Friday, January 16, 2009
Kayak Startup and a relaxing day on the Tigre
As I mentioned in a previous post, most people try to escape the city in the summer. The heat and humidity, noise and pollution of down town can really wear one down. However, if you do find yourself in the city, you need to make the best of it and a new Kayak startup El Dorado Kayak (http://www.eldoradokayak.com) might be just the thing.
El Dorado is the name of a local fish found in the Tigre. I've been kayaking with El Dorado twice now. Once I went with my girlfriend and my parents who were on a visit. The second time I took a couple of good friends from Boston who were here on their honeymoon.
What is special about El Dorado Kayak is that they take you away from downtown Tigre, about an hour by Bus Boat or 20-25 min by private charter, to the island off a sparsely traveled canal where a few locals live.
Each time we went, Chapa, Martin and Carol took great care of us. Upon arrival you start off with a little snack which I didn't think we would need, but when you get there...you are hungry! Next we got outfitted with life jackets, adjusted the seats in the kayaks and got a kayak lesson from Martin who was our guide on both trips.
The next thing you know the kayaks are in the water and off you go. What is especially nice is that their launching point is towards the end of a narrow canal so it is very peaceful and calm. Also they use wide, double kayaks which are very stable. My parents, who are not frequent kayakers, were very comfortable in them. The biggest challenge for us was deciding who will kayak together. I'm happy to report both my parents and the honeymooners are all still married. :-P
The kayaking itself can be very relaxing like when I went with my parents. We meandered down the delta in absolutely no hurry at all, taking lots of photos. Or it can be more invigorating like when I went with my friends and we hauled ass for parts just for the fun of it.
Regardless, each time I have gone I have had what I can only describe as a moment of zen. It must be the combination of green and quiet. I felt extremely relaxed and amazed this change of scenery is so close and yet seems to transport you so far from the stress of the city.
Once back at the island, the asado (barbeque) is in full gear and we ate and drank while chatting away. Some others took advantage of the hammock or a dip in the delta. Time does fly and before your know it, you realize you have to head back to reality. If you are looking for an up close and personal view of the delta, I doubt you can find a better way.
What recommendations do you have for spending the day out in Tigre?
Full disclosure: the folks at El Dorado Kayak are good friends of ours. So I do hope you give them a try. They recommend week days as the delta is a lot less busy. If you do go, like any startup, they would highly appreciate anything you can do to help them get the word out such as writing a testimonial, sending them some photos for their website, writing a blog post and of course word of mouth and word of Facebook, twitter and whatever else to your friends and followers.