Tips

Malaria

Travelers to Saamaka should take malaria prevention. Contact the BOG (Bureau Openbare Gezondheidszorg) at the Rode Kruislaan 22 (tel. 499494; weekdays from 8-12h) for a prophylaxis consisting of Paludrine in combination with Chloroquine, which is sold at a price of about Euro 17,- . The prophylaxis does not give 100% protection, while it occasionally may happen that people forget to take their pills. It addition to prophylaxis it is therefore always wise to sleep under a mosquito net, to wear protective clothing (long pants, long sleeves, socks) and to apply insect repellent, in particular during the early evening hours. Also bathing just before sunset is recommended as it is said that mosquitoes are attracted by some of our body odors.

When in Paramaribo again it is possible to have your blood checked on a possible infection at the BOG 10 days after coming back from Saamaka.

In case you got fever, headache or muscular pains after returning to your country your doctor preferably should send you to (or contact) an institute specialized in tropical diseases.

Drinking water

Never drink water from the river, but ask the local people for drinking water. Boil or purify it before drinking.

Sunburn

People who are sensitive to sunburn should take special measures while traveling by (open) boat. The skin should be covered as much as possible (hat, cap, long sleeves, long trousers) and a good sun cream should be applied. In case you per se want to take a sunbath, you should do this in the early morning or the late afternoon hours. But even in the shade you will get a nice brown vacation color.

Swimming/bathing

Let your guide or other local people indicate a safe spot where you can bath or swim. One possible danger is the (often unexpectedly) strong current in combination with (sometimes very sharp) rocks, while also sting rays may pose a problem elsewhere. A sting by these rays is not deadly, but it is very painful. The use of plastic footwear is recommended when bathing in or near a rapid. In case you are caught by the current you should try to go down with your feet ahead.

Local etiquette

There are many local rules nearly all unwritten. Ask your guides about these rules and do not go to places on your own without prior consult with him/her.