Adventures in the Amazon

No trip to South America is complete without a visit to the Amazon. While Brazil is a common starting-point for Amazon adventures, we were keen to get off the beaten track. More than half of Peru is covered by jungle and rainforest, making it a perfect place to explore the so-called ‘lungs of the world’.
We embarked on our jungle adventure from Puerto Maldonado, a ten-hour drive north of Cusco. My irrational (but very real) fear of moths and flappy things made me more than a little apprehensive about venturing too deep into the jungle. As a result, and in a bid to remain within budget for the month, we chose a three-day two-night jungle trek with Tambopata Trek. Not only was the trip great value for money, it was also educational, engaging and a lot of fun. Johanna and Kike, the business-owners, took great care of us and – despite the multitude of flappy things we encountered – we thoroughly enjoyed our experience.

We spent one of the nights in a homestay, with Esther and her adorable baby grandson. Esther lives in the middle of the jungle with no electricity and only the river to bathe in. It was humbling to see how resourceful she was, and had to be, and how beautifully simple her life is.

During the second day of our trek, en route to Esther’s house, we came across several bamboo plants. Wielding his machete, Kike sliced off metre of bamboo declaring it was ‘para cenar’ (for dinner). I was bamboozled – no pun intended – could you actually eat bamboo? What would it taste like? How would we cook it?
It wasn’t until later that we realised the bamboo was merely a vessel for yummier ingredients! Esther showed us how to stuff the bamboo with the chicken and vegetable mixture, before placing the bamboo trunks in a saucepan full of boiling water. She then covered them with giant leaves, and left the fire to do it’s thing. Check out this short video to see how it turned out. Don’t forget to subscribe!

Our jungle experience was without doubt one of the highlights of our trip, made all the more enjoyable by a taste of jungle-life from Esther and her family.

*Coming soon: how we made hot chocolate from cocoa-beans in the middle of the jungle*

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14 thoughts on “Adventures in the Amazon

  1. This looks like so much fun. I would love the chance to spend a couple nights in a jungle community — great that you got that local experience. And I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s afraid of moths 🙂

  2. That sounds like an amazing expierience ! I would love to visit amazon one day day spend night in a jungle with no electricity! What an adventure !! I bet you had a fabulous time! Great photos !

  3. You made hot chocolate from cocoa beans!? Can’t wait to read more about that! Would love to explore the Latin America more, especially Peru and the Amazonian bits of it after reading this post 🙂

  4. I’ve never been to South America, but I know that when I go, the Amazon is something I’ll have to check out. Watching everyone cook must have been incredible – food is like, my favourite part of travel! 🙂

  5. What an amazing experience to see how the other side lives. I love hearing about how people live off the land in other parts of the world. Not sure I would have been brave enough to rough it like that though! Well done.

  6. This post is so amazing! I have dreamed of exploring the Amazon and will definitely think about starting in Peru instead of Brazil 🙂

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