Saturday, 27 January 2018

Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago

By the time this blog autoposts Laura and I will (hopefully) be at a lodge at the edge of the Amazon in central Guyana. We had originally decided on postponing our honeymoon until the winter despite getting married in September, since it is a little easier to me to take time off from my job at this time of year. Of course, it is always nice to escape winter for a few weeks as well.

Late in 2016 as we began to look into wedding stuff, we decided that Laura would do most of the wedding planning, while I would take care of organizing the honeymoon. I love putting together trips anyways so I think I got the better deal! To make things a bit more exciting, the plan was for me to organize the trip in secret, with Laura kept in the dark as to the where the destination is. The plan is for her to find out at the airport. :)

I decided on Guyana for a few reasons. First of all, I wanted to take Laura somewhere in the Neotropics since she had never visited, and being surrounded by lush vegetation while seeing parrots, toucans, and snakes was something she has always wanted to do, but the opportunity had never come up for her. Second, Guyana as a country has areas of true wilderness and up to 90% of the country is forested. The lodges we will be visiting are located in remote locations, surrounded by Rupununi savanna or lush tropical forest. Many of the tougher Neotropical birds are relatively easy in Guyana including Harpy Eagle, Sunbittern, Sungrebe, Agami Heron, Orange-breasted Falcon, several guans and curassows, Rufous-winged Ground-Cuckoo and a whole host of cotingas including Guianan Cock-of-the-Rock, Crimson Fruitcrow, Guianan Red Cotinga, and Capuchinbird. The herping can also be incredible in Guyana so Laura and I will be on high alert for snakes, frogs and whatever else we can find. Both South American Bushmaster and Green Anaconda can be found in the areas we will be visiting, though they are certainly not easy to encounter. We have chances at seeing Ocelot, Jaguar, Giant River Otter and Giant Anteater, though the first two species are uncommonly encountered.

Guyana as a country is not visited by a lot of tourists, though in recent years it is starting to become a hotspot for nature tours. That being said, it receives only a fraction of the number of ecotourists than some of the other countries in South America do such as Ecuador, Peru or Brazil. It's somewhere that I have always dreamed of visiting and it will be amazing to be able to share the experience with Laura.

After 12 days in Guyana we will be hopping over to Trinidad and Tobago for four nights. We will have a chance to do some snorkeling, explore some of the beautiful forests, and relax in the sun for a few days before heading home.

Internet will be scarce in Guyana but perhaps I will post a few photos on the blog at some point during our travels. Wish us luck!

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