Are you looking for an original and authentic way to discover the biggest tropical forest in the world? Cruise along the Rio Negro and the Amazon, aboard a traditional boat from this region, to really delve into your surroundings.
Imagine yourself sailing down the Amazon in a boat discovering the incredible scenery along the water and penetrating into the very heart of this unique ecological paradise.
On our Amazon and Rio Negro cruise, you will discover the wonders of the two main river ecosystems of the region, offering an exhilarating vision of the vast array of Amazonian nightlife. Let yourself be transported on the milky Amazon waters and then sail on the black waters of the Rio Negro that will take you deep into the forest. This unforgettable cruise is a unique opportunity to discover the wildest and most authentic side of Brazil.
During this adventure, you will encounter unique and preserved ecosystems, isolated from the rest of the world, where life is practically unchanged since the dawn of time and the landscape is untouched by Man. This package cruise, is a real journey back in time, a return to the oldest wilderness on the planet!
The boats on which you will enjoy the Amazon and Rio Negro cruise are typical of this region, with their two or three decks, each surrounded by a walkway overlooking well-equipped cabins (double beds, private bathrooms and air conditioning). Inside, everything is provided for your well being with common areas to entertain, eat and rest while admiring the landscape. A comfortable home base from which you will visit the surrounding areas every day for forest walks, local tours and canoe trips.
During the 6 days of the Amazon and Rio Negro cruise, you will go to some beautiful, virtually uninhabited places, where you will make some exclusive and rare encounters. The itinerary for this cruise includes many activities and excursions, for a holiday combining the pleasure of discovery, with fun and serenity. You will also come back with rare firsthand experience and knowledge of this unexplored environment and its inhabitants.
Just some of the rare and privileged moments you will experience include; meeting members of an indigenous tribe and seeing how they survive in the rainforest and swimming with pink dolphins in the warm waters of the Anavilhanas. At night, you will get close up to crocodiles and for the more adventurous of you, learn to catch them with the help of flashlights.
Furthermore, you will try your luck at fishing for formidable piranhas, learn to recognize some useful plants used for survival in the forest and how to distinguish the emblematic birds of the region. You will learn how to navigate a canoe between the tree branches of the flooded forest or along the river while looking out for animals.
Once back in the port of Manaus, the jungle and its rivers will no longer be a strange environment to you. You will have discovered a completely different world from your daily life where nature is powerful and dominant.
On the Amazon and Rio Negro cruise enjoy:
Visits to the Indigenous communities
The Anavilhanas archipelago
Canoe trips along the Igarapés
The giant Victoria Regia lilies
Amazon and Rio Negro Cruise – Itinerary at a glance
- 1 private transfer airport – Hotel Tropical
- One night in a standard double room at the Hotel Tropical
- The cruise for 6 days and 5 nights (Starting day 1 at 2pm and ending Day 7 at 12:00) on a traditional boat in a double cabin, full board with all the excursions described here included.
- 1 private transfer from the port to the airport
- 1 private and guided tour of Manaus
Visit the river that irrigates the lungs of the world : Amazon
The Amazon is the largest river in the world, irrigating the whole Amazon jungle and its surroundings which is an area of more than 6 million kms².
This is more than one and a half times the size of Europe! Near Manaus where the two rivers meet and where the cruise will begin, the river is more than ten kms wide.
Each year, during the rainy season, the river flow doubles to reach 200 000 m3/ second. The river overflows bursts its banks and floods the land, fertilizing the soil and re-shaping the banks, modifying the landscape every year.
During your Amazon and Rio Negro cruise, you will discover how the locals have evolved in this hostile environment; by learning to use the forest resources and changing their lifestyles according to the season, members of the local communities are able to thrive. On your visit accompanied by a guide, the indigenous indians will demonstrate how to cultivate cassava, a staple food in the Amazon, also you can taste the typical jungle fruits that are anything but scarce!
You may choose to go on a piranha fishing trip, a popular local activity. And once night falls you can observe the thousands of stars and constellations in the sky.
Finally, your cruise on the Amazon will end with a visit to Janauary Park where you will discover the famous giant water lilies, or Victoria Regia.
A cruise navigating along the blackwater Rio Negro and the clear waters of the Amazon.
Around Manaus you will discover an amazing and unusual phenomenon, the « Encounter of the Waters».
This is where the course of Rio Solimoes with its cream coloured and silty waters that are rich in nutrients and fish, meet the black, acidic waters of the Rio Negro. The two rivers run along side each other but do not mix. This phenomenon continues for tens of kilometres and you can see the waters of the two rivers creating superb patterns on the surface, forming a moving boundary in the middle of the river.
Once on the Rio Negro, you will penetrate even deeper into the Amazon rainforest. Along the course of this Amazon tributary, you will go up to the Anavilhanas National Park, the largest freshwater archipelago in the world. Here you will discover a vast area extending for more than 50kms, where the river cuts the jungle up into hundreds of little green islands teeming with birdlife. It’s a unique and totally preserved location due to the creation of the national park over 30 years ago, stopping all exploitation of animal and plantlife.
It is in this idyllic setting that you may meet the pink dolphins who are friendly creatures, and the subject of many legends. It is surely an unforgettable experience! You will also encounter a local indigenous community, to learn a little more about the customs and lifestyles of the Amazon.
Finally, the canoe is an ideal means of transport to explore this vast ecological conservation area, populated by hundreds of animal and plant species. You will have several opportunities to go for walks along the banks of rivers and local islands. During this Amazon and Rio Negro cruise, there will also be moments of calm and serenity where contemplation and relaxation will be the name of the game!
Looking for a top quality cruise? Choose the premium boat, the chance to cruise in even more comfort and style!
In choosing a premium boat to go on your Amazon and Rio Negro cruise you will ensure that extra degree of comfort.
On board, you will enjoy one of 16 large 15m² cabins equipped with all the necessary comforts and quite pleasantly decorated. You will also find a reading room equipped with a library and a large choice of DVDs. It’s an ideal place to meet the other travellers and share your impressions of the trip.
There is also a large panoramic terrace on the third deck which is ideal for observing the spectacle of the mighty Amazon unfolding before your eyes.
With this boat, you definitely add to the authenticity of the cruise – a tasteful decor and an atmosphere worthy of the ‘belle epoque’ era.
Amazon and Rio Negro Cruise – Detailed Itinerary
Day 1 (Sunday) : Manaus/ In
When arriving by plane in Manaus by day, you can appreciate the gigantic size of the Amazon river – 11kms wide at the confluence, it is the largest river on the planet.
After picking up your luggage, you will meet your driver waiting for you.
Transfer to the hotel you have chosen for this stay.
While driving down the streets of the Amazonian capital to reach your hotel, you will discover a vast city that has imposing and luxurious modern towers and at the same time modest wooden houses and vast industrial complexes.
The population working in the streets is predominantly mixed race, descending from the melting pot of local indigenous peoples and European settlers.
Arrival at your hotel and check-in to your room.
Free time at the end of the day.
Night at your hotel.
Day 2 (Monday) : Manaus – Cruise
Early in the morning, you will have your tropical breakfast buffet at the hotel.
Then you leave with your guide for a cultural tour of the centre of Manaus (about 3 hours).
During this visit, along the streets shaded by huge tropical trees, you will discover the Belle Epoque and Art Nouveau treasures of the historic centre. This district is the symbol of the city’s glory between 1835 and the First World War thanks to the economic importance of rubber. It was once called the “Paris of the tropics”, before the crisis that put a brutal end to local prosperity.
From that era you can see the Adolpho Lisboa Market and its beautiful wrought iron structure, or the palaces of European merchants who came to live in this prosperous city. Not to mention the highlight of the visit, the majestic Amazon Theatre that has become the symbol of the town.
Once back at the hotel you will pack your luggage before going to lunch (the reception can keep your bags).
At 14:00, your guide will meet you at reception and take you to the boat. If you stay at the Tropical hotel (see “Accommodation” section below), it has a pontoon and the boat will pick you up directly from the hotel.
Arrival at the boat. After boarding the boat you will be introduced to the crew and your cruise will begin!
A welcome drink is offered during the briefing on the itinerary and the services on board the boat.
After a snack, you will be invited to the lounge to listen to a mini-conference on the Amazon which will include mostly ecological issues. Meanwhile, the boat goes up the Solimoes River and its silty rich waters.
Dinner is prepared by the cook with local and fresh products and is served on board around 19:00.
After the meal, the guide will take you on a canoe trip along the river for a night out. In the darkness illuminated by the stars, he will show you nocturnal animals with the help of powerful flashlights.
It is at nightfall when many animals go out in search of food, taking advantage of the darkness to go about their activities. While crisscrossing the river in the middle of the singing concert of thousands of animals and invisible but numerous insects, you will be able to observe the darkness, on the lookout for the reflections of the artificial light in the eyes of the animals. Small caimans are harmless and not shy, snakes coiled on the tree trunks at the edge of the water, hunting owls, frogs of all sizes and colours or lazy sloths; the night reveals a new dimension to this unique ecosystem.
Back on board and first night on the water in your comfortable cabin with double bed, bathroom and air conditioning.
Day 3 (Tuesday) : Cruise
At dawn you wake up in the heart of the wilderness on Lake Janauaca. You will set off for your first exploration of the awakening forest by canoe.
A magnificent show in the shimmering colours of the Amazon dawn unfolds before your eyes, a splendid time to discover the animals, some going to sleep while for others, a new day begins.
Along the river you will observe the birds and their extraordinary variety, imagine the reaction when you go around a bend and are faced with pink dolphins frolicking cheerfully in the water!
Back to the main boat for breakfast, which will be followed by a walk in the forest of about 2 hours, perfect to start exploring!
The walk in the forest really wakens your senses as you walk along observing and listening as your guide tells you about plants that are useful for living in the forest along the way.
After discovering the wonders of Lake Janauaca’s ecosystem, you will meet the human inhabitants. The guide accompanies you for a visit to the Caboclos who live around the lake. They are indigenous people living in the heart of the forest and you can discover their way of life based on fishing, cassava cultivation, fruits, logging and other products derived from the forest.
The late afternoon piranha fishing is a fun time that also doubles as a great excuse to stay quietly contemplating jungle life in the setting sun with its fantastic colours.
After dinner, another night ride in a canoe to observe the animals and admire the star studded sky. The constellations of the southern hemisphere are revealed in all their magnificence far from the light pollution of the modern world, a beautiful picture.
Day 4 (Wednesday) : Cruise
When you wake up, you will go on a morning jungle excursion with your guide. During this, you cross different types of forests including the mysterious and poetic flooded forest, known by the Amazonian Indians as Igapo. After this outing you will head back to the boat.
While having breakfast, the cruise continues to reach the ‘Encounter of the waters.’ This is the meeting of the Rio Solimoes and the Rio Negro.
A unique show where the water laden with alluvium of the Solimoes flows alongside the tannin darkened waters of the Rio Negro, without mixing for many kilometers because of their different temperatures and densities. It’s a mesmerizing spectacle when you watch the whirls of clear water stand out against the dark background, like swirls of cream poured into a giant black coffee.
The boat then goes up the Rio Negro past the port of Manaus, offering a view of the floating docks, the market, the old customs house and the dome of the Opera house which seems totally out of place in such a natural setting.
After lunch on board, there is a lecture on the Amazon, mostly focusing on ecology to better understand the fragile balance that maintains this ecosystem. For example, the role floods play to enrich this biotope on lands that are virtually void of any nutrients.
The rest of the day flows quietly by while the boat goes up the river. This is the perfect time to settle into the hammocks on the upper deck.
After dinner, another canoe trip to listen to the chorus of birds and frogs and observe more nocturnal animals.
Day 5 (Thursday) : Cruise
Early in the morning, a canoe exploration of this new region which, because of its black waters, is home to a different fauna and flora from those encountered in the loamy waters of the first few days of the cruise.
A peaceful walk in the cool of dawn where we can see parrots and toucans.
After breakfast, off for a trek in the jungle, you will discover all the new fragrances that can be found in the different leaves, fruits, woods and animals.
Return to the boat where you can peacefully cool off, bathing in the calm waters of the river before lunch (no piranhas or crocodiles in sight, rest assured).
Lunch on board.
The afternoon is spent sailing through the Anavilhanas National Park.
You will visit one of the largest freshwater archipelagos in the world, a maze of waterways snaking between the 400 or so islands spreading over no less than 350 018 hectares.
It’s an exceptional place for its beauty but also its preservation through the establishment of a conservation unit in the 1980s and the National Park itself in 2008. With these conservation measures, wildlife is abundant and you can observe animals easily in the paradise setting of this ecological sanctuary.
In the rainy season, most of the islands are under water and you only see the treetops. From June to November, sandy beaches gradually appear and you travel through peaceful shallow channels.
At the end of the afternoon, the guide suggests another canoe trip for a different experience of this wonderful park under the pink light of the sun setting on the horizon.
Dinner is served on board. The traditional dishes are based on produce from the river and the forest and are all as delicious as each other.
You will enjoy the evening on the roof deck of the boat admiring the Milky Way shining a thousand lights in the sky, surrounded by the song of the forest and its inhabitants before going to sleep.
Day 6 (Friday) : Cruise
Early in the morning, you can go fishing for the legendary piranhas which are very tasty to eat, and other fish.
No need for complex and sophisticated equipment here! A simple branch of wood, with a wire and a hook with bait, combined with a little skill will soon fill your basket. When the fish bites, you get excited and feel the adrenaline, normally you end up hooked too!
If you wish, your catch of the day can become your lunch after being masterfully prepared by the cook on board.
Return to the main boat.
After breakfast, you leave for a visit of a native community.
Here, you will discover new flavours of some typical Amazon fruits like the Cupuaçu and Tapereba and those of the palm tree like Açaí, Tucumã and Pupunha.
During this visit, you will learn about the manufacture of cassava flour, the “native bread”, which serves as a food base for a large part of the rural population of Brazil.
You will experience a special moment in this community, discovering the traditions and way of life of a people with a totally different culture, closely linked to the forest and the seasonal cycles of the region. It will also be an opportunity to buy some local handicrafts to bring back as a souvenir of this adventure.
You then return to the boat and have lunch while she sails on.
In the afternoon, there is a stop on a sandy beach where you can swim in the dark waters of the Rio Negro with a pod of pink river dolphins. These Aquatic mammals, accustomed to friendly human presence, are not shy and they do not hesitate to come play with you, to twirl and jump out of the water, clicking and doing pirouettes or begging for fish as a treat .
The exchange of touches and looks with these distant aquatic relations are emotional moments. This unforgettable encounter will remind you of the marvellous beauty of life and the adaptability of nature; these once ocean animals have moved into and thrive in a totally different world.
In the late afternoon, you are invited to go on a last canoe trip through the islands and under the imposing foliage that overhangs the banks of the Igarapés to try to see more wild animals. You sail peacefully along these small natural canals that connect the rivers, moving silently between the trees, scanning the heights in search of interesting creatures.
When you come back, the boat starts its return trip and descends the river towards the Amazon.
You will have your last dinner aboard the boat.
Day 7 (Saturday) : Cruise
In the morning, you go with your guide for a visit of Lake Janauary, it is a great place to see the famous “Victoria Regia”, or giant water lilies.
These aquatic plants that form large discs with raised edges, which can exceed 2 meters in diameter and support 15 pounds in weight have the particularity of flowering at night. When the moonlight appears, the white buds of the flowers blossom and give off a sweet perfume while the petals are tinged with pink.
Back to the boat.
During breakfast, the boat sails to the ‘Encounter of the waters’ of the Solimoes and Rio Negro rivers.
Finally, it is time to return to civilization. The boat will return to the port of Manaus or to the Tropical Hotel, according to your choice.
On arrival, a driver will drop you off at the airport or your hotel.
End of our services.
Hotel Saint Paul (standard)
The Hotel Saint Paul has unique assets that make it an interesting establishment for this cruise package. In the heart of downtown, a few minutes walk from the theater Amazonas, and twenty minutes from the port area where the Municipal Market is located, its position is ideal if you want to easily explore the historical part of Manaus.
This new building with basic but well-equipped rooms, has all the necessary comforts and is excellent value for money. It is also the only hotel to our knowledge, that has a room with an exclusive view of the dome of the symbolic theater of the city, which lights up at night and adds a touch of glamour to your stay. It’s a perfect address for couples and travellers not looking for luxurious facilities.
Hotel Tropical Manaus Ecoresort (superior)
With its 611 colonial-style rooms emphasizing comfort, the Tropical Hotel is a quality resort and one of the finest accommodation options in the city. To this you can add facilities with sports fields, a large pool, activities for all ages scattered over a large park. It is located in the most affluent area of the outskirts of Manaus, the recent district of Ponta Negra, at the water’s edge and away from the town centre, less than 20 minutes from the airport.
If you do not want to stay in Manaus, and are looking for a full leisure infrastructure or want to enjoy the convenience of being able to board the cruise boat directly from the hotel, then the Tropical Hotel is the right choice of accommodation.