Mocoa, Colombia ~ Jungle-lite

Mocoa is a day-hiker’s dream. This lush landscape is streaming with trails waiting to be explored in the mountainous jungle terrain of Colombia’s Amazon. I’ve given Mocoa a little nickname, “jungle-lite”. I gave it the name because I think this is the perfect place for someone to visit who might be a little nervous about diving deep into the wild, but has the curiosity to sense the jungle. The day hikes around Mocoa are a great way to dip your toes into The Amazon and get a feel for it without going “full on Tarzan”. You will surely see colorful butterflies, interesting plant-life, and stunning waterfalls. But beware, It is highly likely you will leave ready for more jungle. Continue reading “Mocoa, Colombia ~ Jungle-lite”

Advertisements

Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve ~ Visiting the Jungle of Ecuador

So you are in Ecuador and want to see the Amazon?  A number of companies offer immersive jungle excursions in Cuyabeno Reserve, and I recommend the experience.  However, the planning part of this can be a bit confusing.  So this post is about what you can expect from your Cuyabeno jungle adventure and how to plan it out in the least confusing and exhausting way possible! Continue reading “Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve ~ Visiting the Jungle of Ecuador”

There Are Some Crazy-Ass Backpackers Out There.

“Stupid tourists”. Ever wonder why locals everywhere make fun of tourists?  Wonder no more. Continue reading “There Are Some Crazy-Ass Backpackers Out There.”

Tarzan Leaves The Jungle

This one is overdue. What do a gas stove, a wooden pepper grinder, a temperature nob in a shower, and a surf board have in common? Continue reading “Tarzan Leaves The Jungle”

Cuenca, Ecuador

I began my Ecuador explorations in the lovely city, Cuenca.  Cuenca has dozens of museums for art and history.  You can visit factories of the famed “Panama Hat” to learn how they are made (Yes, the Panama hat actually comes from Ecuador…).  You can walk the streets or follow the river.  There are even Incan ruins in the middle of city. Continue reading “Cuenca, Ecuador”

Ceremonies Of The Amazon

Anyone who visits the jungle in Rurrenabaque, Bolivia has the chance to participate in a native ritual ceremony.  The indigenous Tacana traditionally practice these ceremonies twice a week, on Tuesday’s and Fridays, and additionally for special occasions and events. Many jungle adventure tours will be sure to include the ceremony in your experience even if your tour does not fall on those days.

These ceremonies are about giving back to Pacha Mama (Mother Earth) for the abundance of resources and life she provides.  They are also an opportunity for the native people to ask for her protection from dangers, providence of food, and general well-being. Continue reading “Ceremonies Of The Amazon”

Amazon Junlge – Iquitos, Peru

You may know by know that I am quite enamored with the rainforest.  Iquitos, Peru is another launching point to the Amazon.  The main reason to visit Iquitos is preparation before a jungle excursion and rest afterwards.  Iquitos boasts that it is the world’s largest city inaccessible by car.   Continue reading “Amazon Junlge – Iquitos, Peru”

Paracas – Peru’s “Little Galopagos”

Paracas is located on the shores in the Ica provence south of Lima.  The bay waters are peaceful and the Humbolt Current runs just a little ways offshore all the way up to the Galapagos Islands in Equador.  The current stirs up nutrients attracting wild sea life in great variety.  A short boat trip away, Peru’s famous Ballestas Islands, popularly referred to as “The Little Galapagos”, rest along this current.  The islands are home to sea lions, penguins, pelicans, sharks, dolphins, whales, turtles and a hundred other bird species.  Not to mention, this place is a fisherman’s dream come true. Continue reading “Paracas – Peru’s “Little Galopagos””

How Not To Do Machu Picchu

First of all, Machu Picchu is amazing.  Even if your tour is as terrible as mine was.  No matter how you choose to do Machu Picchu, you should choose to do Machu Picchu.

With that said, I would do it very differently with the hindsight I now have. Continue reading “How Not To Do Machu Picchu”

The Ruins of Cusco & The Sacred Valley – Learn From My Mistakes.

I don’t think I did this region properly.  I don’t often say that.  But considering that the Inca Ruins were among the places that I was most excited to explore in South America, I have to be honest and say that if I ever do it a second time in life, I will do it differently.  Don’t get me wrong, I had a wonderful time and am thrilled that I finally made it here.  But those of you planning your Cusco trips, please learn from my mistakes! Continue reading “The Ruins of Cusco & The Sacred Valley – Learn From My Mistakes.”