Any given visit to the many small and medium-sized streams, known locally as “caños,” is simply fascinating! This morning we spotted many colorful bird species. Woodpeckers, tanagers, cotingas, jacamars, and kingfishers. Birds of prey were everywhere along the caño. Later in the afternoon, we had our second skiff ride of the day along Parahuachiro Caño. At sunset, we came back onboard with our minds and spirits filled with all the new adventures and feelings that the Upper Amazon has brought to our lives today.
This is our last full day exploring the Pacaya Samiria Reserve in the Upper Amazon in Peru. The week has been great. It was indeed full of surprises! The jungle is a surprise even for locals; this vast land is so huge that every day you can find an animal that you have never seen before or one that you rarely see. We visited a local community of people called Amazonas, like the river, because the community is located at the foot of the majestic Amazon River. Around four hundred people live here. This was the first opportunity for our guests to experience how people live in this remote area of our planet. We enjoyed a very warm welcome. The children were happy to greet visitors, and they were very curious. Our hosts prepared some local food and invited us inside one of their rustic houses made of local materials, such as wood, palm trees, and tree trunks. Inside, the atmosphere was very pleasant. Our hosts prepared local fish and some cassava and plantain, and they offered us a very delicious beverage called chapu, which is made of ripe plantain. After learning about their way of life, we visited a handicraft market. Some of the women from the community offered for sale elaborate, beautiful elements made from a local plant called chambira, a type of straw. Artisans use plants to dye the very strong material and use it to decorate their crafts. Later, we moved to Casual, a primary, protected forest. With the guidance of local experts, we explored the site and found all kinds of small creatures that are difficult to spot with our naked eyes. Our guides knew where to find tarantulas, miniature frogs, boas, anacondas, and sloths. We enjoyed our last moments in the magnificent jungle, a place full of wildlife. At night, we enjoyed our photo slideshow, in which our guests summarized their memories of all the great moments during our wonderful week exploring the Upper Amazon in Peru. After dinner, our talented crew performed. The music and dancing made for a memorable farewell event to say goodbye to our guests and to thank them for visiting with us in this astonishing place.