So what is Ayahuasca? Some of you will have come to this page already knowing, some of you will be looking into Ayahuasca for the very first time, some of you will need to know every detail about the scientific and technical breakdown of the plant and its effect on the human body and mind, some of you will just have blind faith, but one thing that you will all have in common is that you are experiencing a calling from something that you cant quite describe. Here at Maya we believe that not only do we have the perfect environment and setting for you to explore what this beautiful and sacred medicine has to offer, but we also believe that our healer and his calling to work with Ayahuasca is the most genuine that we have come across and we are very confident that whatever it may be that you are searching for that you will find it here at Maya.

The name 'Ayahuasca' comes from the Quechuan word 'Ajawaska', which, when translated means either 'Vine of the soul' or 'Rope of death', here at Maya we tend to prefer 'Vine of the Soul'. Ayahuasca has been used for thousands of years by the indigenous tribes of the Amazon Basin for healing, insights and spiritual cleansing. Nowadays, as us Westerners get further and further away from our true selves we are naturally approaching a state of unhappiness, lack of fullfilment or seeking some sort of true purpose, at Maya we believe that Ayahuasca is the medicine that can help us to find exactly what it is that we are missing in our lives and that is why the popularity and use of this medicine continues to grow all over the world.

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Maya Retreat Iquitos

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An Ayahuasca Medicine centre.

The Maya Retreat is located in the Peruvian Amazon, approximately one hour travel time from the the jungle city of Iquitos.  At Maya, we like to keep things as traditional as possible, therefore we only offer Ayahuasca ceremonies and work with local medicines, we trust in Ayahuasca and we believe that she is more than enough to give us all of the clarity and healing that we need.

Our facilities include a natural spring pond for swimming, mud bath, showers, comfortable sleeping accommodation, all within a beautiful jungle setting.  We offer a safe and comfortable environment, with a very relaxed schedule so that you can fully connect and nurture your very own special connection to this beautiful medicine and plant spirit.  Our Shaman is fully trained and qualified and has covered many plant diets.  Here at Maya we consider ourselves very fortunate to have the opportunity to be able to introduce you to the world of Ayahuasca, we offer honest and concise advice and feedback, but only if required, we understand that each person has their own experience which is individual to them and all we try to do is to help you to nurture that connection, so that each person that comes through our door get the correct amount of healing and direction that their true path in life requires.

Please message Maya with any questions that you have about Ayahuasca and the mental and physical preparation involved in partaking in this incredible experience, we will be on hand at all times to provide you with the support you need before, during and after your time with us.

We hope to see you soon.

Much love
David, Paul and the rest of the Team at Maya.


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David Charlton
Shaman and Healer

David is our resident healer/curandero, born and raised in South Shields, England.  David first found Ayahuasca in Febuary 2012 in a desperate attempt to break free from years of anxiety and depression.  Following a bizarre sequence of events that can only be described as divine.  David made the decision to follow the new path that God was showing him and quit his job as a Charterd Surveyor working in Mayfair, London and headed out to the Peruvian Amazon to train under Don Ron Wheelock (The Gringo Shaman).  In less than 3 years David has gone from having never heard of Ayahuasca to completing his shamanic training and owning his very own Ayahuasca Healing Centre.

David now has many students of his own and has developed his own style of teaching, he is also gaining quite a reputation as a healer amongst the locals, with many of the indigenous coming to experience his healing and shamanic work.

For further information about David and the quality of his work, please go to the testimonial page or if you have any questions or queries please feel free to drop David an email, he is always happy to help. Here are a few reviews of David’s work:


The time I spent in the Jungle at Maya retreat was nothing short of Magical – Magical with a capital M. After becoming acquainted with everybody living and working on the retreat in a short space of time, the relationships became stronger and bonds were quickly formed with David, the other people Training, and the amazing staff, that will last a life time. The place itself is a centre of absolute beauty, a tranquil glade in the Forest that really lives up to the concept of a ‘retreat’ – the food is spectacular and the accommodation very comfortable whilst still retaining the alternative, natural connection, integrating the right amounts of comfort with a balance of disconnection from the speed and stresses of Modern life.

After drinking with four different native Shaman prior to arriving at the retreat, I naively thought I had experienced most of what Ayahuasca and Healing had to offer. After undergoing my first Plant diet (Ohay) and spending almost four days in solitary with no food or stimulation, my first Ceremony with David within the homely confines of probably my favourite place in the World, the Moloca, quite simply changed my understanding of everything. It changed the Spirit world, Spirit guides and Plant spirits from a concept I had not properly experienced, to a reality that I know exists.

From an artistic perspective, Davids ceremonies are breathtaking, the Icaros he performs and atmosphere he embodies are far beyond anything I had previously experienced during my 12 previous Ceremonies, however Artistic reviews aside; this man is the real deal –  his connection to, and reverence from the Spirit World becomes more and more evident as the ceremonies role by. This is a man that is walking a very different path to the one he originally set out on, a guy that has seen the darkness that exists in the world, looked it in the eyes and dedicated himself to the light, and a friend that I know is capable of Healing on a level beyond anyone else I’ve so far encountered.
I have no doubt that in this world, everyone isn’t for everyone, but if you are looking, like I was, for someone that will understand where you’re coming from, from a non-judgemental point of view, then this is your Shaman, and this is the place for you.

It’s been two months since I left the Jungle, and I feel I’m in a great position, after analysing my own behaviour and body since leaving the Jungle – I feel like these observations will be helpful for people looking for deep healing, as anyone can leave an Ayahuasca ceremony saying they’re healed after a profound experience, but longevity is the real proof in the pudding. There have been noticeable differences in the physiology of my body – despite not having the best diet (compared to the Jungle!) Since i got back, my body does now not give me the chronic heartburn that I used to get from even the smallest amount of bread. I used to suffer a repetitive STD that would come back every few weeks which I have not encountered since leaving. My sleep is undisturbed compared to waking up several times a night to go to the toilet. There are more instances that I have noticed, that are becoming more evident as I am living back in a Western routine – and these are changes physically. Mentally, I have not become depressed and sluggish as I used to frequently become quite often. I have been much more disciplined and orderly and much calmer and more patient than before. The most noticeable mental change however has been in the unstoppable creativity that has been awakened inside of me, Music, drawing and singing are things that I have always craved to be able to do and I have been given the ability to do all three. I feel truly blessed.

Inevitably the pressures of the modern lifestyle effect us all, and as I now understand it – that way of living is far from natural, and David, Maya, the Plants, and God have given me such a great insight into how I can change my life style completely, which is why I am returning to the Jungle long term with my Girlfriend (that I would never have without my experiences in Peru).

From the bottom of my heart I would recommend this retreat and I hope the passion in my words (that i have had to shorten so they will actually fit on the website!) will inspire you to recognise that you don’t have to keep suffering, and to take the leap, and to have faith in God, the Universe, or whatever you want to call the unstoppable supersonic psychedelic conjuring force that created up this mythical, magical, madness.
Please feel free to contact me on Facebook under Tom Rankin, or email me at tom_rankin@hotmail.co.uk if you wana chat any more about what on Earth has gone on for me over the last few Months.

Massive Love and I hope to see you soon!


What can I say to the work of David Charlton, for he is a true and real healer and whats more he has become a great friend in the process.

It was the one year anniversary this weekend to the failure of my marriage in that year I faced and overcame the worst and darkest moments of my whole life for I was battling a depression that had crippled me and a darkness that would not let me go.

When I first met David I was a very lost, confused and sick man in January 2015, it seems like another life ago now to be sitting here only a few short months later and looking at all I have done and completed I would not be here if it wasnt for David.

Last year I had a successful life and lovely fiance but a darkness took me and set about ruining my life and bringing me away from my true path. In the matter of a few short months my wonderful life came crashing down and I was bedridden living at home with my family again unable to leave my room, unable to eat and unable to look toward the future, everyday was the same and I often thought of taking my life. I spent months in therapy and on anti depressants but nothing seemed to be working, my fiance would not talk to me, I had no money and felt all alone living in rural Ireland.

And yet it was at the darkest moment when I was going to end it all and take my life that a friend reached out and kindly organised for me to see David. Indeed I am a very blessed man for my two friends organised to fly me to see David in the UK and David himself took care of me.

My two day healing with David was an illuminating experience I learned many things about myself and although it was strange I came away from it feeling that something in me had changed that the darkness had left. And indeed it had for within a few days I began to feel stronger and feel a purpose in myself I wrote my story down and it was published in an article in Ireland and within a few days I was on national radio talking about my journey through depression, what happened next was possibly the most amazing thing ever in my life, a man was on his way to kill himself when he heard me on the radio but hearing my words of hope and light he decided not to, the story made all the newspapers in Ireland and I was called a hero, but really I was just so happy that I was in the light and able to bring another back from the darkness, none of this would be possible without David and his work.

In the time since I have seen David and been healed I have published my first book, wrote my second and taken a new lease on life. I overcame my depression, started exercising and eating right and for the first time in my life feel at one and at peace.
This man has a gift and has helped so many people, he will help you too I have no doubt.


David all my life I have been searching for a way to connect with God and serve him even as a child.

As a child growing up with the nuns I knew deep within they were not saying who God truly was and I knew it was love not fear. They were cruel and dark and full of fear. It wasn’t about being punished or being bad. I thought I wanted to be a nun for a long time to serve God but knew that’s wasn’t the way for me. Religion made me uneasy and found them not authentic or love or matching what I felt deep within.

I have searched for a long time to be inspired by someone who lives breathes and teaches about God and Jesus and I suppose what heaven is made up of collectively universe angels plant and animal kingdom and humans. I know it’s about being love and giving and living with love to all. You are truly the first person I have been inspired by who is not about religion but yet oozes God in everyday how you live and serve and act.

I can’t put into words what’s happening right now David what I truly feel in my heart, it feels wide open and it’s something that I feel so grateful for. I am so passionate about living my life in this way and teaching and serving in every way I can. I trust and I am ready. I am afraid and yet I am fearless. Since I have met you at jeans house I have been on a huge journey and ayahuasca has been a blessing and huge teaching and growth for me.

Thank you seems so small and inadequate for how I want to express everything you have brought and are bringing into my life. Bless you David with all my heart. Truly and always for teaching me plain and simple that love is God and god is love and you shine and ooze this and are allowing me to learn and do the same! With love and gratitude on this special journey… Who knew eh!!! Xxxxxx

Hi gorgeous thing. I was gutted I didn’t get to squeeze and thank you goodbye on Monday so I was happy I took the little opportunity to tell you how special you are and what an incredible soul and shaman you are. Truly, a lot of people, including me, are extremely lucky that you have found your path, and can now help us find ours with the true love and light of aya. And Jesus, I have never laughed like I did on Sunday, my laugh has actually changed!

I can now hear what my real laugh sounds like! And your songs, your singing, your guidance, everything you do, oh my goodness, my love and respect for you grew deeper and deeper. I just can’t thank you enough or tell you how deeply I love you! But there was no need to share on Monday. The magic, the presence of aya when she truly, fully arrived was clear, more than clear. I was in awe, I still am. It was true aya magic.

She was extremely present there with us. It was holy, it was almost beyond belief, if only aya hadn’t been so strong and clear and impossible to doubt. I saw her, felt her, how she works, how she heals others by guiding them to heal each other, how she loves, how she wants us to live, how she struggles, how she dances, how beautiful she is and how present and all around she is and how magic she is and how she needs every little and large thing to happen for beautiful reason, no matter how long the struggle or journey she is extremely clever, beyond it. She was streaming through all of us.

The energy was bizarre and very visible. I’ll tell ye one thing it was a flipping game changer. Sorry for the essay, thank you for everything. I need to come back to you guys, I need to make it work for July. No matter what I’m seeing you both again! And from December I’ll be gone for quite a while. Peru then India! So grateful to have been introduced to you. And thank you for my second healing, that was a scary old few moments with aya and I know she was being gently very serious with me.

You’re amazing, cherubs amazing, you’re amazing together, beyond pure comprehension. Loads and loads and flipping loads of love. And thanks, in case I didn’t make that clear already. See you again.


To David

I love you so so so so so much, words do not even come close to how much i love you and how much you mean to me.  Thank you for all of your love and help over the last week.  I feel eternally blessed to have you in my life.  I’m so happy that my bright light has been switched on and that I have you and God showering me with endless love.  I will miss you so much, I’m counting the days until I’m back.

I love you


Where do I begin?

I have never come across anyone as pure or as special as you.  Not only do you help people but the way in which you help people is with such class and such love that it creates this unbelievable force.  The atmosphere you create around this beautiful place is a healing in itself.  I feel truly blessed to have spent time with you, watched you, learnt from you and giggled with you.  Saying that I was meant to come here is an understatement but what I’ve found here feels like its rewired me.  God is the only way and through God I do not have to be afraid of getting lost again.  God is love and I know that I have a lot of love to give.  Love has found me and love has given me a woman and when I look at her and think of her it brings me straight back to God and how grateful I am.

I am so proud of you, what you are doing  and how happy you are really is an inspiration.  Thank you so much for being real and thank you so much for helping me, Chloe, Maddy and all of the people that you have touched.

I love you, your Mam loves you and God loves you.

I look forward to seeing you in Barbados! x x x


Dear David,

I saved your letter until last.  It took me 3 letters to get my nerd on and it takes a bit of time to turn on the old switchboard. I know that words will never be enough to express my gratitude for the gifts that you have allowed me to re-discover.  I don’t know what I was expecting from Shamanism but I certainly wasn’t expecting what I received.  Don’t say it too loud in case someone hears but I am so glad that it turned out the way that it did.  Every step that I take, which gets me closer to God will be a step that that you have taught me to take.  I have had a shocking history with male role models, but I think at last I have found a man who I can always look up to.  Your spontaneous humour always throws me in the deep end and it has been so much fun playing the mind games you have offered to me.  I have the deepest respect for your being and for your gifts and I want you to know that God led me to you.  I am still not 100% sure if all of this is genuinely happening to me because I have been waiting my whole life for this moment and now it has finally come.  The day where I don’t stamp my feet and shine my light too bright because of fear.  Today I walk lighter, the promised day has come, I have met my saviour and I write to him now.  Thank you for allowing me to borrow advice, I know how cute you must find it that a 21 year old dweeb from Australia is communicating on such a level with you.  Good luck with your fast, I will be thinking about you, sorry for the deep and meaningful cheese, yes I do know this is a vegan retreat!

With love from your convict amigo.


Dear David,

I have no words to describe how much I’m happy that I met you!  From the first email that I got from you, I knew that I got from you, I knew that I’m coming to the right place.  A short time that I spend here, changed my life forever, I feel like I was sleeping  and just woke up, thank you for everything!!

I will miss you so much your jokes, your smile and your kindness.

I hope that I will be back very soon!

Love you from all my heart.


Last weekend I participated in 3 ceremonies with David.

David has learned from the best and it shows!! He and his assistent Cherub mentioned they will visit you later this year and both are some of the most amazing souls ever to wandered this dimension.

I specifically choose to journey with David because I met him at El Purguero and know and fully trust and respect him as a healer. The fact that David is a protege of the powerful ‘Gringo Shaman of the Amazon’ sure was a large factor in my decision to drink with him.

I am writing to extend my Love, respect and sincere compliments toward your training of another amazing healer.As I understand it training to be a Shaman is insanely hard work and not even much of a ’training’ in the classical sense… The trainee has to figure out and learn most solely by him/her self. David has earned mine and many others’ deepest respect!!

You can be proud of having schooled this one Ron! Lots of love and respect always!

Frank Boer

Hi David!

How are you doing? Hope you are all well and surrounded by bright and beautiful souls as always.

Time flies like crazy and almost a month has passed since I left Maya. I really wanted to share my post-ayahuasca experience and feelings with you. Because some things just become clearer by time. On one hand seems like nothing has really changed in me but on the other everything is so different.

Of course everyone wants to hear how did it go down in the jungle and telling my story to my friends and family I clarify what actually happened to myself. Yes, I felt full with happiness, appreciation and peace when I just left jungle, but since then it has been growing in me even when I am here in world full of busy people and material things. This re-telling of my experience makes me realise how much all the plants and  ayahuasca actually helped me and how it healed me.

And David, thank you, I am so grateful for the healing you did on me. I really feel like I have become very light and free from all the bad energies from the past. Even people who I meet now, who saw me last before I went to the jungle, keep telling me that my energies has change and that now I’m shinning out happiness and love more than before. As according to some before this journey I have had some bad energies that has been influenced by my drug use and twisty life style and people used to feel it. So when I hear things like that coming from people I care, I really understand how many good things has happened to me during my time in jungle and how these changes affect not only me but people I’m surrounded by.

Also during my last ceremony, I was taken trough some nature landscapes and I was introduced to some new plants. Could it be that ayahuasca pointed out the plants I should diet on in the future? Anyway, I know my path will lead me back to the jungle and ayahuasca sooner or later and that there is so much I want to learn about plants and spirit world.

Lots of love and Happiness

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Edison is the main man at Maya, he has been a part of Maya right from the very start.  Edison is only 23 years old and can pretty much do anything, he constantly surprises us with his ingenuity and desire to make our guests have the most comfortable stay at Maya.

Edison also has an extensive knowledge of the jungle plants and local remedies, every centre should have an Edy, he truly is the most amazing worker we could ever wish for. 

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Roman, or el Machino as we like to call him is a qualified nurse and medic and genuinely one of the hardest workers that God has ever created.

Roman had never drank Ayahuasca before working at Maya but now he is pretty much an ever present in ceremonies.  Roman has so much love and respect for Ayahuasca and the people who come to us for healing that he is truly a blessing to have around the place.

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Martha is our lavadera lady and pretty much the unofficial boss at Maya, having 34 grandchildren means that she is used to keeping things in check.  Martha has a natural warmth and guests love her sense of humour, Martha genuinely cant do enough to help the people who come through our door.
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Francis is our main cook at Maya, specialising in healthy, tasty vegan cuisine.  As a cook Francis has really embraced the challenge of cooking vegan food.  So many people that both taste and nutrition must be compromised on the Ayahuasca detox, but here at Maya we understand the importance of a good, healthy, sustainable diet in the overall process of healing and all of our guests are blown away by the quality of the food that we serve at Maya.
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Valentine is our resident Italian bringing a Mediterranean touch to the centre. She speaks fluent Italian, Spanish and English and is always happy to help Guests. Valentina has an excellent connection with God and the plants and is training to be a healer/curandero under the expert tutelage of David.
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Ishi is our resident pit bull and guardian of our property, she is the most friendly dog and absolutely loves people.  Ishi will often wait outside of the Maloca on a ceremony night, guiding people to and from the toilets, Ishi also waits up on a nightime and walks people to their rooms, she is a little superstar and our guests, staff and local residents all love Ishi.
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Bella is the eldest of our two dogs, she is super intelligent and super sensitive, she is the perfect balance to our other dog.  Bella is alert and seems to just know when people need her attention, she is a natural healer in herself.
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With more time at the site you will experience more ceremonies and more time to explore the beautiful setting of the Peruvian jungle, enjoy the Maya site itself and spend time with the Shaman and Maya team working on the breakthroughs you accomplish.

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Oje purge (deep spiritual and physical cleanse) Includes 4 Ayahuasca Ceremonies.

Here at Maya we dont want to overload you with an intensive itinery, it is such an important part of the process for people taking the medicine to have enough time to process their experience and to nurture their own connection with Ayahuasca.  We don’t serve San Pedro or Kambo as neither of these are traditionally used in conjunction with Ayahuasca and here at Maya we like to keep things as traditional as possible.  We are really only interested in giving people deep healing rather than a confusing cocktail of different experiences, we truly believe that Ayahuasca is all that we need.

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Unlimited healings and healing plant ceremonies that are needed to help whatever problems you have. You will discuss your problems, illnesses and worries with the staff to help us to work to help you as best we can. Flower and mud baths. Full board and lodgings including all meals. You will be put on a plant based healing diet devised by our top chefs in assistance from Givekitchen.com

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*Condition details in the page

Shamanistic training

Please contact David mayaretreatiquitos@gmail.com with regards to Shamanic Training.  David has a number of students at the moment so places are restricted.  We understand that Shamanic Training can be expensive and we are always happy to help in any way that we can to reduce the cost of this.