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So we went to the Ecuadorian jungle near Tena.  It’s called the Oriente (East) and it represents the beginnings of the Amazon basin.  Several large rivers ultimately converge into the Amazon itself, though that occurs much further downstream (Southeast) in Brazil.  This area of Ecuador is warmer, more humid and, of course, rainforesty.  However, it’s not like going into the “heart of darkness” – malaria shots are not required and there are several towns, resorts and other more tourist oriented fare nearby.  So it’s definitely the lite version of the jungle, but very fun nonetheless.

We stayed the Casa del Suizo which is along the Napo River.  It’s a lovely resort providing daily jungle tours, raft rides on the river and organized visits to an animal rescue preserve.  When you arrive at resort, you come by canoe.  This is a very nice experience and totally unnecessary since there’s a road leading up to the back door of the thing.  But where’s the charm in that?  Arriving by canoe is definitely the way to go and actually much more efficient when going out to tour the local environs.  Although the nearby towns are connected to the larger roadway infrastructure of the haunts, the history of this area is based on the river.  As a result, the most efficient way to get around is via canoe on the river itself.

Below are a few pictures and a short video at the bottom of the post.  We went with our friends the Davis’ who are also here in Ecuador for a year and visiting from Michigan.  You’ll see them in the photos here and there.  We all had a great time together.

Arriving by Canoe

The Pool at Casa del Suizo

Ethan Dresses Up For A Special Event - Jungle Style

On The Big Rope Swing

Jon Gives it a Try

A Nice View During the Hike

A Beautiful Moth Resting on our Guide's Machete

This Tree's Seed Pods are used for Face Painting

See What I Mean?

Drinking the Local Fermented Drink, "Chichi"

Sunset on the Napo River

Monkeying Around at the Animal Rescue

This Little Guy, Pigmy Spider Monkey, was the Size of your Hand

Cutest....Ocelot Cub....Ever!

Video - Click Play Twice