Leaving from Secret Garden hostel on a private night bus I was really excited for an organised tour in the jungle. I booked my tour with Secret Garden because they were so honest and helpful and I met a few people.who went with them recently. For 250dollars I wanted to be sure about who I went with. Ecuador is not cheap!
The private bus was ridiculously uncomfortable so I’m glad I have the public bus home more comfortable and cheaper! Arrived to a guesthouse at 5.30am with 2 others for a quick snooze in a hammock before our 3 dollar eggs and bread breakfast.
We joined a full 30 seater bus for the 2 hour journey to the river. We had lunch here and this is where we met our group. There was 7 of us. 4 from Germany, 2 from Netherlands and me.
Straight away the food was amazing so I knew I was going to be well fed. These trips really like to feed you!!
Making new butterfly friends before I’m even on the boat! The boat initially was such a novelty and I think we all had high expectations straight away. After 2 hours of just powering through the river seeing just a few birds we were all feeling a bit deflated. Looking back it’s not meant to be an animal watch really and every trip through the jungle is about luck, whatever happens happens.
We stayed in Caiman lodge Which was beautiful. Right in the centre of the jungle with a chill out area of hammocks and spotless comfy wooden huts.
After settling in we went to the lake which was dried up due to lack of rain. We walked around and watched the sunset then back for another delicious 3 course meal and a few beers before the electricity went out at 10.
8am breakfast of eggs and pancakes before a boat trip down the river followed by a 3 hour jungle walk. All the while spotting colourful birds,insects and spiders and we were lucky enough to find 2 snakes
The walk did get a bit boring and sweaty after a while but I think that’s was because I’m so used to fast paced tours. My time in the jungle definitely helped me to slow down and go at a slower p
We had some hammock time after the walk and huge lunch again! So nice to to relax without any WiFi or distractions just the sounds of the jungle. When siesta time was over it was back to the boat to see the sunset and then go Caiman searching in th
The Amazon yet again reminded me.of 2 things I regret not bringing; a kindle and a good camera. My camera was useless here to catch the amazing colours of birds and animals in the trees or Caiman peeking out of
We saw quite a few Caiman another snake and one of the lads got hit with a fish flying out of the water! #totesnormal 😉
Back for another feed and few beers. Loving the early nights finally catching up on
a few winks.
Woken up by the heavy amazonian rains during the night so cool to hear. This meant that the river rose a bit so boating was easier. It also meant that on the way to the community was got to see pink river dolphins. They weren’t exactly pink but still so cool to see!!
I was kinda dreading the community ‘touristy’ part but it was actually one of my favourite parts of the whole trip. We all got stuck in and got to help two local children make yuka bread from scratch which is made from just 1 ingredient-
yuka or melioc.
It was delicious we all made a tuna salad and ate it in the yuka. I even got to bring some of the extra back with me. Definitely goi
ng to try make it myself!
The Shaman arrived next and this was the chappy touristy part I was expecting, performing a ritual with leaves and smoke and that, but it didn’t last very long so it was bearable.
More animal watching on the way back, we saw a sloth! Then ofcourse more grub and chats before a night walk of the nearby forest.
This was much better than I expected we saw really unusual tree frogs, huge spiders and different types of crickets. Our guide was great for spotting things even in the dark.
Our last morning we got up at 6 for some early bird watching. We saw colourful parrots and a bird that l
ooked scarily like a branch.
Fed again and back on the boat for the 2 hours back to our bus stop. We were all very sad to be leaving,you really settle into the way of life here very fast. Not looking forward to going back to ‘real life’ again 😦 2 hour bus and then a 7 hour bus to Quito. Not fun! But has to
be done. Next stop Columbia 🙂