Rao accepted me and became home for me and my friends. Maestro Ricardo Amaringo, Jan, Benoit, Alexandra, Martina and everyone there is family now. I am grateful and thankful for their support and understanding. I will be back to Nihue Rao very soon. Warm Regards,

  • Martina Drassl   October 22, 2017

      Pure medicine for everyone also for women who travel alone

    I came the first time to the center almost 7 years ago. I visited for a one month master plant diet and had a deep and profound healing experience. As a women I felt safe, protected and respected by the shamans. Since then I visited every year the center and met more women who arrived alone at the center. All of them had the experience that they have been treated well and respected. The staff at Nihue Rao always gave me good advices how to work in ceremony with Ayahuasca and the masterplant. The meetings with the shamans after the ceremonies were crucial and very important for my healing. They always knew where I was at. They were aware of what needed to be cleaned and healed. If I needed more help I could ask for it and I received more then one Ikaro (healing song) in one night. During ceremony I always felt taken care of, there are 2 experienced facilitators present in every ceremony, they help to the bathrooms and also when I have been having some struggles. I felt very supported during my healing experiences. The masterplants and Ayahuasca changed my life and I am very grateful for that.

  • George Arnaudov   October 22, 2017

      I was blessed that I went to Nihue Rao!

    Nihue Rao, the shamans Ricardo and Miguel, and the helpers and the rest of the workers there saved my life! A friend of mine recommended this place. I was going trough a divorce and at the time I had a girlfriend and the relationship was not doing good. That as well was bringing a lot of anger, depression and anxiety out of me. My life was a mess. 17 years ago I was as well for one year in a drug rehab. I do have an addictive personality. I started drinking and still training martial arts every day in the morning. It was very hard on my body. My mind was racing with negative thoughts. I have two kids and knew that I need to do something. Work was bad as well (I am self employed) and I owed money to all my friends, to the IRS and had no more credit cards and the banks where calling me all the time. The first time I went to Nihue Rao was in July 2016 for 10 days. Those 10 days changed my life. I came back a different person. Actually the same guy but without all the dark, negative baggage and all the problems did not look unsolvable. My approach to life changed. Not only work is better and I stopped drinking, but I stared rebuilding my relationships with all the people around me. The healing went much deeper than I expected. I saw and understood where all my problems started, where all my traumas came from. Now I have a much better relationship with my kids, parents, friends, even with my ex wife we put the arguments aside and living separate we still take good care of our kids. I forgave myself and all the people in my life. I feel free! Don’t need anymore anything like alcohol or any other drugs. Still going to the gym. My energy levels are much higher then they used to be ever before. My smile is real. I feel in peace. I was blessed that from the first time I went right to Nihue Rao. I have seen there many people that have been to other places and then they actually needed even more help to get out of the mess other “centers” got them into. It is not a joke. You have to be very careful where you go and with who you do Ayauasca. Make sure it is light shamans, shamans that are willing to help and do good. That have good intentions. Shamans that have dieted the right way the master plants and that have done many diets without any shortcuts. I was blessed that I went to Nihue Rao because Ricardo and the rest of the shamans there have good souls and are experts in working with Ayauasca. As well as Joe [last name removed by request] was saying once – Ricardo understands the type of problems that we have in the “developed” world. After I came back in 2016 all my friends saw the changes and I went within 1 year 4 more times bringing back people and witnessing miracles. I can not describe the joy I get from seeing the change in my friends and in me. We all are brothers and sisters and there is nothing better than to reach out and help the people that want to change for good. Thank you so much Nihuea Rao. Thank you Ricardo. Thank you Miguel, Thank you Benoit. Thank you Glennis. Thank you Joe. Thank you Cvita, Thank you Martina, Thank you Markus. Thank you to all the wonderful loving staff at the center. Thank you Mama Ayauasca and thank you Master Plants! Thank God! Love you all!

  • Jan Willem van der Poll   October 21, 2017

      My second home where I became who I am. Strong, centered, full of love and ready to do what I am here for.

    In 2014 I was in deep trouble and figured I needed to spend a longer time at some centre to focus on healing myself. I had heard about centres in Peru, so I went online to do some research. Thats when I found this presentation from Dr. Joe Tafur: He was at that time part owner of the centre together with Canadian artist Cvita Mamic and Ricardo Amaringo a Shipibo Shaman. The centre is now fully owned by Ricardo. The two weeks did me really good. The centre runs like a charm and the energies are so amazing. You can see everyday that people arrive and just within hours feel totally at home and ready to share their stories. Thats the real strength of this centre. There are 4 ceremonies per week 52 weeks of the year, with Ricardo the head shaman being there every single night. He is absolutely the hardest working man I have ever seen. He sings all night long, since he is so dedicated, diligent and committed to healing his passajeros. He does not miss a beat. This centre recommends you to stay for 10 days, as this has proven to be the most effective in getting your work done. On top of this, your will receive a plant dieta, which means the shaman will connect you with a master plant that will help you with your healing. The plant diets are so effective and beautiful in the sense you can really connect to them and commune with them. Ask them, and you will receive. After a year at home I got burned out at work, I quit and went back to Nihue Rao for two months. This really got the job done and did me so good, I added another month. Then, I got so excited that I wanted to learn the path of the medicine and learn the singing of Icaros to help others, that I decided to complete the 3 months with 9 more to make it a year. These were to most tough but rewarding months of my life. Ricardo really cleaned me out and so did the diet. My verdict is, that if you want to do serious healing or learning work I can highly recommend to come to Nihue Rao since this is really the focus here.

  • Enya   April 18, 2017

      On the whole, the energy there felt terrible, very dark, full of ego.

    I came to Nihue Rao for one week. I was experienced with Aya and other plant medicine. I got a very dusty bunk, with holes in the bed sheet, and dozens of dead bugs. That didn't feel very welcoming. It took over 24 hours to get the room cleaned up. On the whole, the energy there felt terrible, very dark, full of ego. I recommend to go elsewhere, to a place with strong ethics and integrity. When you are in a ceremony, you are extremely vulnerable. Make sure you go to a safe place - physically, emotionally, spiritually. Nihue Rao was none of those.

  • Nikolay Derkach   May 12, 2016

      Couldn't ask more

    The center is part owned by a shipibo shaman, another owner is Joe, an American MD. The place is no frills, so if you are looking for something besides plant medicines (like an extensive tour program), look elsewhere. The brew was very strong, very potent and is done right there on the premises. They had 4 male shamans during the ceremony but sometimes other folks join in to sing Icarus, it was like a whole orchestra. The center doesn't have scheduled retreats, people come and go as they wish. Some people do plant diets (I did one as well). Some folks stay a few months, and sometimes up to a year. I had a very productive time working with the medicine. We had about 2-3 facilitators who did an incredible job (especially Joe). This retreat is one of the oldest and they really care about the helming process. If I ever need to work with ayahuasca again, I'll come right back there. Highly recommended.

  •   Not your typical touristy center, they really focus on helping you heal - by John

    I had social anxiety, self hatred, and was extremely depressed. I thank God I chose Nihue Rao. The people who own the center come from their own unfortunate circumstances and so they know what if it feels like to be in your shoes. I was at the end of my rope and I didn't want to use anti-depressants or anti anxiety pills because I heard of too many negative stories from them. Plus these pills only bandaid the problem whereas these psychedelic medicines go straight to the root of the problem and help you heal from within. Its been 6 months since I went last December and I feel incredible. It was night and day from how I felt before to now. I can't recommend this place enough.

  •   I would love to go back to Nihue Rao for a longer stay next time - by Cerenurt

    Before gong to Nihue Rao, I'd been struggling with depression all summer long, was dealing with childhood abuse issues that had resurfaced including anger toward both my parents, and basically felt stuck in life. After coming home the depression was completely gone, my anger at my parents gone as well, and I was finally able to get my life coaching practice going and plan for my future. I started running almost every day, something I hadn't been able to do consistently in years, and had repaired two relationships with people I'd fallen out with. It's been 3 weeks and so far so good. Maybe I could have gotten the same healing at another center, but now that I know Joe and the Shamans and what to expect, I don't want to go anywhere else.


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