Moon On Tour 2005 travel blog

Dodgy bridge on way to Coca

So we went through the river instead!!

Journey up Rio Napa to our lodge

At the lodge

Rich and Brett

Ian aka Dougal looking good...(!)

Me and luce (Matt in the background!)

Our guide, Fausto

Having a bit of warpaint applied


Me in de Jungle

Jungl flower - can you tell I studied Botany??

Team Higgins ready for action

Our lodge



Stuck in the mud


Stuck again

Bit of fungus with our groups names on !

On the Saturday night in Banos, a few of us went to a restaurant called Cafe Hood where I had a great chick pea curry. Have been craving a good curry for months now!! After that, we went to a bar called Jacks which was full of gringos and prostitutes. Yes, this is a common theme in South American towns. Wherever there are white men there seem to be lots of ladies with big silicon boobs and not many clothes on. Now some of these "ladies" arent even ladies at all as Anita discovered when she went to the loo and one of them pulled out her willy!!! Hmmmm!!! I wme early that night after vomiting up my dinner for some reason. No, I wasnt drunk!! Felt a lot better in the morning so went shopping in Banos. Got some tshirts which will undoubtedly fall apart like all the others I have bought along the way!! That afternoon Juice and Ian did a bridge jump. I filmed them !! Juice did it twice as my first film was not good enough!! Nutters!! Apparantly it was wicked though. Back to the hostal for a lovely 3 course dinner prepared by Katy, James, Nat, Amanda and Paula. It was Caroles bday so we had cake too. Early night that night due to 5am start!! However, sleep was interrupted by Lucy who discovered a sand fly had buried into her foot and flew out when she scratched it. YUCK!!! Sand fly bites are worse than Mosi bites!

Left early as i said above for the worst journey EVER up to Coca (Franciso de Orellana) There were no roads for about 3 hours so spent most time bouncing around in the back. Not funny!! It was also pissing down with rain as it does it the rainforest type areas!! We eventually arrived in Coca at about 6ish. Coca is an oil exploration town and therefore a bit shady!! From here we were to take a boat down the Napa river (an Amazon tributary) to our lodge for 3 nights. We met Adonis, the tour leader, who took us to dinner where some people ate those big grubs that you see on I'm a Celebrity....!! He wasnt going to be coming with us into the jungle so we had 2 guides called Fausto and Jose. Coca is very humid as you'd expect for a town on the edge of the jungle. Set off next morning at 11 on an uncomfortable 6 hours boat ride into the jungle. Arrived at about 5pm. The lodge was very nice, but us 3 single girls and guys seemed to get the rustic lodges with only a light in the bathroom. Had a lovely dinner and then went to bed b4 the electricity got turned off at 10. Didnt sleep too well that night as kept itching despite mosquito net over bed. There were lots of gaps in the wooden cabin.

Next morning, we split into 2 groups. Our guide was Fausto and we went on a boat trip to spot birds and monkeys. We saw howler, spider and cappuchin monkeys. Then stopped off for a 2 hr walk where he showed us various medicinal plants and insects, including giant congo ants which can apparantly paralyse you for 24 hrs if they bite. Nasty buggers. Back to the lodge for lunch and then we did some piranha fishing in the late afternoon. Caught absolutely NADA!! This didnt bother me too much as I caught loads of the little buggers in the Pantanal when I went a couple of years ago. After dinner that evening, we went Caiman spotting. Again saw none! The river was very high so this was why the Caiman were staying away, hidden in the vegetation away from the river bank. Never mind, seen loads before anyway. Next day it was pissing down just in time for our 4 hour jungle walk. Dispensed with rain poncho early on as this was completely useless in torrential rain. First of all we saw a tarantula which was cool. Had a great walk, saw poison arrow frogs, some people ate ants which tasted of lemon sherbert (not me, I am a scaredy cat!) and we got very, very wet. I got wedged in a foot of mud at one point which was most hilarious. For some! A great morning. After lunch, we did another boat trip to spot wildlife. Found a young anaconda which Fausto brought onto the boat much to Lucys horror as she is a tad terrified of snakes. Survived tho! GOt back for dinner at about 7 after trying to spot more Caimen again. No luck!! That night I got a bit drunk with Brett, Rich and the guides. Not like me at all.

The journey back in rain was lovely. Hmmm. 7 hours on a boat is not nice!! Back in Coca had a nice cold shower (no hot water here it seems!) and collapsed into bed after taking an antihistamine for my millions of mosi bites.

Next morning, we left for Otavalo.

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