On Tuesday August 6th, Bolivia celebrated their Independence Day! It seemed like every nook and cranny in the city was decorated with flags, banners, streamers and everything else that had the Bolivian colours. (I’ll post of the pictures of the decorations just in my hotel in a separate posts.) Because of this, it was a national holiday!  

Instead of spending the day in our hotel, since almost all stores and companies were closed, Jo-Annie (my co-volunteer also here with Uniterra) and I decided to make the most of our experience here in Bolivia and go to Güembé, a nearby bio-centre, resort and animal sanctuary. It is a very popular tourist spot and is highly recommended by the locals.

It is about a 20-30 minute drive from the city centre but still within Santa Cruz de la Sierra city limits. In a few words, it was absolutely beautiful. It has something for everyone. If you simply want to sit back an relax, there are 15 pools to enjoy. (There’s also a part of the resort that is a hotel if you wish to stay onsite). There’s an area to play soccer and beach volleyball as well as a lagoon to kayak around. 

There are also plenty of flora and fauna to enjoy. Some of the animals include monkeys, butterflies, parrots, parakeets, peacocks, vultures, tortoises, an ostrich, a few sloths etc. (and those are just the animals we saw!) One of the best parts of Güembé is that all the animals have been rescued and many of them are being treated and rehabilitated from injuries. Some animals are able to be re-released back into nature (as long as it if safe for them), otherwise they stay at Güembé with plenty of room to roam around and be safe from hunters, poachers and captors. 

Güembé is also an education centre for the environment and clean living with much of the power used being derived from their solar panels and wind turbine. If ever you are travelling to Bolivia, this is definitely a must visit in my book!

Taken in the Aviary
Taken in the Aviary
Taken in Güembé's "Jungle"
Taken in Güembé's Tortoise Habitat
Trying not to tip over in the Kayak Lagoon!
Taken in one of Güembé's 15 pools!
Some of the beautiful flora!
Some of the beautiful flora!
Entrance to the Butterfly Santuary
One of the many butterflies currently being healed.