South America - Guyanas and more


Colombia route - Part I

Entered:  October 28, 2011
(Cartagena de Indias)

Departed:  November 3, 2011

Duration:  6 days

Average Daily Expenses:  US$50

Average Fuel cost:  US$4-5 per gallon
  (Colombian Pesos:  8,000 for normal, 10,000 for super.  Unless you're in Guajira, where it's half as much)

Carlos in Riohacha - his maniacal laugh, Stop Making Sense, and Sangria discussions with cops while driving
Straws in Coke bottles actually reach out the top
Street signs exist
Motorcycles don't pay tolls, which are expensive for cars

==========          ==========          ==========          ==========          ==========


Venezuela route
(the northern line)

Entered:  November 3, 2011

Departed:  November 11, 2011
(Santa Elena de Uairen)

Duration:  8 days

Average Daily Expenses:  US$40
  NOTE:  We brought in cash in US dollars to exchange on the black market.  We traded money twice, first at 8.25 Venezuelan Bolívares to 1 USD, and then at 8.5:1.  The bank (and ATM) rate is around 4.28 to 1.  Yay, blackmarket!  And the couchsurfers that we stayed with helped out a lot with this.

Average Fuel cost:  US$0.01 per liter
  (that's right.  One US cent per liter!)

Couchsurfing across the country with Filipo, Alejandro, and Ricardo & Suzy
Gas prices - did we mention it was only US$0.01 per liter?
Lowsiding outsiding of Maracaibo
La Gran Sabana

==========          ==========          ==========          ==========          ==========


Brazil - Part I

Entered:  November 11, 2011
(Pacaraima, Roraima)

Departed:  November 13, 2011

Duration:  2 days

Average Daily Expenses:  US$80
  NOTE:  Brazil was expensive, but we think this number is high.  Our hotel in Boa Vista was around US$30-35 per night.  And we did buy a backpack, but it was US$10.  And we did rinse out some oil jugs to use as extra fuel containers, so that was an extra US$15.  So maybe that number ain't so high after all...

Average Fuel cost:  US$5.50-6.50 per gallon
  (10-12 Brazilian Reais per gallon)

Blasting Spanish at Portuguese speakers and making some sense of it
A fantastically huge meal in Pacaraima

==========          ==========          ==========          ==========          ==========


Guyana route

Entered:  November 13, 2011

Departed:  November 20, 2011
(Molsen Creek)

Duration:  7 days

Average Daily Expenses:  US$47
Average Fuel cost:  US$1 per liter
  (210 Guyanese Dollars per liter)

Lethem to Georgetown road including termites, a tapir, a cat, a (dead) monkey, and a sketchy police checkpoint
Good food, entirely different than the Latin American norm

==========          ==========          ==========          ==========          ==========


Suriname route

Entered:  November 20, 2011
(Molsen Creek)

Departed:  June 4, 2012

Duration:  ~6 months

Average Daily Expenses:  US$28
Average Fuel cost:  3.40 SRD per liter (~US$ 1)

Revisiting Drepada, Jill's old Peace Corps site
Getting to know the community of Tutubuka for 6 months
Getting pizza in Paramaribo while living in Tutubuka for 6 months
Seeing the Maipofolo women's cooperative grow
Johnny C's visit

==========          ==========          ==========          ==========          ==========


French Guiana route

Entered:  June 4, 2012
(St Laurent du Maroni)

Departed:  June 8, 2012

Duration:  4 days

Average Daily Expenses:  US$70
 (NOTE:  this was without even paying 1 night of a hotel room!  But we did pick up our fair share of booze for our hosts...)
Average Fuel cost:  1.70 Euros per liter

Hotels are super expensive, one guidebook claimed rooms in Cayenne exceed Paris prices. What we saw in other towns was hammock space for 10-15 Euros, hostel bed around 30.  We were happy to couchsurf.  We still managed to spend plenty of money on food and booze.

Hanging out with all of our couchsurfing hosts - Julien, Bertrand, Nanou, Katia.
That's about it...

==========          ==========          ==========          ==========          ==========


Brazil route - Part II

Entered:  June 8, 2012

Departed:  July 20, 2012

Duration:  42 days

Average Daily Expenses:  US$46
Average Fuel cost:  3 Rs per liter (low of 2.34 Rs in Belém, high of 3.64 Rs in Jacaré)

Family time in Belem - their hospitality was incredible!
Small towns across the Tansamazonica (especially Ruropolis, Placas, and Humaitá)
Lucking out with good weather for BR-319 between Humaitá and Manaus