The Iwokrama Rainforest Canopy Walkway

The Iwokrama Rainforest Canopy Walkway

#Guyana is filled with dense rainforest, and it has become a well known hotspot for bird-watching. We were able to stay #active when we were there, mainly by hiking and enjoying the #nature reserves. The jungle was hot and steamy, but we still enjoyed bonding with the animals living in the rainforest.


After seeing a parade of beautiful exotic birds on the drive into the Iwokrama Rainforest and discovering that Guyana is an elite birding destination, I was expecting more of the same on the Canopy Walkway. We arrived at the Atta Rainforest Lodge, which is home to the trails where the Canopy Walkway is located.

My guide Gabe walking on the Canopy Walkway in the Iwokrama Rainforest
My guide Gabe walking on the Canopy Walkway in the Iwokrama Rainforest

I was greeted by Ted the baby sloth and a tame black currosow who roamed the grass around the lodge. 

I was greeted by Ted the baby sloth

A couple of cups of coffee and after getting a tour of the lodge, it was time to hit the jungle and see more birds and with hope, monkeys and mammals. Although rarely seen, the Iwokrama Rainforest is home to a healthy jaguar population.

Traveling Ted meets Ted the baby sloth
Traveling Ted meets Ted the baby sloth
Ted the baby sloth and I
Ted the baby sloth and I
Not as cute as Ted (the sloth and me), but kind of cool was the resident tame black currosow
Not as cute as Ted (the sloth and me), but kind of cool was the resident tame black currosow

Unfortunately, it was not to be as far as the wildlife was concerned. It was past 7 a.m. when we got started as we had stopped many times coming into the jungle to see and take pictures of macaws, toucans, and other birds along the Georgetown-Lethem Road on the way from Rock View Lodge to the rainforest.

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Walkway in Guyana

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 Iwokrama Canopy Walkway, Potaro-Siparuni, Guyana
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Once the jungle heats up, the birds and mammals lay low. It does not mean you will not see anything, but the pickings get slim during the middle of the day. We did see two green-winged macaws on a dead tree before hitting the Canopy, but that was just about it.

One of the five platforms in the distance with a walkway in between
One of the five platforms in the distance with a walkway in between
Another view of the Canopy Walkway
Another view of the Canopy Walkway
Canopy Walkway view of the surrounding Iwokrama Rainforest
Canopy Walkway view of the surrounding Iwokrama Rainforest
Far away hills zoomed in from atop the Canopy Walkway
Far away hills zoomed in from atop the Canopy Walkway

We could see the tree covered hills in the distance as well as the trees and vegetation directly below us. It was a different perspective from what one usually sees from the ground. I can imagine it would normally be a great place to spot wildlife a little earlier in the morning.

Just don’t look down if you are squeamish
Just don’t look down if you are squeamish
The beautiful lush vegetation of the Iwokrama Rainforest as experienced from atop the Canopy Walkway
The beautiful lush vegetation of the Iwokrama Rainforest as experienced from atop the Canopy Walkway

This is not to say we did not see anything. We saw a few birds on top of the canopy including purple-throated fruitcrow and down in the jungle we saw some lizards and one interesting camouflaged spider. The spider was the same color as the tree. When we purposely spooked it, it went directly to another spot on the tree that was the same shade as the spider. It is interesting how they know where to sit on the tree in order to hide themselves.

Purple throated-fruitcrow from the Canopy Walkway
Purple throated-fruitcrow from the Canopy Walkway
Camouflaged spider
Camouflaged spider

While walking through the jungle I got to hear stories from my guide Gabe who routinely takes people through this rainforest. He has seen tarantulas, fer-de-lances, and sometimes even jaguars in the past.

Too soon it was back to the car and back to Rock View Lodge. One regret from this trip is I did not make arrangements to stay at Atta Lodge. 

If I stayed here I could have awoken at first light and hit the canopy when it would certainly be alive with birds and monkeys. 

I could have awoken at first light and hit the canopy when it would certainly be alive with birds and monkeys

I could have then relaxed away the day at Atta in a hammock hanging out with Ted the sloth and waited till evening and hit the jungle again.

Happy and high atop the Canopy Walkway in the Iwokrama Rainforest
Happy and high atop the Canopy Walkway in the Iwokrama Rainforest

There are three ways to get to the Atta Rainforest Lodge. 

You can either fly into Annai and arrange transportation with Rock View Lodge. This will be expensive if you travel solo. You could also fly into Annai and take a maxi-taxi back to Atta. You could also hitch-hike as in the Amerindian villages in this part of the world you are completely safe. You can also take a maxi-taxi from Georgetown. In the future, there may be air-conditioned buses driving visitors on the Georgetown-Lethem Road, so this could be a potential fourth way to get there.

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