Travel Market Group - Beni, Bolivia

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Travel Market Group, located in Trinidad, the capital city of the Department of Beni in northern Bolivia, is one of the tour operators that offers the Ruta del Bufeo, a tour down the Ibare River during which visitors can see the famed Inia boliviensis (Bolivian pink river dolphin).

Roger Rodas and his son Joaquin own the Inia, a motorized 10-seat boat used to travel down the Ibare and other Amazon tributaries on the various tours they offer. I was privileged to take the Ruta del Bufeo tour in May 2009 with Roger.

Travel Market Group offers three tour options:

The first is a one-day tour which leaves from Puerto Ballivian or Loma Suárez port, just 8 kilometers from Trinidad. Visitors spend the day traveling down the Ibare River (known as the River of Birds) because of the incredible number of bird species you can see here. All along the river you'll also see typical indigenous homes and small villages, and also have the option of doing some fishing. Of course your main objective is to get a glimpse of the pink river dolphins. Bolivia is the only place in the world you can see this species.

The second option (2 people minimum) involves a 2-day/1-night trip. The first day is the same as option one above. Visitors will return to Trinidad to spend the night at a hotel. On the second day you'll have the opportunity to visit the Tapacaré Tourist Center located near Laguna Suárez, 5 kilometers from Trinidad for wildlife observation, lunch, and and afternoon practicing water sports on the lagoon.

The third option (3 days/2 nights) includes a night of camping in the community of San Carlos, a hot dinner, and a bonfire night along with night hikes. On the second day you'll visit the community, nearby lagoons, and the artificial hills built by the Moxos culture thousands of years ago. At night you'll return to Trinidad where you'll spend the night at a hotel. On the third day, after a hotel breakfast, you'll head out to the Tapacaré Tourist complex for a day similar to option 2 above.

Roger is a truly knowledgeable guide, sharing information about the local wildlife and communities all throughout the trip. It's one of the most exciting adventure tours you can take in Bolivia. And did I mention Roger makes a killer lunch?

Travel the Ruta del Bufeo. It's unforgettable! Contact Them:

Calle Néstor Suárez No. 53
Trinidad - Bolivia
Tel: (591-3) 462-7739

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