Pucallpa - Finally, The Amazon!
You’re finally here! The Amazon rainforest! Perhaps it’s not quite what you expected. In fact, it looks an awful lot like a giant city filled to the brim with mototaxis. That’s right, all you backpackers out there: Pucallpa is just a big city in the jungle, and this isn’t what you came here for, is it?
Before you kick the dirt from your feet and board that boat to go downriver to the popular tourist destination of Iquitos, give Pucallpa a chance to enchant your eye for authenticity. Pucallpa offers something that Iquitos cannot: very few foreigners!
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Of course, your goal should never be to avoid other tourists, but when you’re obliged to pass through a large city in which it will appear that you will be one of the only backpackers, it’s a great chance to get closer to the local culture.
You’ll arrive to Pucallpa after 6 hours of driving from Tingo Maria. Perhaps you will have chosen to stop at the Velo de la Novia waterfall complex. Those falls sit at the end of viagra canada the winding river road, just as you come out of the foothills.
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The foothills are left behind, and a few hours after driving the vast jungle plain you arrive to the city of Pucallpa, a bustling town that has very few cars and very many motorized rickshaws. The buzzing is like a hive.
You’ll check into a hotel (there are no backpacker hostels here), and then hit the streets for some unique sightseeing. You could opt to visit the nearby lagoon, perhaps taking a boat tour of the place. It should cost about 3 sols to get there on a motortaxi. Just ask for the lagoon.
However, the most impressive part of Pucallpa, besides the cheap eats like juane (rice and beef cooked in banana leaf) and tacacho (mashed plantain, chorizo and butter served with various meats), is the Rio Ucayali.
Those cheap eats you’ll find at the riverfront, and it’s something impressive. The river seems to stretch for miles across to the other side. Eventually, this river connects to the Amazon River, and on to the Atlantic Ocean. It’s a giant body of water and silt moving like one organism. The market and many outdoor food stands are found along the river.
It’s hot, wet and bright. Take sunglasses, and take sun screen as well. Finally, make sure that before you board your hammock boat to Iquitos, that you try some of the ice cream made from local fruits—you’re going to need it.