Going to Guyana


When you think about it, there aren’t many countries left in the world like Guyana. The country still has a fairly vast rainforest teeming with exotic life, and tourism there has remained pretty low due to the political situation and the overall lack of infrastructure. But that may be changing.

I enjoy posting pieces about off-the-beaten-track locales as often as I can. I discovered this piece in a terrific Canadian magazine called Outpost that talks about how quickly Guyana is becoming one of the top eco-tourist destinations around…or at least it is for the more determined and dedicated eco-tourist types (you know, the ones that actually know a hundred species of bird and enjoy gnawing on tree bark for breakfast). The article takes you (via a Toyota land Cruiser) on a visit to the village of Surama, one of the half-dozen or so Amerindian villages in Guyana’s interior that have recently started to cash in on the eco-tourism thing. There the author deals with stealthy snakes, nosy tapirs, monkeys, birds, and a particular golden frog whose nerve toxin is “160,000 times more powerful than cocaine.” (Important safety tip: Don’t lick the golden frogs).

Of course, with the rise in eco-tourism there, it is easy to be concerned about the degradation of the very environment that is being appreciated. Increased tourism will lead to more development, which will lead to forests being felled. So perhaps now is the time to follow the article’s advice and see Guyana for yourself. For more on Guyana’s rainforests and eco-tourism opps, check out this link.