World Cup brings tourist benefits for Amazon jungle tribe

Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:57am EDT
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By Marine Hass

TATUYO Brazil (Reuters) - The sound of a boat chugging up the Amazon means only one thing for the indigenous Tatuyo tribe these days, another welcome group of free-spending tourists.

The number of visitors to the small reserve where tribe members live has soared since the World Cup started, bringing in the money needed to maintain the traditional way of living.

The Tatuyo live in the jungle a 40-minute boat ride from Manaus, the main city in the central Amazon.

Usually they host between 10 and 30 tourists a day. This number has rocketed to 250 since the tournament started, said Pino, the Tatuyo chief.

"During the World Cup our work situation has improved, the visits, the tourism, crafts... tourists from all over the world are visiting, a lot are being sent to us, so I am grateful," Pino told Reuters television.

Outsiders get a glimpse of life for the five families that live on the reserve and fish in the Amazon, grow manioc, banana, sugar cane and potatoes and hunt wild pigs and deer and also raise chickens.

Visitors sit inside a traditional wood and straw hut and are treated to a 20-minute performance by dancers wearing red face paint and feather headdresses.

The performance, which includes music played on wooden flutes and drums, is based on a ritual that usually last 24 hours.   Continued...

Tourists look at crafts made by members of the Amazonian Tatuyo tribe in their village June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Andres Stapff