Largely untouched and undeveloped, the Guianas – Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana (Guyane) – are home to some of the world’s most endangered animals and the last remaining tracts of pristine rainforest on the continent. The interior is Amazonian with its struggling Amerindian communities and unparalleled wildlife-viewing.
It is the perfect destination for off the beaten track rainforest exploration, river journeys and wildlife expeditions.
Guyana has a wide variety of habitats, including: marine, mangrove, swamp, savannah, white sand forest, brown sand forest, cloud forest, moist lowlands, and dry evergreen scrub forests. Guyana is home to some of the world’s most pristine tropical rainforests, covering most of the interior of the country. With such a variety of ecosystems, Guyana has some of the highest biodiversity in the world.
Guyana’s coast is also an important nesting site for four of the eight species of endangered sea turtles: Hawksbill, Green, Leatherback and Olive Ridley Turtles. Another endangered turtle, the Giant River Turtle, can be found in Guyana’s interior. Guyana is also noted for several Caiman species; several highly poisonous snakes, including the bushmaster; the world’s largest freshwater fish, the Arapaima; and the Golden Poison Dart Frog.
Many species found such as the Macaw, Jaguar and Giant River Otter have regular sightings and are indicative of healthy populations which are testimony to the undisturbed nature of natural habitats within Guyana. Enjoy observing the Tapir, Black Caimans, Tira, Spider Monkeys and fluorescent-plumed birds including the famous Cock-Of-The-Rock and iconic Toucan.
Some of the species you can hope to catch a glimpse of whilst in Guyana include the Giant Anteater, eight different species of monkey and the Capybara, as well as numerous smaller creatures, reptiles and amphibians.
The birdlife is rich and varied; both on the savannah and more along the rivers and ponds, when you will be able to have exciting encounters with the Jabiru stork, the Great Egret, the Agami Heron and the Great Blue Heron, as well as with different species of Kingfishers, the Green Ibis, the Snowy Egrets, the Boatbill heron, the Purple Gallinule and the Wattled Jacana.
The indigenous people
The Macusi, the Wapashani and the Wai Wai are the native tribes of southern Guyana, formerly British Guiana. The Macusi tribes are the ones closest to our home, north of the Rupununi Savanah, near the Brazilian border. The Wapashanis live in both the north and south Rupununi and are specialists in cattle ranching. The Wai Wais are the most primitive and remote tribe in Guyana, living in the southernmost region, the rain forest (jungle) adjoining Surinam.
The Arawak Indians were the first known inhabitants of the French Guiana. The next major waves of people were the Caribs. These people came from the Amazon and travelled to the Antilles. A complex weave of ethnicity and culture forms French Guiana’s population. The Creole population, itself a large mix of ethnicity and culture, comprises the largest ethnic group and has had the greatest influence on the country’s culture. Fewer than one hundred of the native settlers, the Arawaks, currently live in the central part of the country.
The original inhabitants of Suriname are the indigenous people (Amerindians). Thousands of years ago they traversed from North America to South America, and finally settled down in the Guiana Shield-region. The oldest signs of human live in Suriname go back as far as twelve thousand years ago. At this moment Suriname has five Indigenous tribes among its inhabitants. The five tribes are: the Karinha (Caribs) who live mostly in the savanna area; the Trio, the Wayana and the Akurio, all three residing in the interior. Each tribe has maintained its own ancient cultural traditions and speaks its own language. The various tribes communicate thanks to the lingua franco, Sranantongo. The Indigenous and the Maroons both live primarily in the interior, along the major waterways of the rainforest.
Who travels with us to the Guiana’s?
Want to sweat yourself dizzy while exploring one of world’s least visited hidden natural treasures?