I am so relieved and thankful for my decision to choose Qhispikay Kawsay for my first ayahuasca ceremony/retreat. Selecting among the many options near Iquitos was difficult for someone naive to ayahuasca, and discerning which of the criteria were important was challenging despite doing a fair bit of research. I have never written a review before, but am compelled to do so about my time at Kawsay.
I can categorically say that any other center would not have been able to match what Qhispikay Kawsay offered during my stay. Make no mistake, the Shamans are a huge part of the healing process, and having available 3-4 who are authentic, knowledgeable, and dedicated was INVALUABLE. I can’t express the gratitude I felt to Don Romulo, Dom Winister and William for the work they did for me, which no other could have been able (or willing) to do. The combined years of experience far exceeds others, and they were able to address specific issues that arose during our stay (as part of the ceremonies and otherwise as needed). They are all gentle, sincere, hardworking, and inspiring souls.
The location where the ceremonies are conducted is indeed a magical place, the canoe rides at night helped prepare for the often difficult but rewarding journey that Mother Ayahuasca took us on. I was originally concerned that the medicine would not be strong enough but found that I did not even need a full dose for 3/4 ceremonies.
Other centers may dismiss or marginalize the impact of San Pedro (huachuma) ceremonies; however, under a Shaman specializing in Huachuma (William), this was FAR from the case. Some of the most powerful work at my retreat came with the San Pedro ceremony.
The food was as good as far as a no-salt, no-dairy, no-sugar (including fruit), no caffeine ayahuasca diet can be. This strict diet speaks to the commitment the center has to the healing process, and I did not find it overly burdensome. The few activities during the off-days were enough to keep us engaged while providing adequate time for the necessary reflection and integration of the experiences. William is always available and very willing to provide support, answer questions, share knowledge, and act as a much-needed anchor for the experience.
The ayahuasca experience itself words cannot describe. My reality has changed. I will be returning to Qhispikay Kawsay as soon as I am able.