Suriname as a country and the capital Paramaribo are by far the best places we have been to our this tour, which is why we only spent 2 days there (one day I’ll write a proper post about the soap opera, comedy of errors of this tour , but right now I’m only focusing on the good things) I really wish I had more time to spend in Suriname , I could spend a week here just going on all the various tours especially those to the jungle as I still don’t feel I’ve really seen the Amazon as one needs to fly into it and stay for a couple of days not just drive through the populated areas of it 😦
The first thing I did notice when entering Suriname is that I could not decide if I felt like I was in Africa or China. Every shop I saw and all the wood mills were Chinese. I have no problem with this except for the fact that I’ve been told that the Chinese companies have no concerns about the environment and are just raping the jungle. They also use mercury in their mines which is just washed straight into the rivers. One must blame the governments of French Guiana, Suriname and especially Guyana (which has the worst ecological problems) since the governments are doing nothing to ensure proper ecological practices.
I did think that Suriname as a country and especially Paramaribo have a nicer feel to them than almost any other places we’d travelled. I cannot explain it but the place is cleaner, feels safer, the people are friendlier (they are friendly everywhere but even more so here) I just liked it. Although a lot of the buildings are in need of TLC, there seems to be a lot of growth and some stunning old colonial style buildings many of which have been restored. Since we arrived at lunchtime we had the afternoon to enjoy exploring the city and the pool at the hotel. Every time we arrived at a hotel we asked if there was a pool since to us this was like liquid gold after travelling in this unbearable heat.
The following day we went to see the dolphins and it was great. They are like bottlenose dolphins but a bit smaller. There are a lot of them and they fish in an area where a the large Suriname river meets the ocean. So we boarded a small boat at 9 am and went to search for them. They are not tame and not attracted to the boats as it is illegal to feed them or disturb them at all since they are a protected. You only get to glimpse them for seconds as they peak out the water perhaps to get a glimpse of these strange creatures in boats, you see just their dorsal fins more than the dolphins themselves but I enjoyed it and thought it was worth the trip.
We then stopped at a small sandy island for a walk and to meet some of the fisherman. I made a big mistake and left my bag on the boat. I asked the guide a young Dutch lady if it was ok and she said sure the boat captain remains on board and will keep and will keep an eye on it, yup that he did he also helped himself to Euro20 out my wallet. Totally my stupid mistake so I didn’t say anything when I discovered this after the trip while paying for lunch. Not the first or last mistake in my life but hopefully I won’t make the same one twice dumb just dumb
Anyway the walk on the beach was interesting, some of the guys spoke to the fishermen who live in these tiny shacks but were extremely friendly and generous and wanted to give them some fresh fish, it was impossible to take them with but such a lovely gesture. There were also loads of birds on the island most of which you just heard and they sounded like Budgerigar. The one sad thing is the amount of litter, I managed to avoid the litter in my photos but it was their and quite disgusting. The other interesting thing was that there seemed to be hundreds of round black rocks all over the beach but on closer inspection they were soft and squishy and I realised they were balls of compacted oil of some sort, disgusting but at least it wasn’t like an oil spill just these balls so the fish and birds could avoid them but it was rather weird.