"In the town plaza there is a huge concrete coca leaf, which is the plant they make cocaine out of, and it is not very subtle, they don't try to hide the fact that that is where all the money comes from," he says.
In April 2009, one year into his expedition, he reached the hardest part of the journey: the Brazilian rainforest. With worse flooding, poor maps, and parts of the Amazon rainforest which had never been walked, the threat of failure was overwhelming. Not to mention reports of fierce tribes that had, in the past, killed other British explorers.
Dozens of journalists were waiting for them, having followed their progress through the hundreds of blogs and video diary entries he had uploaded onto his website throughout the journey.
Ed has just released his first book Walking the Amazon, which is on sale now.