Story Publication logo December 27, 2022

Video: Psychedelic Amazon (Portuguese)


ayahuasca leafs and roots in a pot

Studies on the therapeutic potential of ayahuasca are driving a new wave of psychedelic tourism in...


This story excerpt was translated from Portuguese. To watch the original story in full, visit Psicodelicamente. You may also watch the original story on the Rainforest Journalism Fund website [here]. Our website is available in English, Spanish, bahasa Indonesia, French, and Portuguese.

There are no official figures, but it is estimated that Peru is one of the countries where ayahuasca is drunk the most in the world. To get a closer look at this scenario, Psychodelicamente magazine traveled to Pucallpa, in the Ucayali region, the mystical heart of the Peruvian Amazon forest.

The Shipibo people are one of the oldest holders of millennial knowledge involving ayahuasca and many other Amazonian plants. There, the impact of the movement that has been called the psychedelic renaissance has been on shamanic tourism, which has increased in recent years.

However, the growth in ayahuasca consumption and the flow of travelers to the Peruvian Amazon are threatening true traditional indigenous medicine. In this interview from the Psychedelic Amazon series, Shipibo-Conibo healers César Maynas, 51, and Fidelia Ahuanari, 45, talk about the impacts of the growing interest in the Amazonian psychoactive drink.

The family of shamans runs the Rao Kano Xobo (in Portuguese, casa da medicina) traditional medicine center, which has been operating for more than 25 years in Yarinacocha, about 20 minutes from downtown Pucallpa. "We use various plants, it's not just ayahuasca that heals," says Ahuanari.

The trips in the Psychedelic Amazon series were supported by the Pulitzer Center's Amazon Rainforest Journalism Fund and the Gabo Foundation and Open Society Foundations' Fund for Investigations and New Drug Narratives.

Video by Psicodelicamente. Peru, 2022.