Tambopata to Puerto Maldonado — A Travel Tale

The day I took the Rio Tambopata to Puerto Maldonado did not start off well. In fact, if I moved to Picaflor, I’d have to evict Pico.

He left before I did this morning. With no idea where he was, I was ticked off. On Tuesday, the taxi-boat drove right by and we had to chase it down in Pico’s boat. What if that had happened again? I would’ve been screwed. I was totally alone at Picaflor.

Why did Pico even leave without saying good-bye? So weird!

Senovia in the peki peki on the way down the Tambopata to Puerto Maldonado.

Boat Travel Down the Rio Tambopata to Puerto Maldonado

Well, the Anaconda III did stop for me, thank goodness.

But the kicker came when the woman in charge, Senovia, informed me that Pico had gone to Puerto Maldonado in the Tambopata Lodge’s boat. Why didn’t he bring me along with him? Seriously…

Moreover, today’s voyage was for cargo, not passengers, so we stopped a million times and eventually, we were completely surrounded by bananas, papayas, and bags of corn.

I say “we” because the boat still did pick up some passengers (thank goodness). But there was no room to move at all!

There was good conversation though: religion, politics, social systems, the effects of tourism on the Puerto Maldonado region…

I played with a cute puppy the whole time, too (smiley face).

Taxi Ride From the Tambopata to Puerto Maldonado

Luckily, the way back following the Tambopata to Puerto Maldonado is made easier by getting off the boat at Infierno, a small village at the halfway point. From there, a collectivo goes to town.

Oso (Bear) the puppy was in the same collectivo as I was, but the motion of the car didn’t agree with him too well.

How appropriate that on my first journey to Picaflor, I got shat on by a baby monkey, and that on my last trip to Puerto Maldonado, I got vomited on by a puppy.

It’s probably a good thing that I forgive animals quickly for their misdemeanours (winky face).