Our last day together exploring the area around the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve in the upper Amazon started in a great way by visiting a local community named Amazonas. Located near the confluence between the Marañón and the Ucayali rivers, its inhabitants greeted us in a friendly manner and showed us their way of life. Some women demonstrated how they have long used a wooden press to extract the sweet juice out of sugar cane and the way they use natural dyes to give color to the chambira palm fibers they use to elaborate a number of handicrafts. At the same time, our visit provided some entertainment to the many boys and girls, as evident by their smiling and giggling.

Several prominent members of the community talked to us and explained how they have been improving their way of life by learning innovative ways to farm, fish, how to use sustainable agricultural practices, and how to make handicrafts. Particularly encouraging was the participation of several young girls and women who explained how they have been using all the tools provided by the Peruvian NGO Minga Peru, an organization supported by Lindblad Expeditions.

In the evening, we boarded our skiffs for one last exploration, this time at a wonderful place called Piranha creek, located at the easternmost end of the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve and very close to the confluence of the rivers. There we had the chance to again watch numerous birds and colorful butterflies, including snail kites, ladder-tailed nightjars, and black-fronted nunbirds. We also saw a huge group of very active squirrel monkeys.

Afterward, all three skiffs joined in the open waters at the confluence between the Marañón and the Ucayali rivers, the very place where the almighty river receives the name Amazon. Of course, we were ready for the occasion and toasted such an auspicious moment. We celebrated our wonderful experience together exploring, learning about, and admiring one of the truly iconic wild places on earth, the largest tropical rainforest, Amazon!