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Brazil

Iberostar Grand Amazon Rio Negro
Purpose: Ecotourism, Discovery, Relaxation, Nature
No. of days: 6 days - 5 nights - Monday departures
First & Last Cities: Manaus
Other cities: Jaraqui Stream, Tres Bocas Island, Cuieiras River, Ariaú Region, Praia Grande
Starting cost: $1,725

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Day 1- Sun: Manaus

After arrival at Manaus airport you’ll be met by our representative and transferred to your hotel for overnight.


Manaus:

Situated on the banks of the Negro river, the capital of the state of Amazon, Manaus is an important center for ecological tourism. One of its most popular attractions is the Ponta Negra beach, where, when the river is low, the sands are exposed right down to the river bed, forming a beautiful contrast with the dark waters of the river itself. In the early years of the XX century, the city became very wealthy and the most important cultural center in the North region of Brazil. The old rubber barons dreamed of transforming it into an European style city and called it "the Paris of the Tropics". The architecture of the famous Opera House and the Municipal Market are examples of the luxury of this exuberant city. Manaus is a major tourist destination and the main starting point for trips into the Brazilian Amazon forest.


Day 2 - Mon: Manaus

After breakfast start your private tour of Manus including a visit of the Municipal Market, built at the beginning of the 20th century. Inside the impressive building, we will find a variety of regional products including fish, fruits and herbs. Afterward, we will pass by the Government Palace and view the nearby creek with its typical houses built on stilts. We will then visit the Floating Dock in Manaus, which is deeply connected to the cycle of rubber and, in recent years has undergone great changes, in order to make it competitive and suited to the demands of globalization. Our final destination is the Amazon Opera House, the primary symbol from the golden age of the rubber boom, built in 1896. With the help of a recent restoration, the building has maintained the splendor of that epic period. Drop off at the pier to board your Iberostar Grand Amazon cruise, settle into a luxurious cabin and watch the sunset from the Top Deck as the boat begins sailing on the Amazon. Tonight, the crew welcomes you aboard with a cocktail, followed by a delicious dinner. This is your first opportunity to take advantage of the ship's open bar policy! [AI]

 

Day 3 – Tue: Jaraqui Stream & Tres Bocas Island

If you are up early, there is a Sunrise Lovers' breakfast on the Upper Deck, where you can enjoy the early morning atmosphere. Otherwise, you can enjoy the buffet spread in the Kuarup Restaurant. After breakfast, we go and explore the Jaraqui region. Depending on the water level, we either stay on the expedition skiffs or take a guided hike along a jungle trail, where we can learn about the trees and plants that are of particular importance to locals for construction and the production of medicines. Back on board, we enjoy an introductory Amazon lecture in the Lua Salon and have lunch on the terrace of Kuarup restaurant, followed by time for a welcome siesta! In the late afternoon, we board the skiffs again to explore the second largest fluvial archipelago in the world, Anavilhanas, a huge collection of river islands and beaches, which are in striking and photogenic contrast to the black waters of the River Negro. One of the largest islands in the Archipelago is Tres Bocas, and here one can see dense vegetation that includes bountiful orchids and bromeliads and is home to birds such as toucans and macaws. After dark, caimans are abundant and fun to spot from the skiffs. [AI]

 

Day 4 – Wed: Cuieiras River & Ariaú Region

As the sun rises, the Grand Amazon arrives at the River Cuieiras, and we have the chance to enjoy the resplendent scenery as we take our breakfast. For our morning tour, we pay a visit by skiff and on foot to Cambebas, a fascinating indigenous village, where we learn how the locals have adapted their way of life to best suit their environment, visit their school, and have a chance to buy handicrafts. Upon our return to the boat, there will be a lecture on Amazonian Fish, including the dreaded piranha which we will then have the chance to catch for ourselves as we head back out onto the waterways of the Ariaú region. This is an area known for the abundance of monkey species and sloths, as well as birds of prey and kingfishers. We can also get to know the fish life ... by catching it (and then releasing)! The easiest species to catch is the famed piranha, and most people have a chance to be photographed with their catch. Alternatively,Ariau we may pay a visit to a local farm to learn about the way of life there. Once back on board, we have dinner, and then can enjoy the facilities and entertainment of the Grand Amazon. Later, there is a night tour by motorboat to spot alligators and listen to the night sounds of the Ariaú region. [AI]

 

Day 5 – Thu: Praia Grande & Rubber Tapping Museum 

There is the option of a pre-breakfast birding excursion by skiff for those that wish to enjoy the Amazon dawn and its abundant wildlife. Then, after breakfast, we head to the Praia Grande - which means, simply, 'Big Beach' in English - yes, that's right there are beaches on the Amazon! There is a chance to swim in the refreshing waters of the Rio Negro and even the incredible opportunity to interact with the rather peculiar-looking but remarkable pink Amazon river dolphins. Back on board there is a lecture on Amazon Birds in the Lua Salon. After lunch, we step back in time as we visit the Rubber Tapping Museum and learn about the shocking history of the rubber trade which made the region the richest in the world at one point in time. This evening we have a special gala dinner, with exotic Amazon dancing, as a celebration of what we have experienced and a farewell. [AI]

 

Day 6 – Fri: Manaus: Meeting of the Waters, USA

We wake up early in order to see the fascinating phenomenon known as the Meeting of the Waters at sunrise. This is the point where the black water of the Negro River and brown water of the Amazon River meet - but don't mix. Don't worry, breakfast will be available! We then continue to the port of Manaus, for disembarkation. At the pier you’ll be met by our representative and transferred to the airport to board your flight back home. [B]

 

[B] = Breakfast | [AI] = All Included (all meals, snacks and drinks)