Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Travels in Ecuador PART 1 - SAN JUAN BOSCO, ECUADOR!!

Our 2015 Travels in Ecuador

  Our adventure in 
  San Juan Bosco, Ecuador
Near the town of San Juan Bosco is this spectacular scenic area where we gazed upon Pan De Azucar, which Means "Sweet Bread."   It has an elevation of 9,700 feet. 

It's time!! To travel and explore our beautiful Ecuador.  Now that we're settled into daily life in Cuenca, and we should be after over two years here, we want to make 2015 our year of exploring this breathtaking country.  Because our cost-of-living is so affordable, and because we are retired and free, we have the liberty to take off and GO!  So, I wanted to share our three amazing trips we have experienced in the past two months.  

Our friends, Dave and Libia invited us to come to their little town of San Juan Bosco and hang out with them for a few days.  So, off we went with our backpacks, walking sticks, and dressed for the Amazon.  Libia was in Cuenca visiting family.  So the day she was ready to leave and head home to her finca in the jungle, we tagged along, took a bus together, and headed for our three day experience in the lush green Amazon Jungle of Ecuador.  

A view of San Juan Bosco from the Bus!
Part of our days were spent exploring the town of San Juan Bosco, an historic town located in the Amazon Basin at an elevation of approximately 3,400 feet (1,050 meters).  It is a county within the province of Morona Santiago and extends from the Eastern side of the Andes mountains to the jungle border with Peru. This peaceful small quaint town has a population size of approximately 1,500 and was founded only 50 years ago. 
San Juan Bosco's Main Street

        Jungle Dave does ecological tours of the Oriente.  
You can visit his website at 
and read all about it.

We did lots of hiking with Dave and Libia.  Bo and Dave taking a break and enjoying a moment in the Mountains!!

On one of our "Tour" walks near San Juan Bosco, we made way for these harvesters of branches..... 
......heading down the mountain. 

Ahhhhh, time away from the city was spent basking in the silence of the jungle and amongst the beauty of nature.

It reminds me of lush green Oregon. 
My favorite place to relax is by a rushing river......

.....and for me, there's no other place in the world to sit and escape the bustling city!

 It had been raining for days, and the ground was very muddy.  So, we decided to not hike into Jungle Dave's farm during this visit.  One of our mornings there, Dave's farm workers hiked out to load up with more provisions.  Libia helps him tie down the load for his journey back.

One of the worker's sons takes a mountain break.

Okay, their mule is loaded and ready to go!

The journey back begins..... 
For Dave, Libia, and their helpers, this hike is a daily event.  Sometimes Dave hikes in and out two or three times a day.  For us, it would have been a great challenge and hours of forging our way in.  They are truly human mountain goats!!!
Yes, that little white speck is Jungle Dave's finca - definitely a hike to be in shape for, even if you have a mule!

 We visited one of Libia's friend's farm.  Their daughter
was captured by my camera and I was captured by her adorable face!

 We enjoyed roaming around their farm......

....and playing with the pups.

 One afternoon, Dave and Libia bought a mule she has had her eye on.  They negotiated their price....

She told me the mule was neglected - but the next time we visited, her mule would be shiny and healthy.  They LOVE their animals!

We also visited Libia's cousin's finca - 
75 spectacular acres of lush green jungle land!  

Oliver - Fishing for fresh Tilapia
Libia is an amazing cook - and guess what we had for dinner that night?
Whatcha Lookin' At????
Libia and Bo - Posing by the Pig Pen
(Is that Bo in a hat???)
We enjoyed the hidden waterfall and calm river on Olicho's property
One of the days, Libia's GORGEOUS family drove in from Cuenca to visit their mom.  I loved meeting them and taking some family portraits for her of her two handsome sons, beautiful daughter, and gorgeous grandson.

One of my prize photos of Libia and her precious grandson.


Some of you know the story of Bo's childhood past "Cowboy Hat- Hey Tex!" trauma.  To get Bo in a hat - well!!  So, for me, capturing this moment is priceless.  We both had such A HAPPY TIME during our visit with Jungle Dave and Libia.  

Thank you, Dave and Libia, for such a relaxing and enjoyable few days with you.  You made it grand for us - and we can't wait to come back and see you again!

If you haven't visited Ecuador's Amazon yet, you must.  If you haven't tasted Jungle Dave's Organic Meat yet, you must!  He does home delivery in Cuenca!  If you want to order meat or take a tour of his Finca in the Jungle and see the sweet town of San Juan Bosco, you can contact Dave at davegouch@yahoo.com 

Stay tuned for