Summary : Experience the diverse environments of the Amazon aboard a luxurious riverboat during the high water season. View one of the great spectacles of the Southern Hemisphere: the sun rising over the birthplace of the Amazon River. Fish for piranhas in hidden black water lakes. Explore the jungle and venture into the Amazon wilderness to see the famous Kapok Trees and meet indigenous people. Observe monkeys, toucans, caimans, iguanas, sloths and possibly pink dolphins during expeditions with highly knowledgeable naturalist guides. Enjoy incredible scenery on one of the most luxurious and exciting journeys to the Amazon.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Triple/Quad Cabins
$3,645 to $4,200
Meet at Iquitos International Airport then enjoy lunch with the group at a local restaurant or you will be served a box lunch en route, depending on the flight arrival time. The afternoon continues with an introduction to this historic city and the opportunity to meet an indigenous Amazon community. At 6:00pm you will board the Aria Amazon. Settle into your generously proportioned suite as you begin one of life’s greatest adventures. Following a routine safety drill and introduction to your naturalist guides, you will gather for innovative Amazonian cuisine created by your Executive Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, whose restaurant, Malabar, is the one of Lima’s top ranked dining experiences.
Aboard your comfortable skiffs, you will set sail from the Amazon River to the Yarapa River. Keep your binoculars ready to spot tropical songbirds, black-collared hawks, and sloths. You'll go fishing for the Amazon's notoriously ferocious piranhas while your naturalist guides share stories of Lake Moringo. As the sun sets, head off on an evening’s wildlife excursion with extraordinary stargazing on the black waters of Nauta Caño.
Rise with the sun to explore a 'lost river' along the Marañon River. After breakfast, you will take a jungle walk across suspended bridges deep into the high Amazon rainforest. Later, swim, canoe or kayak in Yanayacu-Pucate River as you look for legendary pink river dolphins. Focus your hi-tech telescope on the night sky to identify the planets and constellations. This evening before dinner, you will gather to meet some of the crew members whom you may not have met, working 'behind the scenes' to ensure your countless exceptional experiences aboard the Aria Amazon.
This morning, you will visit the local fresh market with your guides who can identify the day’s catch by the fishermen of the Amazon and the region’s exotic fruits. Return to the Aria Amazon for breakfast and to pack up. Before saying goodbye, you will visit the Manatee Rescue Center, a kind of animal orphanage for Amazonian manatees to rescue, rehabilitate, and release them back into the wild. You will also visit San Juan craft market en route to the airport. Lunch or box lunch will be provided, depending on the exact departure flight time, which may vary. Other local activities may be included as well, according to the flight schedule.
Read this itinerary as a guide only; the exact route and program varies according to weather conditions—and the wildlife you encounter. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition.
Special Guest Jean-Michel Cousteau: 2/9/2018
Ocean conservationist and filmmaker Jean-Michel Cousteau will be joining the 2/9/2018 departure. The son of ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau, Jean-Michel founded the Ocean Futures Society in 1999 to carry on this pioneering work and to honor his father's heritage. An award-winning producer of more than 80 films, Jean-Michel has been recognized internationally with numerous awards for his work in ocean. During this departure, travelers will experience the Amazon from the perspective of a conservationist and will get to know Cousteau along with a small group of fellow travelers. Guests will learn first-hand about Cousteau's deep experience exploring the Amazon and other remote areas around the world as he champions the cause of environmental conservation and protection. Each voyage will include evening talks with Cousteau, and screenings of several of his films.
What to Expect in High Water Season:
The Amazon River in Peru has essentially two seasons; a high water season (Nov through May) and a low water season (Jun through Oct). Whichever season you choose, you will see spectacular wildlife and plant life. During the high water season, when the Amazon Basin’s rivers and streams are approximately 23 feet higher than lower water season, more rivers, creeks and lakes are navigable. Flooded waterways put travelers much closer to the Amazon jungle canopy making it very likely to see many more mammals, including monkeys, and birds. The average temperature is slightly cooler (about 86 degrees Fahrenheit). During high season, areas to walk and hike are sometimes limited, you may encounter more mosquitoes, and fishing in the Amazon River can be more limited—though you still have close to a 50:50 chance of making a catch.
Group transfers to and from the vessel when arriving and departing on recommended flights; cabin accommodations and meals aboard the ship; bike use; excursions; non-alcoholic beverages plus select wine and beer only; Pacaya Samiria entrance fee. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare to and from Iquitos; private transfers; travel insurance; departure taxes; visa fees if applicable; items of a personal nature such as boutique purchases and spa services; guide and crew gratuities; fuel surcharge may apply.