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At the headwaters of the mighty Amazon River, you'll find the seasonally flooded forest of the Pacaya-Samiria Natural Reserve. An intricate network of jungle waterways wind like tendrils through the cathedral of green here. Naturalist and certified photo instructor Linda Burback shares what it's like to spend an exhilarating week inside this pristine natural wonder.
Imagine spending much of your day asleep? That’s the leisurely life of a brown-throated sloth. These arboreal mammals spend the bulk of their time hanging around the cecropia tree canopy in tropical places like the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve in Peru or the cloud forests of Costa Rica. One could say munching leaves is their livelihood. The herbivores even have a special tongue with sharp, backward-directed spines to aid in slicing the thick leaves.
Since Machu Picchu became known to the Western world, it’s become a symbol of the unknowable past—a massive feat of construction built entirely by hand in the high mountains of Peru. Today, a UNESCO World Heritage site, Machu Picchu was designed and built in the 15th century as a royal estate for Inca emperor Pachacútec.