01 June 2016 The Amazon: Day Two
Talk about STUNNING. Today we departed early for a full day tour of the Amazon, situating ourself near Sandoval Lake – a hotspot for animal and plant diversity.
We started out via boat from our lodge, down the Amazon River, and to the entrance of the Tambopata National Reserve. Walking through a buffer zone of about a mile of beautiful trees, we finally entered the National Reserve. We heard the sounds of Macaws, Toucans, Howler Monkeys, and so many other beautiful animal species. While there are jaguars, pumas, sloths, and other big animals in the Rainforest – it is actually quite difficult to see them.
We decided instead to focus our attention on the beautiful plant life and small animal life around us. If you go to the Amazon, you will realize two things right from the start – the bird, insect, and reptile life is absolutely stunning. We saw Macaws, spider monkeys, leaf-carrier ants, caymans, turtles, bats, herons, and many many species of butterflies.
As we hoped on our small boats to maneuver through the small waterways of the rainforest, we were even further engulfed in the beauty around us. The swamplands opened up into a beautiful lake full of birds and water creatures (like otters and piranhas). We watched the otters fro quite some time and even had our own opportunity to swim in the Amazon.
As much as the hype says otherwise – piranhas are actually not dangerous and only live in certain parts of the Amazon lakes.
Our lunch stop was delicious – a type of Jungle rice with vegetables, chicken, eggs, and a delicious sauce. We will all definitely be making this recipe when we return home.
Our day ended smooth, with another beautiful boat ride back to our lodge and a delicious dinner. Our photos once again turned out beautiful – we are all sad the adventure will be over in just a couple days.