Brazil

Exploring the Amazon Rainforest

Courts and I decided to do a tour in the Amazon for two nights and three days before we left for our three month adventure. We booked with Manaus Booking, which besides not having a fan in our room, did everything they promised. This tour was pretty budget, but was perfect for what we needed.

On day one we arrived at our accommodation. The Anaconda Lodge is situated in the Amazon rainforest, isolated from everything and everyone, this seemed perfect to call home for the next two days. We were given lunch and then set off on a canoe tour through the mangroves. We were fortunate enough to see an Amazon snail, squirrel monkeys and a three-toed sloth! On the way back to our lodge, the sun was setting which was one of the most picturesque things I have ever seen. The reflections on the river and the colors were B-E-A-utiful! 

Taking a motorized canoe to our accommodation at Anaconda Lodge.
The water was so still in the mangroves, it was hard to tell where the water actually started.
A three-toed sloth taking its time to climb up the tree.
The reflection at sunset was breathe taking!

On our second day we went to visit Dessana. Dessana is an indigineous village in the Amazon, that has 10 families from 6 different tribes. It was interesting to learn a bit about the community, but unfortunately we did not get to interact with many locals. We also got to go and swim with pink river dolphins. This was the highlight for me. We could spend as long as we wanted with the dolphins but they were only fed for 10 minutes. In the afternoon we went piranha fishing. As it was close to the end of the rainy season, catching the fish proved to be challenging. But two out of the four of us were successful. Well done Courts! After fishing, we drove past Swallow Island. This was a magnificent site! For six months out of the year, thousands of swallows come to nest on the island. At sunset, they all return from feeding to sleep. We saw hundreds of swallows diving into the island. The sky looked as though it was covered with ants! After leaving the island, our guide was crocodile spotting on our way back to the lodge. We saw many red eyes in the water, but we were only able to see a several week old crocodile up close. But not to fear, as we had a crocodile as a neighbor at the lodge (yikes!).

Waking up early to watch the sunrise.
Dessana Village.
Swimming with the pink river dolphins.
Courts and her ‘huge’ piranha.
Watching the swallows return to Swallow Island.

Our last day included a hike through the rainforest. We hiked for about two hours and were covered in sweat and mosquitos. Seeing and briefly learning about the different trees, finding more squirel monkeys, seeing some tarantulas and seeing an anteater climb a tree made it worthwhile experience.

The first sunrise was so beautiful, I had to do it again on the second morning!
Hiking in the rainforest.
Hiking in the rainforest.
An anteater climbing up a tree.
Appreciating the reflections on the water for the last time before returning to the mainland.

This was a truly humbling escape from city life. Breathing in some of the cleanest air made it clear as to why the Amazon rainforest is referred to as the lungs of the world. I am hugely grateful for this experience, and would definitely recommend you add this to your bucket list!

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