We arrived in the city of Iquitos after the three day boat trip. Iquitos is the largest city in the world not accessible by road. We chose to visit the Manatee rescue centre, which was well worth the trip. The Manatees are lagoon manatees rescued from the Rainforest. There were two babies and four adults. And despite their less than appealing looks, manatees are the cutest and friendliest animals. The rescue centre also had turtles and otters. And a random monkey with a limp.
We then went off on our jungle trip, three days and two nights in the Amazon Rainforest. Our lodge was basic, but had mosquitos nets and the food was pretty good too.
On our first day we set out in the canoe, which we had to constantly bail out the water from, to see what we could find along the river bank. Our guides were incredible and could spot animals that we couldn't even see once they were pointed out to us. We managed to spot a lazy sloth in the tree, some iguanas, various birds and a monkey. In the evening we went to see the pink and grey dolphins, of which there were many, however getting a photo of them was pretty much impossible. We stopped for some freshly picked peanuts and then headed out to look for Caimans. Unfortunately the rain came (it is the Rainforest after all) and we decided to abandon our attempt. The boat journey back through the marshes with frequent flashes of lightening was surreal, all the while we were bailing the water out of the boat. On returning home our dinner of Catfish was waiting for us. Delicious. Also waiting was a hunter spider in our room, but Comando (our guide) assured us it wasn't dangerous so we left him be and hoped he'd eat the mosquitos.
We got up at 5am the following day to see the sunrise and go out looking for more sloths, monkeys and birds. We came across a whole bunch of monkeys, the names of them all I forget but there were some spider monkeys, a howler, squirrel and some titi monkeys. One of the spider monkeys kept trying to swing into our canoe, and whilst we were keeping him at bay another little guy landed right in the boat. We were also later joined by a parrot who thought he was going to come all the way back with us. Comando actually had to shew him out of the boat.
After breakfast we went back out into the jungle, this time on foot. Comando pointed out all the plants with poisonous and healing powers. We also tried ourselves a grub, surprisingly not disgusting, and some termites. We also managed to spot some scarlet macaws and the same lazy sloth, who was just waking up. We then went Piranah fishing and managed to catch three each, which was lucky as it was our lunch. Come the evening we went back out to try and find some caimans. We chose a different route, which Comando and Eduwardo (his right hand man) had to cut a path and at one point jump into the swamp water with the Anaconda. The caimans were out they are notoriously difficult to spot and none of us managed to see them in the dark. But we enjoyed the adventure in the swamp. When we got back we came across a Goliath Tarantula, who was actually pretty cute, and a baby Boa Constrictor.
On our final day in the jungle we walked a few hours to see some giant lily pads. Made a swing from the vines and saw lots more butterflies, bull (giant) ants and Macaws. We also came across a wild dog and a tree mouse. After our walk we took a dip in the river, after being assured that the Piranha weren't hungry and probably wouldn't bite us. And you will be glad to hear that we still have all our fingers and toes!