Republic of Suriname (map) is the smallest independent country in South America. *Paramaribo is capital and largest city. The vast majority of Suriname’s inhabitants (about 90%) live in Paramaribo or on the coast.
Located in the upper Coppename River watershed, the *Central Suriname Nature Reserve (map) has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its unspoiled forests and biodiversity. (*Surinamese Rainforest) In October 2013, 16 international scientists researching the ecosystems during a three-week expedition in Suriname’s Upper Palumeu River Watershed catalogued 1,378 species and found 60—including six frogs, one snake, and 11 fish—that may be previously unknown species.
The Amazon rain forests cover most of the Surinam surface and is home to thousands of birds, reptiles, monkeys and even a handful of jaguars. As tourism develops, guided tours and resorts in the heart of the jungle are popping up and make a comfortable option if you want to spend a few days spotting wildlife or plants, including the rubber tree, spike-footed palms, plenty of orchids and cacti.
At every riverbank you can charter boats at reasonable prices. It is wise to always travel with a tour guide.