FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

COVID-19 TRAVEL PROTOCOL IN PERU

  • 48 hours prior to your trip, all travellers must fill in a sworn statement – Peru’s Travel Affidavit – declaring they have no COVID-19 symptoms before travelling. You will have to show this form before boarding your international flight to Peru, once you get to immigration in Peru, and when you board your flight to Iquitos, so we recommend printing it out, although you can also have it on your phone.
  • Travellers who have been fully vaccinated 14 days or more (at the point of departure) before their entry to Peru are no longer required to present a negative PCR test upon entry to the country. Instead, they must present their COVID-19 vaccination card with the completed dose. If you have been vaccinated less than 14 days at the time of your departure you will still need to present a negative PCR test.
  • Travellers who have not been vaccinated are required to present a negative PCR test issued up to 48 hours prior to boarding. Children under 12 years old are only required to be asymptomatic to board.
  • For the domestic flights (Lima–Iquitos), passengers over 12 years old, will only be able to board if they prove to be fully vaccinated, either in Peru or abroad. Those over 40 years old will need to accredit the booster dose. Otherwise, they must show a negative molecular (PCR) test issued up to 48 hours prior to boarding.
  • For interprovincial land transportation (buses), passengers over 18 years old, will only be able to board if they prove to be fully vaccinated, either in Peru or abroad. Those over 40 years old will need to accredit the booster dose. Otherwise, they must show a negative molecular (PCR) test issued up to 48 hours prior to boarding.
  • For enclosed places (including restaurants, museums, and more), visitors over 18 years old, whether Peruvian or foreign, will only be able to enter if they prove to be fully vaccinated, either in Peru or abroad. Those over 40 years old will need to accredit the booster dose. The vaccination certificate can be physical or virtual.
  • KN95 masks are required throughout the country. You can also use a surgical mask coupled with a cloth mask.
  • These requirements may change, so we recommend you to contact your airline before booking the flights and a few days prior to your trip, to make sure you fulfil all the necessary requirements.
  • It is the responsibility of each passenger to inform Yosi Ocha about the test they need (PCR or antigen test) to be able to board the return flight, after the retreat. We will then coordinate everything so that you can travel home smoothly and safely.

 

WHAT IS THE WEATHER LIKE IN IQUITOS?

The climate in Iquitos is tropical, mainly warm and humid throughout the year. Temperatures commonly range between 20ºC and 32ºC (64ºF–89ºF). The hot season falls between August and December, and the cool season between May and July. The summers tend to be warm and cloudy, while the winters are short, hot and partly cloudy.

In the Amazon jungle, it rains on average 200 days a year, hence the name “rainforest”! The wet season stretches between January and April, while the drier season with more sunny days falls between June and October. So make sure you check the weather conditions prior to your departure and bring the necessary equipment for your trip.

The duration of the day in Iquitos only varies by 20 minutes throughout the year, with June 21st being the shortest day, and December 21st the longest. The earliest sunrise is at 5:30 and the latest at 6:00.  The earliest sunset is at 17:45 and the latest at 18:15.

 

WHAT CLOTHES SHOULD I WEAR?

It is advisable to bring:
– Summer clothes, preferably made of cotton or linen, and light colours
– T-shirts and some sweatshirts with long sleeves for the evenings
– Long and short pants
– Light coat or a sweatshirt
– A larger cotton scarf to cover the head and neck in the rainforest
– Sunglasses and a cap
– Sandals and/or flip flops
– Hiking shoes (or rubber boots) and socks for the walks in the jungle
– Raincoat and/or umbrella
– A few bathing suits and a sarong

We recommend packing the basic items and some clothing in your carry-on luggage, to avoid inconveniences in case of delay or loss of your checked baggage.

 

WHAT ELSE WOULD YOU RECOMMEND TAKING?

– A flashlight, or head torch for reading
– A flashlight for ceremonies, preferably with red or blue light adjustment
– Additional batteries
– Portable charger
– Reading material
– A notebook to keep a diary and a pen
– Sunscreen and mosquito repellent
– Plastic bags with zip closure to protect objects that may be damaged by moisture (phone, camera, etc.)

Frequently Asked Questions – YOSI OCHA Accommodation

DO I HAVE TO BRING BEDDING, TOWELS AND A MOSQUITO NET?

Our centre provides all these services. If you wish, you can bring a portable mosquito net to meditate in the forest.

 

CAN I USE SOAP, SHAMPOO, TOOTHPASTE, MOSQUITO REPELLENT, OR OTHER COSMETIC PRODUCTS?

It is advisable to bring natural products for the body (PH-neutral shampoo or body wash, fluoride-free toothpaste, coconut oil for the skin and hair, citronella mosquito repellent, etc.). If you have allergies or are very sensitive to mosquito bites, you can use an anti-mosquito repellent for tropical areas.

 

DO I NEED TO BE VACCINATED AND / OR TAKE MALARIA PILLS?

Currently, no vaccines are required to enter Peru. From our side, we do not recommend vaccinations just before starting the retreat, as they may interfere with the medicine. However, it is recommended to consult with the local centre of attention for international travellers to plan the trip well in advance, as some vaccines have an activation period of 10 to 15 days.

The risk of contracting malaria in the Loreto region is low. If you decide to take prophylaxis, we recommend Malarone (atovaquone/proguanil). Malaria prophylaxis with doxycycline or mefloquine does not interact well with Ayahuasca.

 

I DO NOT SPEAK SPANISH… IS THERE A TRANSLATOR IN THE CENTRE?

At Yosi Ocha, we provide Spanish-English translation services for guests that don’t speak Spanish.

WHAT AIRLINES FLY TO IQUITOS?

Frequently Asked Questions – What airlines fly to IquitosThree airlines fly directly from Lima to Iquitos:

You can book your flights through their websites or at the Lima airport. You can also check e-Destinos and Skyscanner for better-price deals.

Make sure you have enough time to comfortably change flights during your transit in Lima so that you don’t miss your flight to Iquitos if your first flight gets delayed.

 

HOW DO I GET FROM IQUITOS AIRPORT TO YOSI OCHA?

The transfer from and to the Iquitos airport, or your hotel in Iquitos, is included in the price of our retreats.

Yosi Ocha is located about 20 km from the Iquitos airport, which is a  45-minutes ride by car. Once you book your retreat, we will coordinate your pick-up at the airport, or we will pick you up at your hotel in Iquitos. If you land in Iquitos before 17:00, you will be able to enjoy the ride to our centre during daylight. If you arrive later, we can still pick you up and take you to Yosi Ocha on the same day.

 

HOW CAN I PAY FOR MY RETREAT?

You can book your retreat by paying 30% of the total amount through a Bank Wire Transfer or on our website using the secure PayPal platform:

    • by credit card WITHOUT having a PayPal account
    • using your PayPal account
The remaining 70% balance should be paid the latest 30 days prior to the beginning of your retreat through:
    • Bank Wire Transfer
    • Western Union
Once you confirm which option you prefer, we will provide you with the necessary information.

 

WHAT ARE THE PAYMENT CONDITIONS?

To book your retreat, you must make a reservation by paying 30% of the total amount and confirming the exact dates of your arrival and departure.

The remaining 70% balance must be paid the latest 30 days before the beginning of your retreat.

If you decide to book a retreat less than 30 days before the start of the retreat, you will have to pay the full price straight away.

 

IS IT ADVISABLE TO CARRY ADDITIONAL MONEY?

Shipibo Art

The price of the retreat includes the transfer from and to the Iquitos airport or hotel, accommodation and food, and all the treatments.

However, if you feel like taking back home a souvenir from Yosi Ocha, you can visit our small family shop with beautifully handcrafted works (necklaces, bracelets, traditional Shipibo fabrics and clothes) and ceremonial products (pipes, maracas, rapé, applicators for rapé, mapacho, palo santo, Agua de Florida, purifying colognes of Cananga, Ruda and rose, copal resin, etc.).

You may also want to try a traditional massage or sauna, which are NOT included in the price of the retreat – they cost 50 USD per session and should be paid in cash. If you decide to visit the city of Iquitos during your stay in the centre, the transportation will cost 100 Peruvian Soles (30 USD) for a one-way trip.

 

WHERE CAN I CHANGE OR WITHDRAW MONEY?

At Yosi Ocha, you can pay in Peruvian Soles and US dollars. We do not exchange money in the centre. You can change your local currency to Soles or USD at your city’s airport, Lima airport, or at Iquitos airport. You can also withdraw money from ATMs in Lima and Iquitos. Please note that there is often a limit of 200-400 USD per day/week, depending on your bank and your credit card.

 

IS IT NECESSARY TO DO A SPECIAL DIET BEFORE ARRIVING AT THE CENTER?

We advise you to consult our section Preparation an Ayahuasca retreat for more information regarding food. In principle, a preliminary diet is not mandatory, but it is highly advisable to abide by the following restrictions minimum 3 days prior to your arrival:
– No alcohol
– No drugs
– No antibiotics
– No pork, no red meat, no dairies
– Moderate use of salt, sugar and fats
– No sex/masturbation

 

I AM A VEGETARIAN (VEGAN), WHAT CAN I EAT DURING MY STAY AT THE CENTRE?

Our menu consists of a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, cereals and legumes, as well as eggs, fish and chicken from the region. If you do not eat products of animal origin, or have any type of food restriction (gluten, allergies, etc.), let us know in advance and we will do our best to offer you a personalized menu.

 

IS THERE ELECTRICITY AND INTERNET IN THE CENTER?

We have electricity produced by solar panels in the common areas: dining room, hammock room and ceremonial Maloka, but there is no electricity in the bungalows. We also have Internet, but the signal can be weakened by weather conditions and it is not reliable. However, as part of the retreat, we recommend reducing the use of all technology to the minimum necessary.

 

HOW OFTEN ARE CEREMONIES AND RITUALS TAKING PLACE?

Frequently Asked Questions – Daily Rituals at Yosi OchaAt Yosi Ocha, each patient receives a personalized treatment determined by Maestro Heberto after the initial diagnostic which is done during the first ceremony.

The general rule is that there are 4 Ayahuasca ceremonies and 1 San Pedro per week. You can see the preliminary programme for each retreat in Retreat Options.

In the morning, our guests usually enjoy energy-cleansing baths with medicinal plants and/or flowers. In the afternoon, they participate in traditional Shipibo rituals that are carefully preserved at Yosi Ocha.

 

WHEN A WOMAN IS MENSTRUATING, CAN SHE PARTICIPATE IN THE CEREMONIES?

Yes, you are welcome to participate in the ceremonies, but you must inform the maestro in advance so that he can do the necessary preparatory work.

 

WHAT KIND OF MEDICATIONS ARE CONTRAINDICATED WITH AYAHUASCA?

There are different types of medications that can interact negatively with Ayahuasca. In our section Preparation for a retreat, you will find detailed information on this topic. If you have additional questions about specific medications that you are taking, please do not hesitate to write to us and we will study your case personally.

 

Frequently Asked Questions – YOSI OCHA – Ayahuasca Retreat Center, PeruIS IT NECESSARY TO HAVE AN INTENTION TO WORK WITH AYAHUASCA?

It is recommended for everyone to have a clear purpose when they come to work with Ayahuasca. However, it is not absolutely necessary, you can also do a great job by simply opening your mind and allowing the process to unfold on its own. While it may be beneficial to have intentions, it is very important not to generate expectations. The medicine will always give us what we need, it will teach us only what we are prepared to learn, and it will rarely do so in a way that we might anticipate. Therefore, do not feel bad if you try to define an intention before travelling and this only generates more confusion. Rest assured, as Maestro Heberto will be by your side throughout your journey, at all times.

You can find more information about how to define your intention in the section: Preparation for a retreat.

 

HOW CAN I CONTACT YOU FOR ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?

If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will get back to you as soon as possible.