After two days in Baños, Emily and I decided to take a day-trip to Puyo, a small Amazon town which is actually the capital of Pastaza province. We took the short hour-long bus ride to this town for one thing, really: monkeys. Ever since reading about the Monkey Rescue Center in Puyo I was determined to get there on my Ecuador trip. But that’s all we ended up doing there, and to be honest it was a little disappointing.
I didn’t love Puyo. I hate admitting that so much. Maybe if the weather was better and we had more activities planned, I would’ve liked it more. But when we got there we couldn’t even find a place to eat. The downtown was dirtier than the other towns we’d visited in Ecuador and the buildings were not picture-worthy. When we finally found a cafe to sit down at, the two girls running the restaurant didn’t know they had smoothies on the menu and looked baffled trying to make Emily’s sandwich. It was weird.
It also rained on us the whole time. I should’ve expected this though… I mean, we were technically in a rainforest town. But oh, how I hate the rain.
We took a taxi through the downpour to the monkey sanctuary, which is a few miles out of town. We were the only visitors at the time we were there. There are a few monkeys that roam around the sanctuary that I’ve read like to greet tourists, so I was really hoping one would come sit on my shoulder and we’d become BFFs forever and ever. But that didn’t happen 😦 The monkeys we saw out of cages stayed up high and never came down to greet us.
So Emily and I roamed around the grounds for a while taking a peek at all the monkeys, turtles, and birds they had. I couldn’t help but get a little close to some of them. I didn’t see the “no touching the monkeys” sign until we left… oops.
They had a line of cages with smaller animals like snakes and guinea pigs. There was a rotting guinea pig in one of the cages. Decomposing. It was awful and something I wish I’d never seen.
I got a weird vibe from this place. It was weirdly deserted the whole time we were there and the guinea pig thing really threw me off. Emily and I jumped on the next bus back to Baños and never looked back. I’m sure there are a ton of adventures to be had in Puyo, we just didn’t find them that day.