The rain forest can be in the 80-90's F with 80-90% humidity, hot and wet. The rain forest means rain is possible at any time, be prepared. When cloudy and damp even the forest gets quite cool. In fact sometimes cold fronts roll in from the Antarctic and everyone is putting all the clothes they can. So a sweater or light jacket is advised.
Lugging Your Luggage
Light is Right - If you are traveling much more than just the Amazon you can leave your extra stuff at the Puerto Maldonado main office. An extra bag and luggage lock is good for storing anything you won't need for those few days in the bush. If need be, we can get you a bag cheaply in Peru.
Your everyday cotton clothes are fine, you don't need to go out and buy 'expedition' clothes for these journeys; you can if you want to but it's really not necessary.
Normally we are in comfortable clean lodges for only four nights.
I travel with:
1 light sleeve shirt in case of bugs
1 long sleeve under shirt in case the forest gets chilly or the other shirt gets wet
3 or 4 tee shirts in case of a lot of hot stinky sweat
Lots of socks, underwear as you will
1 pair of loose pants (although the mosquitoes think tight pants are sexier)
~cargo pockets are a way cool way of life~
1pair of light weight pants for nightwear or in case the other pair gets wet
1 pair of light weight shorts
Sweater or light jacket in case of Antartic cold front,
sometimes the forest can get friggin' frigid.
Earplugs in case your neighbors snore.
RAIN GEAR: At least a poncho, rain coat and pants are better.
While where we are going is relatively mosquito free it should come as no surprise if you run into biting bugs in the Amazon; it's a jungle out there.
Perfumed laundry soap, face soaps, shampoo, deodorants and such are bug attractors.
If you are going to use chemical bug repellent 100% DEET is the one, but it is best used on your clothes, not your absorbing skin, amongst other side effects it can cause confusion (go figure if you still can). Citrus-based natural repellents help some.
Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus is the best natural bug deterrent.
But the best overall protection, especially during high bug hours, is simply long sleeves and long pants. Another next step deterrent is a bandana swished about like a tail. The bugs will really back off from that one... for a moment.
Sandals are a comfortable way to hang around the lodge. But if the tiny sand flies show up it is good to have socks on.
No matter what you do some of the buggers are gunna' get through to ya, an after-bite application such as Sting-Eze helps to sooth the situation.
And there are chiggers in some of the grass areas. Tea Tree Oil brings them to a quick end.
No shots are required, although, some are suggested by health boards. Your local health department will have vaccine information, if this is something you choose. You can read up on vaccines for travel if you would like at travmed.com and https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/Travel Sometimes people react to the vaccines. If you are going to get the shots it is better to do so some time before the journey. Even just one shot can cost more than US$200 so allow time to shop around if you do decide to have them.
Many web sites recommend Malaria prophylactics for the Amazon jungle. However many of our informed travelers choose not to use them due to the low incidence of this disease where we travel and they can interfer with the ceremonies.
Information from malardia.com:
Common malaria symptoms: fever, chills, sweats, headaches, nausea and vomiting, body aches, general malaise.
Fever occurring in a traveler one week or more after entering a malaria risk area, and up to 3 months after departure, is (could be) a medical emergency that should be investigated.
Anti-malarial drugs taken for prophylaxis by travelers can delay the appearance of malaria symptoms by weeks or months, long after the traveler has left the malaria-endemic area.
Returned travelers should always remind their health-care providers of any travel in malaria-risk areas during the past 12 months.
Watch for skin sores that do not heal in a normal time span. From the sand flies Leishmaniasis disease is a remote possibility.
Ayahusca Diet - For those that will partaking of ayahuasca check with your group leader if you have any questions.