Blogs from Madidi, Beni Department, Bolivia, South America


South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi November 28th 2014

Puisque nous sommes à l'orée de la forêt amazonienne, pourquoi ne pas aller faire un petit tour au coeur du sujet, pour y découvrir d'un peu plus près la flore et la faune qui s'y trouve ?! Le parque Nacional Madidi, au coeur de la Bolivie, s'étend sur 1,8 millions d'hectares. Il préserve l'écosystème de la forêt tropicale, qui représente une grande partie des espèces animales présentes sur la planète et une inombrable variété d'espèces végétales. C'est un endroit protégé, surveillé (autant que faire se peut), où la dégradation des espèces est strictement interdites, ce qui sous-entend la chasse, la pêche, l'abattage des végétaux, etc. Des communautés indigènes vivent encore au sein du parc, et de nombreux projets communautaires y voient le jour. La selva, ou forêt amazonienne, représente la grande majorité de la superficie du ... read more
J1 - Cabane 1 ok
J1 - Dîner à la coca
J2 - Pas si grand le Max

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi October 15th 2014

13. Oktober, Rurrenabaque - Jungle Mit dem Boot ging es den breiten Fluss Beni entlang in den Jungle. Das Boot sah aus, wie die in Thailand mit einem Höllenmotor. Nach 1 h Fahrt waren wir am Ziel. Wir sind aus dem Boot ausgestiegen und zu Fuss durch den Wald ins Camp marschiert. Dort haben wir erfahren, dass dies das Zuhause von unserem Guide Nilo und seinen Eltern ist, welches komplett neu aufgebaut werden musste, da es im Januar eine Jahrhundertflut gab und das alte Haus von der Flut mitgerissen wurde. Nilos Vater hat uns eine Cacaofrucht aufgeschnitten und wir haben die Bohnen gelutscht, um das weisse Fruchtfleisch zu essen, welches nach Litchi schmeckt. Etwas später hat uns Nilo gezeigt, wie man Köder fürs Fischen findet: Palmenfrucht mit Stein aufschlagen und Larven rausnehmen. Diese sind auch ein ... read more
Hmm, Palmenlarven Fabi

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi June 30th 2013

After La Paz we spent a few nights in the beautiful valley town of Coroico, surrounded by colourful flowers and luscious greenery, even though it rained it was a pretty blissful spot. We stayed at a hostel up on the hillside, with hammocks, spectacular views and morning yoga classes. We walked to some waterfalls, although the scenery en route was more impressive than the falls themselves, as we walked passed coca fields, orange and banana trees and had great views across the valley. From nearby Yolosita we embarked on night bus to Rurrenabaque, the bumbiest bus ride I have ever experienced! The roads out of the valley were narrow, windy and on the cliff edge and for the rest of the way completely unsealed. At one point my bum left the seat so much my head ... read more
parrots on the cliff
breakfast duties
baby tarantula

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi September 3rd 2012

Heading into the jungle wasn’t part of our original plans as James was quite adamant from the beginning, that we would not go anywhere, where it was hot, humid and required large amounts of insect repellant. However, after chatting to a few people and hearing some good things about the Bolivian side of the Amazon, we adjusted our plans and squeezed a week in. It would also be a welcome treat after the high altitude mountains and cold temperatures! So last Monday we found ourselves at La Paz airport, booked onto the morning flight to Rurrenabaque, the small jungle town in northern Bolivia. The bus trip was a resounding no after hearing a few horror stories of the horrific 21 hour trip, along a few very scary mountain passes! After walking onto the runway and seeing ... read more
Arrival in Rurre
Vultures and Forest Condors
Our river transport

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi May 24th 2012

The next morning, we got up early to get our taxi to La Paz airport. We ordered our breakfast for 8am (it cost a bit extra) but it didn´t come till 8.15. We rushed out to our taxi, after gulping down our breakfast and the owner of the hostel came out and gave us our money back! We got our taxi to the airport and checked in. When it was time to board the plane we headed out onto the tarmac."Plane" is an overstatement. It was like a toy plane with propellers and held about 20 people. You couldn´t stand up straight in it! You could also see right into the cockpit- I still don´t know if that´s a good thing or a bad thing. The flight started off bumpy, but once we levelled out we ... read more
view from the plane
getting on the plane for the second time

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi January 15th 2012

So, it had just turned 4.30am and the four of us (Donna, Helen, Troy and I) were waiting in the reception of the hostel in order to jump in our cab to the airport. I was still a little delicate, but felt OK to travel, so this was good news being that I wouldn’t have to miss out on any of the action! On arrival at the airport, check-in and customs all went very smoothly, and before we knew it, we were in the departure gate 45 minutes away from our flight. Half an hour later and in true Bolivian style, we were told that the flight was delayed an hour due to bad weather in the jungle and so we waited. An hour later, we got the same message and so another hour passed. This ... read more
The airport in rurrenbache!
Our boat
Awesome views

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi August 11th 2011

The jungle was my personal challenge. Doing a trip into the jungle of South America is probably the most obvious trip for a tourist to do whilst in the continent. The prospect of spending time in an environment that contains giant spiders, snakes and every other creature that lurks in the nightmares, I couldn't wait to get there. The pampas tour is an easy animal spotting tour. The jungle was my personal challenge. We emptied our backpacks of all our possessions except for a couple of toiletries and a change of clothes before heading to Mogli's office and being loaded up with what felt like several tonnes of gear. Included in this heavy was a sleeping bag, a mosquito net and a bag of what we were told was food but felt like bricks. Joining Ciaran ... read more
Heading Through the Gap and To the Jungle
Considered Small in the Jungle
Friendly Ants

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi July 8th 2011

First, you have to get yourself to the Amazon. Which means, in the case of the Bolivian Amazon Jungle, either flying in from La Paz by bush plane, or taking a 15 hour bumpy bus down a path that includes the stretch of road dubbed “The World’s Most Dangerous Road” by an international banking community. I’m not sure why banks are in the business of finding the most dangerous roads. Anyhow, it was named this because of the percentage of deaths per year on it, including plunges of autos straight down cliffs. After reading this, I decided to take the plane. Even taking the plane is not ordinary. First of all, to fly into or out of La Paz, the capital city, takes extra precautions for the larger planes. La Paz has the world’s highest international ... read more
Snowy Peaks
Flying down into  the Amazon
RIo Beni River

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi July 8th 2011

I had been sick in Bolivia for five days. REALLY sick. Lying in bed and moaning sick. Almost sick and scared enough to go to a Third World hospital. I won’t go into details, let’s just say the toilet had to be really, really near by. I honestly don’t know, other than by my sheer traveling might, how I caught a bus and a plane to the jungle, but I did it. I should have probably been hooked up to an I-V. I met some great guys from a place called Mashaquipe, which is a cooperative jungle camp organized by indigenous people of the Tuichi River area. When I signed up with them to go to their camp, I told them how sick I was and that I might have to cancel. They told me not ... read more
My cabana and the bathroom
Inside my cabana
The bathroom was very clean

South America » Bolivia » Beni Department » Madidi June 26th 2011

After an unfortunate episode of illness on finishing in the Pampas (thank goodness for the fully stocked pharmacy we brought with us!), diagnosing malaria, cholera and aemobiasis (with no matching symptoms) we got ready for the jungle. We´d decided to go for the pricy jungle trip...then decided it was too expensive for not looking fancy enough (Chalalan Lodge) and went for the off-shoot Baraco del Madidi. Definitely the right decision as it was incredible! In additional to the unfortunate episode, the weather had also changed. Whilst these two incidents together saved us a good few pennies as we refrained from checking into the ´luxury´ Hotel Safari with its river side pool (and I´m sure fabulous cocktails), it did unfortunately mean that we were rather cold for our trip up the river. Jungle = cold was a ... read more

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