Central Suriname Nature Reserve

Wildlife Reserve in Upper Suriname River

Covering 12% of Suriname's land area, this epic 16,000 sq km nature reserve was established in 1998 with a US$1 million donation from Conservation International. Around 40% of the plants and animals here are found only in the Guianas, and the vast majority of the reserve is dense, impenetrable wilderness. As you'd expect, visiting the park is challenging but hugely rewarding, and can only be done by guided tour.

The most commonly visited place in the park is Raleighvallen (Raleigh Falls), a low, long staircase of cascading water on the upper Coppename River, about two hours upriver from the nearest Maroon village. Resident wildlife includes spider monkeys, electric eels and the Guiana cock-of-the-rock, a spectacular blood-orange bird. Stinasu has well-run tourist lodges on Foengoe Island next to the falls. Nearby Voltzberg is a 240m granite dome accessible by a 2½-hour jungle trail and then a steep ascent – the 360-degree views of the jungle from the top are simply astounding.

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