October 18th, after numerous phone calls to the airline and hours waiting at the airport we made it! AmasZonas flight 90 eventually took off and what is more important touched down on the dusty / grassy runway in Rurrenabaque, with no less than a 25 hour delay …
On our second flight the weather was just fine and we were able to watch the Cordillera Real and its many snow-capped mountains of more than 6.000 meters high, while our plane was climbing. Then the scenery abruptly changed with the Yungas highlands down below and finally the Amazon Basin, all this within 40 minutes. Even though it was not a charter flight, literally everyone cheered the pilots for finally getting us there.
Apart from the delays, this was an extreme trip: within 40 minutes we moved from a chilly 4.050 meters on the Andean Altiplano to the heat and humidity of the Amazon Basin at 280 meters in Rurrenabaque.
This is a very laid-back sleepy village at the edge of the Amazon. Locals move on scooters and nobody harasses you trying to sell you God knows what. Many tourists and locals use hammocks to escape the incredible afternoon heat, while pool addicts like us dish out the 20 Bolivanos or 2 Euros to use the swimming pool at the Hotel Ambaibo.
We checked in at the Hotel de los Tucanes de Rurre, which was actually the first place where the small bus from the airport stopped “downtown”: a simple but nice place with lots of hammocks in the yard and very cheap. Unfortunately some Israelis were in party mood and stayed in the hammocks most of night drinking. Since every room here has just mosquito nets and no windows, everybody was forced to listen in. We decided to stay at another place when we come back from the trip to the Rain Forest.
The first evening, we decided to meet several of our fellow travellers to celebrate our arriving in Rurrenabaque and “of course” headed toward THE traveller’s bar, the Mosquito Jungle Bar. That place is a gold mine: literally every tourist shows up there for a drink, there must have been 100 people there that night, downing cocktails for 28 Bolivianos (2.8 Euros) before heading out to the Pampa or Rainforest.