Take a sofa escape to Guyana


In the midst of a global pandemic, travel has become all but impossible, leaving many with a chronic case of wanderlust as they are pent up at home dreaming of their next trip. In order to provide inspiration for a well-earned trip of a lifetime and to scratch the travel itch that so many have, the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) is on hand with four ways to experience the magical world of the little-known South American country from the comfort of one’s own home.

Book: The Lost World, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Even today the little-known South American country of Guyana remains uncharted territory for man, boasting around 85% forest cover from one of only four primary rainforests in the world. Perhaps it comes as no surprise then that this mysterious land of dense jungle and hidden corners was the inspiration behind Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World. Ancient tepuis (table-top mountains) erupt from the jungle canopy while the thick forest itself hides even the world’s largest single-drop waterfall; Kaieteur Falls. Though Guyana is home to giants such as jaguar, giant river otters, anaconda, giant anteaters and the harpy eagle, travellers will be hoping that the prehistoric giants from Conan Doyle’s novel remain purely fiction.

Podcast: Loyle Carner in GuyanaBBC Sound Odyssey

UK hip hop artist, Loyle Carner, travelled to Guyana in 2019 to discover his cultural roots from his father’s side with legendary Guyanese flautist, Keith Waithe. The pair travelled as part of a BBC Sound Odyssey project titled ‘Loyle Carner in Guyana’ to explore Carner’s cultural heritage via the music and gastronomy of the country. They even worked with local musicians to produce a brand new track inspired by their travels. The podcast wets the wanderlust appetite for housebound travellers as the duo transport the listener to the deepest rainforests of Guyana on a cultural, gastronomical and musical voyage of one of South America’s most undiscovered nations. The podcast is readily available on the BBC Sounds app.

TV programme: Lost Land of the Jaguar, BBC

Back in 2008 four heavyweight wildlife presenters, George McGavin, Steve Backshall, Justine Evans and Gordon Buchanan, all travelled to Guyana to document a journey through the unspoilt Guyanese rainforest. On their travels they encounter the unique fauna of the region and go in search of one particularly elusive creature, the mythical jaguar. Highlights from the show include George McGavin climbing into a hollowed-out tree trunk to see what critters are inside and Steve Backshall abseiling the magnificent Kaieteur Falls.

Game: Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, Playstation

Developer Naughty Dog’s Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune was the first instalment of a series that has since become a PlayStation classic. The action-adventure title sees protagonist Nathan Drake venture travel across Latin America in search of El Dorado. The player delves into the depths of the Amazon rainforest in search of hidden treasures encountering a series of challenges along the way. The immersive experience allows travellers to rekindle their sense of adventure and get a taste of what it’s like to venture into the pristine jungles of Guyana.

Social media: @discoverguyana

As travellers scroll through Facebook or Instagram, it is understandable that one can be overwhelmed with all of the worldly updates for the current circumstances. The Discover Guyana feed aims to cut through all the noise bringing great stories from the country that show the human side to tourism. The Discover Guyana pages are still active and sharing images and content that will inspire, remind travellers that there is still plenty of beauty in the world, and give them a taste of what discoveries await them in Guyana.


Comments (7)

  1. Amanda Madders says:

    Kaieteur Falls is spectacular. There are Patoma Indian legends around that too I think, but I can’t recall what exactly. Something about someone going over it in a boat, whether or not that’s even possible and to survive it, I don’t know. Good picks from popular culture that reference Guyana. I never would have thought of Unchartered. I imagine a trip here would be very eye opening because it’s not often you see such full on nature like this and such an impressive unspoilt rainforest, it’s really quite beautiful.

    • Steph says:

      Really is beautiful, I agree. I wasn’t aware of anything about their native populations. I’m sure it’s a rich cultural history, it’s in such a unique region of the world. I have my sights set on visiting the middle or central Americas sometime soon and spending some time there, learning about the local customs, etc.

  2. Tim says:

    You learn something everyday. I never knew that it was a real place that was the inspiration for HG Wells’ The Lost World.

  3. Rob says:

    There’s getting to be quite a dip in my sofa now. Suddenly there’s so much of the world that I can view from my sofa.

    • Amy says:

      Ha ha! That’s quite an image. Yes, this is definitely an invigorating approach to the virtual world of escape for like-minded travelers. Right from your phone, that didn’t seem possible when I was growing up. Kids these days don’t know how lucky they are with this kinda stuff!

    • Jody Reid says:

      I’d totally agree Amy. I saw a blog post meme thing earlier about how different the lock down would be 20 years ago with just a Nokia 3310, dial up internet and none of these online benefits, shopping, blogs etc. Go back any further and anything related to the Internet would have sounded like a crazy impossibility. Very lucky indeed that we can ‘armchair travel’ like this.

  4. Mika Robinson says:

    This is a brilliant idea for those who can’t just sit still. Aside from travel documentaries and books, I didn’t know that we can also hear podcasts about travelling. In light of these times, we really do not know when we can go to our dream destinations and experience having our most awaited getaways. All we can do now is to imagine being somewhere other than our own rooms and plan all of our vacations ahead. I have been watching travel documentaries and reading books about other countries these past few days. I can’t wait to get out of the house and be on my way to the airport. I am not the type of person that stays inside the house and watches TV all day. I love to go outside and wander, hopping in and out of different places, and enjoying the cool breeze and breathing in the fresh air.

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