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Travels in South America

The slow boat to Wasai

PERU | Tuesday, 30 September 2008 | Views [1032] | Comments [1]

We flew into Puerto Maldonado from Cusco.  We could have gone by road but it would have taken up to a week.  Puerto Maldonado was hot, hot, hot and extremely humid.  It also isn't that nice so we got to finding a jungle lodge straight away.  We blew the budget on somewhere expensive and got the boat down to the jungle lodge.  It took 5 long hours.  Despite being in the amazon basin we saw little along the way except a family of capybara and a hornet screamer (apparently a cool bird).  The only other people on our tour were two Norweigan ladies who were really nice.

The lodge was good, fairly basic but clean and surprisingly free of bugs.  That night we went on a bug walk and found little although there was a baby tarantula.  No snakes, no giant poisonous spiders, nothing falling from the trees.  The next day we went to a macaw clay lick to see loads of parrots and macaws.  There weren't that many but they were pretty cool.   The guide took us on a walk through the forest to find some more.  Now, we didn't actually see the elusive jaguar (not at all surprising, they're rarely seen) but we're almost certain the jaguar saw us.  We could hear it in the forest following us as we moved around.

That night we went on the river to look for caiman.  It is amazing how the guide finds these things.  I had trouble seeing them from two feet away with a torch pinted straight at them.  He could see them from the middle of the river just by flashing the torch over them.  Incredible.  You would really see nothing without a guide.  The last caiman we saw must have felt a bit threatened and did a little jump into the river, making us all jump.  Quite funny.

Last day we got the boat back and went to a huge lake called Lake Sandoval.  It was beautiful and we saw a family of Giant Otters.  They really were giant.  We sat watching them play for ages.  We canoed over to the other side and looked for birds and monkeys.  I famously said I saw 'half a monkey'.  Then everyone laughed at me.  I did see a monkey though.

That was pretty much the end of the tour, but the best was yet to come.  The next day when walking back to our room I saw what I thought was a statue on the fence.  After a second look I realised it was alive and it was a sloth.  It was so cute and had this really sad smile.  It also let us touch it.  I say let, it's so slow that I think it had no choice.  It seemed to enjoy having it's nose rubbed and it liked holding my hand.  It did not let Dave hold it's hand.  Maybe he thought Dave was getting a bit too friendly.  It then crawled across the floor and up a tree.  How cool.

We left the jungle the next day.  That wasn't such a bad thing because it's so hot there.  We flew back to Cusco and got straight on the bus to Puno.

The sloth holding my hand!

The sloth holding my hand!

Tags: jungle, puerto maldonado



jesus steph, sounds like you were gettin a bit "friendly" with that monkey! Mmmmm, and dave was not allowed touch him, Mmmmm me thinks :)

Cool pics and stories, keep up the good work!

  tommy Oct 3, 2008 5:53 AM

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