Mazamari, Peru - Polarsteps
Mazamari, Peru: population: about 30,000 for the entire metropolitan area.
In 1873, Franciscan missionaries arrived and started cultivating coca and rubber. In 1913, there was an uprising by the native people and the missionaries were run out of the area. That was followed by an influx of immigrants from Austria, Hungary, and Germany. Between 1930 - 1940 the missionaries returned. They built a farmhouse, school, chapel, and airfield. In 1956, the airfield was finally officially opened after years of toiling at clearing the land. In 1958, a committee was formed to build a highway from Mazamari to Satipo. Since 1965 the airport has been used for training police paratroopers.
So, my impressions: Mazamari is a small town. It has no supermarket, but it does have a few decent minimarkets, as well as the Mercado and just about any other kind of store you could need. There are several nice parks and a restaurant (aimed specifically at tourists ) that has a nice property alongside the river. Otherwise, the city has nothing for tourists, but the mountains around are full of places to see. There are many tourist agencies waiting to take tourists up into the mountains. There are several ATMs and a couple of banks here, as well. The city is clean and pleasant, and the people are very friendly. The valley is very pretty and quite small. On my last day there while out walking, I met a woman who said "Hi" to me, in English. I asked her if she speaks English and she said yes, so we talked for a few minutes. She's a 2nd-grade school teacher there in Mazamari. She was the only person I met in Mazamari who could actually converse in English.
My South America Journey