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For many thousands of years the indigenous people of South America have been living together with the jungle: learning its ways, working its cycles and taking its medicines — and passing on their experience through stories, rituals and shamanic practice.
The heart of this quest is to encounter the true spirit of the Amazon, by navigating the rivers and staying with the people that live along its banks. These communities are friendly and welcoming to travellers, offering a place to stay, working as local guides and sharing their stories and experience of the jungle — something that is deeply engrained in their culture and not easily uncovered on a pre-packed gringo tour...
Adventure awaits :D
I met up with this local guy who told me it would take 2 weeks to build a 5x4m raft from balsa wood. It involves going into the forest and cutting down the trees, debarking the trunks and leaving them in the sun to dry out. Then, with a drill and some heave duty fasteners, bolt all the logs together.... He said it took him three weeks on the river to paddle to Iquitos.
So yeah it's totally possible.... Who's coming with me?
Well guys I've made it to the Amazon...well atleast the edge of it. Right now I'm hanging out in a little town called Mishualli, in the east of Ecuador, on the Napo river. "The gateway to the Amazon", as some are calling, sounds like a good place to start gathering more information about raft building, river navigation and jungle adventures :D
Will let ya know how it goes :)