- – The capital of Beni, also called the "Jewel of the Amazon". It is a very eye-catching town that is slowly but steadily becoming a city.
- – A northern border town with Brazil and reachable by boat.
- – An interesting town with a serious frontier-like feeling, set in the northern Bolivian jungle.
- – A popular base for jungle and pampa trips.
- – Famous for the indigenous Moxos people.
- – Gateway into the region and interchange point.
- – A cute little town deep in Beni lowlands, gateway to other towns and places nearby.
Being in nature, with an organized tour or on your own, you'll meet some communities, see interesting flora and fauna, maybe learn some survival techniques. Maybe you'll want to fly a bit, because the distances (i.e. to reach Riberalta) are quite big. If you can, take a chance and get on a boat trip along the river Mamore.
- Buses from Yolosita to Yucumo: Many in the evening, but also during the day. 8-10 hr (+ 2 hr from La Paz, + 5 hr to Rurrenabaque, + 2-3 hr to San Borja). Bs. 40-50.
- Buses between Trinidad and Santa Cruz: Mostly night buses between 18:00 and 21:00. 10-12 hr. Bs. 50-80 (semi-cama).
By planeFlights from La Paz and others especially to Rurrenabaque and Santa Cruz exist.
By boatSeveral slow and exciting cargo boat option exist to get in from the Brazilian border (Guayaramerín) and the Santa Cruz department (Puerto Villarroel) to Trinidad—see below.
By busThe following are travel times for dry season:
- Yucumo San Borja (vans every 30 min, 2-3 buses a day): Bs. 15/30 by bus/van, 2-3 hr
- San Borja San Ignacio (vans every 60 min, 2-3 buses a day): Bs. 45/90 by bus/van, 4-5 hr
- San Ignacio Trinidad (vans every 30 min, 2-3 buses a day): Bs. 30/60 by bus/van, 3 hr
By planeIf you're going east or north from Rurrenabaque, there's a flight with TAM from Reyes to the cities of San Borja, Trinidad, Riberalta and Guayaramerín (on the border with Brazil).
- Pre-hispanic hills (lomas) north of Trinidad
Reserva del Biosfera del BeniLies within de grassy steppe of the Llanos de Moxos (plains) and a great place to explore the local wildlife. It is one of the first places in Bolivia that has been proteced this way, and now provides home to around 500 different types of animals. Trips can be organised from San Borja, either by simply renting a car and driver, or by asking around for a guide, or organising guided trips with the park rangers itself, including accommodation in local villages.
Boat trip to/from GuayaramerínA very authentic, remote and exciting 3-5 day trip on the Río Mamoré down to the Brazilian border. Besides the mightiness of Mamoré, you will have plenty of time enjoying the rivers flora and fauna. Interact with the local people along the way and enjoy the cuisine on-board or while stopping at one of the many little ports to manage its cargo. Bring a mosquito net and water!
Many cargo boats traverse the river, but might go only during certain days. Depending on the boat, accommodation can range from on-deck places or hammocks to more private cabins. Ask at the tourist information in Trinidad for more information about boats, times and organising, but head directly to the port for sorting out the rest.
Going upstream from the Brazilian border can take 1½ to twice as long as downstream.
Puerto Villarroel (Santa Cruz (department)) Puerto BaradorPretty much the same as the trip between Puerto Barador and Guayaramerín, just the other way. 5-8 days from Puerto Barador to Puerto Villarroel. See above for all the details.
Pilon Lajas Biosphere ReserveA 400,000 ha reserve including a indigenous and multi-ethnic population. Extensive bird watching, but less commercial than the popular Madidi National Park. Mapajo Ecolodge is a community ecolodge, where you can stay.
phone: +591 33568808A privately run reserve. Animals on display: Blue-throated macaw (very likely to see), giant anteaters, maned wolf, several types of tyrants, jaguar, puma and marsh dear. The sustainability of this reserve might be questioned, and it is pretty much the same discussion like the one on wildlife and safaris parks in Africa. Photo-hunting for the macaw for instance might just be the very reason why it is just so rare nowadays.
- Keperi – Tasty piece of cooked meat. It is very tender and it is served with rice and cheese, fried yuca and cold beer. All meat dishes are usually big servings.
- Piranha – The rivers are full of fish and piranha is a delicious treat.
- Snake – As expected in places near a jungle, the Amazon cuisine includes species that are uncommon in other parts of the world. Those who try it ask for second servings.