Friday, December 9, 2011

THE PACAYA SAMIRIA NATIONAL RESERVE


Herons flying on a lagoon in the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve
The Pacaya Samiria National Reserve (PSNR), located close to Iquitos (Peru), is the largest government protected area within the floodable Amazon basin in South America with 2'080,000 ha (20,800 sq km or 5139.7 acres) is twice the area of the Yellowstone National Park (USA).

Herons colony
RAMSAR site since 1986, it is located among the rivers Marañón, Ucayali and Amazon housing a huge biodiversity: 527 bird species, 102 mammal species, 69 species of reptiles, 58 species of amphibians, 269 fish species, and 1024 species of plants. Some of these species are endangered as the charapa turtle (Podocnemis expansa), taricaya turtle (Podocnemis unifilis), the spider monkey (Ateles sp.), the giant river otter (Pteronura brasiliensis), the jaguar (Panthera onca), the Amazon manatee (Trichechus inunguis), black caimans (Melanosuchus niger), the red macaw (Ara macao; A. ararauna), herons, hummingbirds, the harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja), and more.
Jungle trek

The altitude of the Reserve is between 80 to 206 msnm (263 to 675 feet above sea level) and have many lagoons and streams of calm water that reflects the landscapes and sky as a mirror. Due its landscapes and biodiversity, the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve is an Amazon hotspot for ecotourism, adventure travel and birdwatching.

There are many tour companies -cruises, lodges, travel agencies and local guides of the villages living in the protected area (these people were trainned by the Peruvian government and NGOs)- that organizes jungle trips to the reserve, but always is better contact only with registered ones.

Sunset on the Amazon rainforest
The Pacaya Samiria National Reserve is a superb place to see wildlife. Usually is necessary to take a minimun of three days, two nights or more to travel to the Pacaya Samiria and El Dorado lagoon ("cocha El Dorado" as the locals say) is one of the most interesting places within it, because hosts a plenty of birds, alligators, river turtles, paiches (Arapaima gigas, the largest fresh water fish in the world), monkeys, and beautiful landscapes of primary jungle. To visit El Dorado it is necessary to take at least a 6-day expedition.

To obtain official information on activities in Iquitos and Peru, tour companies and their reputation, Amazon rainforest tours, and local guides of the villages living in the Pacaya Samiria area, contact iPerú, the nationwide tourism office (run by PromPeru, the Peruvian tourism board) to iperuiquitos@promperu.gob.pe, www.peru.travel or their 24-hour line (+51 1) 574-8000.

More information: info@amazonexplorer.com


Monday, November 7, 2011

3-DAY BASIC JUNGLE SURVIVAL COURSE ON NOVEMBER 2011


On November 2011, Amazon Explorer will start a 3-day Basic Jungle Survival Training Course. From 08 to 10 November, take advantage of your time, travel to the Amazon in South America, and learn how to survive in the wild.

Amazon Explorer is a licensed company
registered by the Peruvian tourism authorities.
The instructional training has the aim of providing guidelines and techniques that will be useful as a standard for the staff of companies, or people that have a special interest to learn skills and activities to obtain basic jungle survival training. This training course contains aspects of jungle survival, giving the most practical ways of adaption to the environment, and the use of natural resources.

The jungle training course is divided into two phases: Theory is given in a conference room in Iquitos (river Amazon, Peru) and the practical part is taught 60 km (37 mi) from the city.

A day after the training course, on Nov11, 2011, the Amazon would be elected as one of the Seven Wonders of Nature. Please, do not forget vote for the Amazon in www.n7w.com.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

The Shuar (Jibaro) People

A Shuar with his traditional crown of feathers
and face painting
Known as a fierce tribe and headhunters, noted for their custom to reduce human heads into an orange size, the Shuar people are formed by four groups: Ashuar, Aguaruna, Huambisa and the Shuar (all these tribes belong to the Jivaroan people, but popularly are known as Jivaros). Their lands extends along the Amazon, northern Peru and southern Ecuador.

Succesfully resistered the incursions of the Inca Empire and later the Spanish conquistadores. Before the Spanish conquest, the Inca Huayna Cápac tried to conquer the Shuar people. Later, in 1549, year in which for the first time arrived a Spanish expedition in the shelters of their isolated jungle. The leader of the expedition, who was really furious, sent a letter to the Spanish King telling him: “I inform my Majesty that their town is the most insolent that I have seen during all the time that I have been travelling in the Indies and fighting to conquer it”. This brave man, who was Hernando de Benavente, arrived there with the idea of establishing a camp, was obligated by the hostile Jibaros to lease their geographic areas.

In his book, which was title The Jívaro: People of the Sacred Waterfalls, edited in 1972, the anthropologist Michael J. Harner, set the place of this tribe in the history saying: “We only know an Indian tribe of American representatives that could fight against the Spanish Empire and failed all the intention of the conquerors to dominate them: the Jibaro people.”

Although, many Spanish armies dominated the tribe during half century, the Jibaro people rose in 1599 in rebellion. The Spanish chronicles related that during that year, aroun 20000 Jibaro leaded by Kirrúba (Quiruba) due the Governor of Macas, representative of the Spanish colony, charged a huge tribute to the indigenous people, the Jíbaro people rose in rebellion and kill a thousand of white citizens in only one day. First, they captured to the Governor in a city named Logroño de los Caballeros, poured melted gold in his throat up to his bowels exploded inside his body and destroyed the village. Some nights later, in 25 leagues of distance, they killed most of the men in the village of Sevilla de Oro and Valladolid, as well as Canelos, Zamora and other colonial villages in the area.

Nowadays, the Shuar people are located in the area of the rivers Tigre, Morona and Pastaza in Peru, and in south Ecuador. An expedition to their lands usually requires sense of adventure and 15 days available.

Further information:
Wikipedia: Shuar (Español).
Wikipedia: Shuar (English).

More information: info@amazonexplorer.com

Sunday, June 26, 2011

RESERVA NACIONAL PACAYA SAMIRIA: LA SELVA DE LOS ESPEJOS



Las aguas tranquilas reflejan el entorno de la selva
como espejos naturales
De forma triangular, la Reserva Nacional Pacaya Samiria tiene como límite norte y sur a los ríos Marañón y Ucayali respectivamente, hasta su confluencia a unos 30 km de Nauta, lugar donde inicia el río Amazonas por nombre, al noreste del Perú.

Con un área equivalente al doble del Parque Nacional Yellowstone (EE.UU.), o la mitad del territorio de Costa Rica, Holanda o Dinamarca. La Reserva Nacional Pacaya Samiria es el área protegida más extensa de toda la Amazonía inundable y la cuarta de toda América del Sur, siendo considerada sitio RAMSAR desde 1986. Su territorio de 2'080,000 ha (20,800 km2 o 5139.7 acres) es el hogar de una inmensa variedad de especies de flora y fauna, muchas de ellas en peligro de extinción como la nutria gigante de río, el manatí amazónico, los delfines rosados y grises, caimanes, las tortugas fluviales gigantes charapas y taricayas, así como de variedad de especies de reptiles, mamíferos como el oso perezoso, el ronsoco (capibara), el otorongo (jaguar) primates y aves como el exótico shansho (hoatzín), garzas, tucanes y tucanetas, colibríes (picaflores), rapaces como el águila harpía y halcones, entre otros.
Flor de la Victoria amazónica o Victoria regia,
el nenúfar más grande del mundo
Sus ríos, lagos, lagunas y pantanos son el hogar de gran variedad de peces fluviales, como el paiche, el gigante amazónico de más de 250 cm y las temidas pirañas, así como la conocida anaconda. Asimismo, estas aguas, oscuras y tranquilas, reflejan casi a la perfección el cielo y los paisajes selváticos, por lo que la reserva también es conocida como “La Selva de los Espejos”.

Debido a que el Pacaya Samiria se encuentra en la Amazonía, posee un clima ecuatorial (caluroso y muy húmedo), con dos estaciones: seca (entre mayo y octubre, cuando los ríos se secan) y la lluviosa (entre noviembre y abril, cuando los ríos tienen mayor nivel y caudal), siendo es posible visitarla durante todo el año.

Aproximadamente a medio año, las tortugas fluviales desovan en playas arenosas, eclosionando alrededor de noviembre.
Turistas en la Reserva Nacional Pacaya Samiria.
Los grupos no suelen exceder las 8 personas

La Reserva Nacional Pacaya Samiria, por su gran biodiversidad y belleza escénica, es un lugar ideal para actividades de ecoturismo, observación de aves y de vida silvestre, así como estudios científicos. El tiempo mínimo de visita recomendable es de 3 días y 2 noches, siendo ideal tomar de 5 a más días, pues con este tiempo es posible llegar a la laguna El Dorado (o cocha El Dorado como es conocida por los lugareños), que es la zona del Yanayacu-Pucate con mayor diversidad de fauna silvestre (aves, caimanes, mamíferos y el paiche, uno de los peces de agua dulce más grande del mundo), rodeado de selva primaria.

La RNPS puede ser visitada por todo tipo de viajeros, desde parejas, familias o estudiantes hasta aventureros.

More information: info@amazonexplorer.com
Hotel in Iquitos   : www.emperadorterraza.com

ACTIVITIES
Jungle survival training course

Friday, May 6, 2011

LOS SHUAR O JÍBAROS

Conocidos como una aguerrida tribu del Amazonas y notables por su tradición de reducir las cabezas humanas al tamaño de una naranja, los llamados pueblos Jívaros se componen de 4 sub grupos: Ashuar, Aguaruna, Huambisa y los Shuar.

Su territorio se extiende por el norte del Perú y sur del Ecuador, en la selva del Amazonas.

Resistieron exitosamente las incursiones de los Incas y posteriormente a los conquistadores españoles. Antes de la conquista española, el Emperador Huayna Cápac trató, sin éxito, de conquistar a los Shuar.

Posteriormente, en 1549, año en que penetró por primera vez una expedición española en las guaridas de su aislada selva, muy indignado, el líder de la expedición, el capitán Hernando de Benavente, envió una carta al Rey de España: «Afirmo ante su alteza», escribió Benavente, «que este pueblo es el más insolente que he visto en todo el tiempo que llevo viajando por las indias y luchando para su conquista», Benavente, que llego allí con la idea de establecer un campamento, fue obligado por los Jívaros a batirse en retirada. Los españoles los nombraron jívaros como sinónimo de salvajes.

En su libro The Jívaro: People of the Sacred Waterfalls, editado en 1972, el antropólogo Michael J. Harner fijó el lugar de esta tribu en la historia: «tan solo se conoce una tribu de indios americanos que haya conseguido levantarse contra el imperio de España y que haya abordado todos los intentos consiguientes de los españoles por reconquistarles: Los Jívaros».

Aunque sucesivos españoles dominaron la tribu durante medio siglo, los Jívaros se sublevaron en 1599. Las crónicas españolas relatan que durante dicho año unos 20000 Jívaros, comandados por Kirrúba (Quiruba), a raíz de que el Gobernador de Macas, el representante colonial español de la zona, impuso un enorme tributo a los indígenas, se sublevaron y dieron muerte a miles de blancos. Primero capturaron al Gobernador, afincado en la ciudad de Logroño de los Caballeros, vertieron oro fundido en su garganta «hasta que las tripas le estallaron dentro del cuerpo» y luego destruyeron totalmente el pueblo. Unas pocas noches más tarde y a unas veinticinco leguas de distancia destruyeron Sevilla de Oro y Valladolid, así como Canelos, Zamora y otros pueblos coloniales. En aquellas incursiones se llevaron a muchas mujeres blancas, por lo que todavía en nuestros días se puede distinguir rasgos de mezcla blanca en los rostros de algunos Jívaros.

Actualmente, los pueblos Shuar se localizan en el Perú en el área de los ríos Tigre, Morona y Pastaza, frontera con el Ecuador.

AMAZON EXPLORER cuenta con expediciones hasta sus territorios, lejanos de las grandes ciudades occidentales. Mayor información:

info@amazonexplorer.com
www.facebook.com/AMAZONEXPLORER
www.amazonexplorer.com

Enlaces de interés:

More information: info@amazonexplorer.com

Monday, April 18, 2011

AMAZON EXPLORER: 2011 EXPEDITIONS


To provide a better experience for the adventure traveler or those looking for something harder, AMAZON EXPLORER has prepared a schedule of expeditions to remote indigenous tribes in the jungle (Matsés / Mayoruna and Shuar / Jibaro), and jungle survival trainings during 2011.

Start in late June, with a 3-day short course on jungle survival, where military and indigenous techniques to locate, find food, protect and survive in this extreme ecosystem will be learned. By mid-July we have prepared a 15-day expedition to Matsés Indian tribe, river Yaquerana, on the border between Peru and Brazil (South America). There we will live together with this community, observing their customs and listening to their stories. In August there is a 5-day jungle survival training. In September, a 15-day expedition to the Matsés. By October a new jungle survival training of 3 days.

Closing 2011, we have two 20-day expeditions: in November to the Shuar indigenous people. Also known as the Jibaro people their were greatly feared, and were world famous for their Tsantsa, the shrunken heads, who speak Spanish chronicles of the conquest. In December we have a 20-day expedition to the Matsés people.

Remember, AMAZON EXPLORER also organizes conventional expeditions for families, couples and students who wish to learn more about the Amazon and the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve (the largest in the floodable Amazon basin), with the experience and quality that have given us years of traveling in the depths of the Amazon.

Further information on our conventional and adventure expeditions, please contact us to: info@amazonexplorer.com, and our website www.amazonexplorer.com.

Follow us on our FACEBOOK official Fan page and our Fotolog, where you will find information and pictures of our activities.