Amazonian Remembrances

Many of my childhood memories are linked to the Peruvian Amazon rainforest, because I used to travel to Iquitos during my summer holidays in order to visit my grandparents and aunt:

The sweat on my skin as soon as I got off the plane due to the jungle´s hot air. My watering mouth before local and delicious food such as juane and tacacho. The musical accent of the local people. The wild carnivals on february full not only of water but also of mud. The unpaved streets filled with soft sand which became compact after the rain. The smell of wood from the wooden roof and the old and heavy furniture at my grandparents´house. The hammock where I swayed gently underneath a cloud-studded sky at my aunt´s house. The huertas or orchards at the back of each house. The bite of a huge ant while walking barefoot through my grandparents´orchard. The glazed tiles of the Casa de Fierro or Iron House on the main square.

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The pleasure under a pouring yet refreshing rain. The excitement watching and hearing lightnings, thunders, and thunderbolts. The Quistococha zoo with restless monkeys and macaws among other animals such as otters, peccaries, capybaras, tapirs, and jaguars. The fear of listening to myths and legends of the jungle such as the Tunchi and the Chullachaqui. My walking by the Malecon or promenade along the Amazonas river or around the neighborhood of Belen. Going down or up the river on a pequepeque or small boat to visit a town or lodge. Swimming in an oxbow lagoon. Rubbing onion through all my body before jumping on the lagoon so no snake would bite me.

Years later, I have also visited the cities of Moyobamba (in the department of San Martin), and Pucallpa (in the department of Ucayali). Nonetheless, I would like to come back to the tropics to visit the National Reserve of Pacaya-Samiria in Iquitos as well as Manu and Tambopata in the department of Madre de Dios, east of Cusco.

Relatives, friends, and readers who have also visited the jungle: which memories could you share here?

Read these posts too:

A glimpse of Cusco food

Planning to visit Cusco

Cusco update

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About Peru En RoUte

Natural-born backpack traveller around Peru
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11 Responses to Amazonian Remembrances

  1. Pingback: Museums in Iquitos | Peru En Route

  2. Pingback: Iron House and other mansions in Iquitos | Peru En Route

  3. Tenia la imagen de esa leyenda, aunque realmente habia olvidado el nombre: Runa mula.

  4. MARITZA FONSECA says:

    no olvides del mito amazónico de ¨la runa mula¨ mitad mujer y mitad caballo
    que salia tarde en las noches por que atrasaba a su marido.

  5. At Quistococha zoo, there was a long wall with painted depictions of all the myths and legends. Actually, the tunchi and chullachaqui are just the most popular or, at least, the ones i can recall now, but there are many more.

  6. maritza says:

    Don´t forget the tarantulas (huge spiders) and the pirañas (carnivorous fish in the river).

  7. maritza says:

    Lots of memories from my chilhood. The amazonian myths and legends: the older people used to tell stories, scary and mysterious ones. The¨chullachaqui¨ a strange creature hidden in the forest, the ¨hairy hand¨ coming out from the holes in the Amazonian trees, the famous ¨Tunchi¨ a ghost walking around late at night and many many others. All these stories are part of the Amazonian culture.

  8. Now i remember a few pretty small lizards behind a painting at my grandparents´ house. They were free!

    And i will never forget how the night became white after a lightning. In Lima I have never seen such a thing, so I could not help feeling kind of perplexed.

  9. rocio says:

    The weather is tropical, very hot. But when it rains, it really rains.
    I remember when I was a child I liked to run and to dance under the rain before it really started pouring rain.
    I also enjoyed very much seen the typical animals of the region, parrots, turtles and monkeys in their natural environment. You feel the nature around you.

  10. Indeed, there is this saying: “para entrar al Paraiso, primero debes conocer Iquitos” (to enter Paradise, you must know Iquitos first”.

  11. kristina says:

    Wow! That sounds great. Makes me even more excited about going to Iquitos. Next time I am in Peru, I will definitely go there 😉

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