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Archive for September, 2013

Girl in Santa Maria de Jesus

This photo was taken in Santa Maria de Jesus in Guatemala. This town is about a thirty minute bus ride from Antigua. It’s not really a touristed area. Though there is a cool old church up there. I’d recommend a visit to Santa Maria if you want to get a better feel for what guatemala is actually like. While Antigua is really lovely, it’s a colonial city, and as it is a UNESCO world heritage site, not much has changed there. In Santa Maria, or some of the other small town areas that surround Antigua, you can get more of a feel for the general every day life of the people that live there. This young girl, like most, if not all, of the young girls that live in Santa, is in tradition dress. Huipiles (the top she is wearing) are often made by hand, and are typically worn along with a plainer fabric skirt that is tied together by an embroidered belt.

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Vulture on the River

This picture was taken at the Amazon Ecopark in Brazil. The lodge here offers a few day trips that you can go do, as well as jungle walks led by a guide. In our experience, the ecopark also had a plethora of wildlife in the surrounding areas. Of course with nature there’s no guarantee that you’ll see something, but we had great luck here. We saw a few different varieties of monkeys, including the endangered Pied Tamarin, as well as two sloths, and a ton of birds including this really cool vulture. The Amazon is not the easiest place to spot animals, a lot of areas have such dense forest that it becomes difficult to see things, but the wide variety of bird life that can be spotted here is absolutely astonishing. If you’re up for the challenge of spotting some very cool wildlife this is a great area to visit!

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Amazon Shore line: Adventures in the Flooded Forest

This picture was taken in the Amazon Rainforest somewhere on the Juma River. The Juma is one of the many offshoots of the Amazon and the Rio Negro. Taking boats along any of these river areas gives you an opportunity to see birds, monkeys, and sometimes Caimans or Iguanas; all of which are pretty difficult to see when hiking through the dense forest. Boats are also a pretty good way to stay cool and still cover a large area. It’s a fun, not stressful, way to spend a day!

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Howler Monkeys at the Juma Lodge

This picture was taken at the Juma Amazon Lodge in Amazonas State, Brazil. We stayed in the Amazon for about a week, it was a very interesting trip. The Juma is a cool place to stay, but be advised that none of the place that you’d be staying in the Brazilian Amazon are likely to have air conditioning, there are going to be bugs, it’s going to be hot, and there are going to be limited dining options. That being said, the stuff that we saw was absolutely worth any discomfort. This lodge was nice and they have activities for tourists/ travelers to do. These include jungle hikes, tree climbing, visiting an indigenous village, fishing, canoeing, and more! I liked the lodge a lot, but it’s definitely a little on the secluded side, so bring some books and be prepared for some downtime, it’s unlikely that you’ll be out during the hotter parts of the day.

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