Anyone lucky enough to visit the Amazon Rainforest will be treated to a natural spectacle that’s without comparison on Planet Earth. This, the last great – under threat – wildlife-rich environment is quite simply the greatest marvel of Mother Nature we have left.

Covering swathes of no less than eight countries – Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana, The Amazon Rainforest makes for one of the ultimate South America travel experiences when visiting any one of them. And the lifeblood of it all? The mighty Amazon River, of course. From the Andes Mountains in Peru to the Atlantic Ocean via Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Bolivia and Brazil, the Amazon River not only brings life to the rainforest but makes for a magical cruise destination, too.

Your entry point into the Amazon is usually the busy river port city of Manaus, best reached by plane with regular international domestic flights coming from Miami, Panama City, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, and (indirectly) elsewhere in Brazil.

Ultimately, it’s all about the wildlife, and it’s the Brazilian Amazon we want to pay particular attention to with some top tips and a few of our favorite boutique boat rides and luxury lodges, to see the jungle’s waterways in style.

TOP AMAZON CRUISES

The Amazon Clipper Premium

A low-key Amazon cruise vessel but one that offers plenty of charm, the relatively small Amazon Clipper Premium can access remote spots and secluded locations that a larger boat could not. The observation deck to admire passing wildlife is fantastic and by only holding 32 passengers at a time, the vessel feels intimate and befitting of its surrounds, too.

The Tucano

The boutique Tucano Amazon expedition vessel is known for accessing smaller tributaries and channels, always on the lookout for wildlife though separated from the busier waterways thanks to its size. In fact, the 18 lucky passengers aboard each Tucano sailing will enjoy exclusive access to certain parts of the Central Amazon Conservation Complex.

The Desafio 

This wooden-clad, traditional-looking schooner offers an intimate exploration of the Amazon River in what feels like an traditional boat. The vessel itself has just 12 cabins and is a one-off in terms of style. There are plenty of excursions to enjoy on land, while onboard you’ll still find a sun deck, lobby bar, and nicely equipped cabins.  

Untamed Amazon

Boutique and minimalist in style, the Untamed Amazon luxury river boat offers something altogether different. The cabins alone are spectacular with their floor-to-ceiling windows looking out across the riverbank as you sail. Then there is the 5-star onboard service, gourmet cuisine, a jacuzzi and massage area too. All of this, with interesting routes, excursions and a focus on Amazonian communities makes Untamed Amazon truly special.

Iberostar Heritage Grand Amazon

For a larger vessel full of facilities, the Iberostar Heritage Grand Amazon is a good one to go for. This Amazon vessel comes with comfortable cabins and a long list of fantastic excursions to enjoy as you tour the waterways. Meanwhile onboard, you can look forward to everything from a gym to multiple bars and restaurants, shopping outlets, a theatre, even a swimming pool, jacuzzi and massage room – among many more amenities.

 

BRAZIL’S LUXURY AMAZON LODGES

Amazon Eco Lodge

Found not far from Manaus, the floating Amazon Eco Lodge on the River Juma is a rustic option set in a private nature reserve. The décor and layout is straightforward, leaving less less time to lounge around the grounds and more for Amazon exploration with night-time caiman spotting, piranha fishing, wildlife walks, river swimming and much more.

Anavilhanas Jungle Lodge

For the ultimate boutique stay in the Brazilian Amazon, pick the super stylish Anavilhanas Jungle Lodge on the Rio Negro. This 5-star property of just 16 luxury cottages comes complete with a swimming pool, gourmet restaurant, intimate excursions and irresistible accommodation options with their own private deck, hammock, and minibar.

Cristalino Jungle Lodge

Worth visiting for treetop views from the onsite watchtower alone, Cristalino Jungle Lodge – in the southern Amazon’s Cristalino State Park – is a special place to stay. Accessible only by boat, Cristalino Jungle Lodge feels like a complete immersion into the rainforest, and is especially well-known for the incredible birdwatching opportunities here – some of the best in the Amazon.

Juma Amazon Lodge

Juma Amazon Lodge is a rustic, novel option in the Amazon, best-known for the cabins which sit atop stilts for a unique elevated position in the forest. All accommodation here – and the grounds of the lodge generally – aim to honor the building style of local forest communities. Think thatched roofs, bare wood balconies, and hammocks. Juma Amazon Lodge feels like a full immersion into the rainforest, though a comfortable one with good food, a bar, plenty of fantastic wildlife tours, and a river pool and sun deck too.

WHEN TO VISIT THE AMAZON?

Brazil is a year-round destination for Amazon River cruises and rainforest lodges alike. Across the country it’s warmest between November and March (average temperatures between 27°C and 33°C) and, while the Amazon’s dry season runs from July to December, the water levels are lower which can hinder cruise routes. 

As a result, July to December is great for luxury lodge stays and plenty more walking routes become accessible during that time, though the wildlife spotting opportunities are generally better in wet season – as well as heightened water levels being best for Amazon cruise options.

WHAT TO WEAR IN THE RAINFOREST?

No matter what time of year you visit the Amazon Rainforest, you need to be prepared. Come rain or shine you’ll need protection from mosquitos, solid shoes/walking boots for day trips, swimwear, waterproofs and of course, sunscreen. Here’s our quick list of Amazon essentials to set you up for a magnificent adventure:

-Long tops and trousers

-Safari tops

-Safari trousers

-Hiking socks

-Hiking boots

-Hat

-Bug spray

-Mosquito net

-Insect repellent

-Binoculars

-Lightweight rain jacket

-Hand sanitizer

-Cotton pyjamas

-Day pack

No matter what your travel style, level of luxury or adventure, the mighty Amazon Rainforest is a place on Earth like no other. 

Speak to the Brazil travel specialists at info@atelier.travel  and they will craft your dream tailormade tour.

 

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