NÓMADAS - #4 - João Kopke in the AMAZON

In this edition of Nómadas we will travel with João Kopke to the wonderful and magical Amazon. João is a young professional surfer, national champion, who left his professional streak aside to dedicate himself to his nomadic streak. Continuing to love surfing the waves around the world, he is also dedicated to absorbing with all his senses the emotions obtained in his travels. As he says: "I like to live as a sensation nomad and not as a pro surfer".

Why choose this destination?

I chose it because I lived all my childhood and adolescence watching documentaries about animals without ever, in fact, having great contact with animals on trips (since I traveled mainly looking for waves).

Short itinerary and points of interest of the trip?

We arrived in Manaus which is interesting and has points that are worth visiting since it is a city with a peculiar history but, in my opinion, mainly to feel the difference between the urban and the wild in the Amazon.

Even in Manaus you can see the royal victories or the meeting of the waters on a boat trip, but the adventure itself will probably start with the trip towards the forest. It is impossible to do it without planning, a guide or a place to stay. I advise a destination similar to where I was (where the main feature was that there was only one lodge to operate). Otherwise, it is possible to end up in a place with a lot of people and unhealthy tourism to the forest and have a less good experience.

From there, it is with the guide. Spiders, snakes, monkeys, alligators ... They all appear as you take a boat through the flooded forest or walk through the trees. In the process, piranhas are eaten that we fished ourselves, camping in the forest ... anyway, there is a script but it is full of unforeseen events welcome!

Two or three moments that marked you most during the trip?

To be paddling in a canoe completely alone with only the Revelino (who became a guide to a friend) to go hunting in the middle of the night and hear a giant crocodile "grunt" in the distance - I tell this story in more detail on my website . Sleep practically in the open, on the forest floor, after the hunt. And shape a wakeboard from scratch with the locals and teach them how to play with a board and a boat.

The biggest difficulties you faced?

The most frequent was that normal feeling of traveling alone for some time when we met several people, but when a group leaves, we have to adapt to being alone again and forming new friendships. It is something I like, on the one hand, as it allows us to meet a lot of people, but on the other hand, the initial discomfort of forming a new relationship is tiring. But in general, I would say it is better than worse.

Curiosities regarding differences in culture?

The most striking, for me, was seeing how comfortable people are with nature. How they play with animals, how they don't mind walking barefoot everywhere and, mainly, how the river is their home and everything that matters. The fish comes out of the river, the water, the river goes everywhere and the river plays. This connection is very special.

What not to forget to take to this destination?

Flashlight! The cell phone is clearly not enough to go to the bathroom at night.

What time of year did you go? Do you advise this or another time?

It was during the rainy season (January). It is an interesting time because the river enters the forest and we can navigate through the trees. But, on the other hand, it is more difficult to see animals on land.

If you came back what would you do differently?

I would try to stay as long in the woods as possible and less time in the lodge. I would try to arrange with my guide a way to stay camping in the woods all the time or almost all of it and learn more survival techniques.

For those who want to follow more adventures of this nomad:


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