One of the activities at the Napo Cultural Center is visiting the Clay licks and another is the Tree Top Tower. On my trip, we visited two of the clay licks and the Tree Top Tower on the same day.
The day started early with a 5:00 am breakfast. We got on the rowed canoes with the rubber boots that we had been fitted with the night before and they rowed us in the dark back to the welcome center - where we stopped the day before.
It was unsettling to be in the canoe, very low to the water in the dark. It was a very overcast day, so no sunrise.
At the welcome center, we boarded a power canoe and canoed back to the main river to get to the clay lick.
We stayed pretty far back on the river so as to not disturb the birds. They hadn't made their way down onto the soil yet.
There were a lot of birds flying around and resting in the trees. We couldn't see them very well, but we could hear them.
There was another bird hunting the parakeets and the parakeets didn't stay long. As we boated back to the welcome center, we saw a Howler monkey and her baby up in the tree and 2 red titi monkeys.
We then went to the tree top tower. It was a decent walk thru some mud to get to the tower.
Not only am I afraid of spiders, I am super scared of heights...I don't even like to get on a glass elevator or a Ferris wheel.
It was a little scary as the whole tower moved quite a bit. We went to the first landing and it was a really nice view point that was still in the trees and then went up to the upper landing which was above all the trees. It shook a lot more up there and I didn't stay too long before going back to the first landing.
Looking down from the first landing area
The following images were taken from the very top:
Being above the trees offered such a different perspective. We were, unfortunately, not rewarded with lots of birds as we hoped but still an experience.
We had a little snack up in the tower and as we walked back out we stopped to take a few images.
The tree trunk below was at the bottom of the stairs and a 6' tall person is a midget standing inside .
We than went to the other clay lick. This one was very different from the first. They had a covered seated stadium area in front of the clay lick. I didn't take any pictures of it or the seats. We got there early so we were the first group. We had to sit and be quiet to not scare the birds and since we were photographers, we wanted a clear view.
The birds have a lot of natural predators so they are timid to come down to the clay lick to get their needed minerals.
Again, we could hear the birds and see a few. So we sat quietly waiting for nature to do its thing.
Another group came in and sat behind us. They stayed a short while and then left.
After about 2 hours of waiting in silence, the parakeet show happened.
They stayed there for about 10-12 minutes with many of the parakeets leaving and more joining. It was fascinating to watch them and to hear them!
We walked back to the cultural center for lunch and then a slow canoe ride to the lodge. A fabulous day in the amazon.