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Discover indian culture in the Colombian Amazon
Discover the lifestyle and culture of the indians of the Colombian Amazon.
A visit to the Colombian Amazon offers an experience a bit different from that of the other countries’ territory in Amazonia. The social, economic and political upheavals of the region have of course affected all countries in this remote part of the continent but none more so than Colombia. It’s taken a while for the area to settle down enough to be an attractive destination for foreign visitors, but now tourism is on the up.
Wildlife spotting here is a given: but a visit now is really rewarding for those looking to discover and understand the dynamics of life on the shores of the Amazon. Leticia, the gateway to Colombia’s Amazonas department, lies on the confluence of the frontiers of Brazil and Peru and is a lively enough port and trade centre with a mixed population but beyond the town’s limits the river banks are peppered with 22 indigenous communities from the Ticuna, Yagua and Cocana tribes, all self-governing and fiercely protective of their traditions. They are beginning to welcome visitors to their homes and makeshift craft shops and dining rooms, but effectively life goes on as before.
Visit Mocagua, where encouraged by artist Diego Samper who owns the lodge next door, the inhabitants have decorated their houses with larger than life portraits of the animals and birds of the region. Macedonia is a community well set up for mass tourism, with native dancing and brimful of stalls selling stuff – probably best avoided but you can call in at other friendly, unspoilt and authentic villages such as Palmeras and Santo Sofia, as well as San Antonio on the Peruvian side of the river, where the main grassy thoroughfare is an abandoned airstrip constructed by long-gone drug lords.
Attractive Puerto Nariño, 75km upriver, is a larger, flower-filled village famed for its eco-credentials, founded by Indians but now with a sizable mestizo population.
The Colombian Amazon
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Real Latin America Experts
Ben Line - Travel Expert
Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.
Evie Oswald - Travel Expert
It's hard to believe that Evie has had time to cram so much in to her life so far. Having lived as a child in the Americas and Europe she found herself immediately attracted to Latin America.
Hannah Donaldson - Travel Expert
Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is a much valued Travel Expert in our Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tours sales team.
Millie Davies - Travel Expert
Having caught the travel bug as a child, Millie has travelled all over Latin America before making her home in Buenos Aires for 3 years.
Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Expert
Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.
Kathryn Rhodes - Travel Expert
Kathryn backpacked across Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before joining us. She has a degree in Philosophy and French and is a keen netball player.