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Cruising gently down the Amazon

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The Amazon is a haven for some of the most exotic species on Earth as well as our most critical ecosystem. What better way to discover the incredible wildlife and meet some of the local people that inhabit this dense jungle region than by riverboat.

The Amazon River and its myriad of tributaries in the Amazon Basin extends across a vast area from Colombia into Brazil as well as Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador, such is the scale of this unique environment. Think not of images of basic steamer-style boats with hammocks slung between the rafters (although David Beckham chose this more basic means of transport in his recent adventure ‘Into the Unknown’ shown on BBC1 on Monday – if its good enough for Becks…?). No, we are talking about a gentler, more comfortable way to explore the depths of the rainforest.

We love the jungle – the incredible insects, reptiles, amphibians and mammals that inhabit both the forest floor and the top of the jungle canopy. The fact that our local guide can be pointing to a monkey or toucan in the trees, that takes us a few minutes more to find for ourselves, makes our wildlife observations all the more rewarding for the searching. Floating alongside riverbanks in small skiffs or dugout canoes makes the silence of this impenetrable forest so poignant as you glide slowly through a carpet of giant Victoria Regia waterlilies, looking out for poison dart frogs or caiman. Yes, it’s hot and humid and there are mosquitoes but we think this is one of the most fascinating places on Earth.

Lodges perched on a riverbank or oxbow lake (brilliant especially for wildlife such as river otters) are a great way to experience the forest as is overnight camping in hammocks in the jungle like David with a local tribe – for a true adventure! But if you’d rather enjoy the sights and sounds of the forest in rather more comfort, then river cruising is certain to be the best choice for you.

Out on the river, the air is cooler as you gaze at the passing river banks from a lovely sundeck and the insects less troublesome at sunset. By taking to the river instead of basing yourself at a lodge, you can reach in just a few short days the remoter depths of the rainforest, well away from larger centres of human habitations, making the chances of spotting rarer species of wildlife all the greater. Rising early morning to sit out on your private balcony may reward you with a sight of the amazing and bizarre pink river dolphins only found in the Amazon.

This is the life. Incredible wildlife excursions by day and early evening with a fantastic local naturalist guide interspersed by delicious gourmet cuisine, elegant contemporary surroundings back on board and even (dare we say it) a spot of air-conditioning for a great night’s sleep – important for when you need to get up early when the wildlife is at its most active. One of our favourite cruise vessels even offers suites with floor to ceiling windows and a plunge pool on your private cabin terrace, to soak up every minute of those passing views. Another offers the option of overnight luxury camping if you want to immerse yourself in the jungle environment for a short time. We can even offer an amazing super-yacht that plies the remote depths of the Amazon River in Brazil if you would like some added glamour as well as complete privacy for a private charter. 

We’ll help you delve into the dense jungle for a few days as part of your own bespoke wildlife adventure. However you would like to discover the rainforest yourself, be it by elegant small cruise vessel or by camping or lodging with a local tribe, do give us a call to chat through the different possibilities.