A Short Visit, with History and Adventure!
28.05.2010 - 01.06.2010 27 °C
In May 2010, I was invited to attend a good friend’s wedding in Suriname, and took it as an excuse to also visit and explore a new country, therefore updating my visited countries/cities:
SOUTH AMERICA: Guyana, Suriname
The flight left Trinidad at 10:30pm on Friday with an expected arrival time of 1am Saturday. However, due to fog around the city and the airport at Paramaribo, and a very low percentage of visibility, we circled over the airport for about 2 hrs! The plane then landed in Guyana international airport (one country up) to re-fuel, as we waited for the fog to clear and the visibility to improve. We finally landed and cleared customs in Paramaribo, at about 6am.
Our ride was waiting patiently in the airport for us, (actually camping out there!) as we went back to the groom’s residence to set our things down. We met another friend who took us into the capital city of Paramaribo, while the bridal party was making final arrangements.
Suriname was mainly under Dutch rule before it gained independence, and the historic capital city of Paramaribo can still be seen with the influences of the Dutch. The inner city is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Parts of the city have an 1800’s feel with what we call wooden ‘gingerbread’ houses still lining the main roads. These houses have intricate designs in the woodwork, dating back to the Dutch era.
"Capital City of Paramaribo"
One of the more interesting and pleasing things for me in this capital city was the location of the Mosque Keizerstraat and Neve Shalom Synagogue. They are located adjacent to each other, sharing a wall, also showing an acceptance and understanding for each other.
"The Mosque Keizerstraat and Neve Shalom Synagogue"
We decided to travel to ColaKreek; a creek patronised by visitors and locals alike. The weather however was rainy and overcast and road-works of the red-bauxite road were underway so the conditions were not ideal, but the trip was worth the bumpy ride there.
The Creek gets its name from its orange/brown/red colour, the colour of Coca Cola! The water is very clean, as the colouring is due to the vegetation decay that nurtures the water. It’s a beautiful recreational area, with slightly strong currents (in some areas)!
The day after the wedding, we took the opportunity to explore the city. Driving is similar to home, so navigating was not a problem. Downtown is commercialised with fast food restaurants like McDonalds, and shops like sporting goods and jewellery/gold stores around.
We then got the opportunity, with the friends we were visiting, to drive to Brokopondo, which is located south of Paramaribo, towards the interior of the country. Here, surrounded by a small village, the Suriname River and its tributaries, starts to feed into the Amazon River!! The river was very wide, and the currents were strong, but we were able to swim along the banks and enjoy this experience.
"Suriname River feeding into the Amazon River"
We then drove towards the Brokopondo Reservoir, one of I believe five water dams and hydroelectric facilities and the largest in the country. Although only authorised persons are allowed inside the facility, the views from outside the gates are breathtaking.
"Views from Brokopondo Reservoir"
Our last stop for the trip was dropping the honeymooners to their hotel – The Bergendal: Eco and Cultural River Resort, where we got to enjoy the final views of the sunset over to Suriname River. From the little we were able to see, this Resort is NICE!! And am thinking about visiting on my next trip
"Views from The Bergenda Resort"
We headed back to the city to prepare for the 6am flight back home.
This trip was too short, with so much left to do and see.
I’m looking forward for my next opportunity to visit this undiscovered ecological beauty.