Summary : Experience the diverse environments of the Amazon and enjoy incredible scenery aboard a luxurious riverboat during the low water season. This itinerary manages to fit major highlights of the Peruvian Amazon and the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve in an action-packed itinerary. Go piranha fishing, trek into the dense jungle with experienced guides in search of wildlife such as Amazon monkeys, three-toed sloths, hoatzins, toucans, and macaws, and unravel the mystery of giant water lilies. This journey focuses on the Ucayali tributary, where wildlife feeding and nesting grounds are aplenty.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking
Just-Released Offer Solo travelers pay no single supplement
$4,700 to $5,600
Meet your group at the Iquitos International Airport then journey by air-conditioned vehicle through the Peruvian countryside to arrive at Nauta Lounge in time for lunch (or you will be served a box lunch en route, depending on the flight arrival time). In the afternoon, set off on your first skiff excursion to visit the birthplace of the Amazon.
At 6:00 p.m., embark the ship and settle into your suite as you begin one of life’s greatest adventures. Following a routine safety drill and introduction to your naturalist guides, gather for innovative Amazonian cuisine created by Executive Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, whose restaurant, Malabar, is the one of Lima’s top-ranked dining experiences.
Start the day like Amazon River dwellers, cruising along the Ucayali River in a skiff. As farmers and fishermen go about their business, search for pink river dolphins in pristine waters. Later in the day, return to the skiffs to ride along the black waters of the Pacaya River at dusk, searching for the mysterious wildlife that comes out after dark and enjoying extraordinary stargazing.
The rewards of an early start are plentiful, including a full day excursion by skiff along the Pacaya River, going deeper into pristine landscape shared with great egrets, capuchin monkeys, and taricaya turtles. After lunch, attend a paiche fishing demonstration, the second largest river fish in the world. Later, venture out by skiff on the Ucayali River alongside the banana boats transporting their jungle products to the port of Requena, keeping an eye out for pink river dolphins.
Choose to go jungle walking, canoeing, kayaking, or swimming on the black water Yarapa or Clavero River in the morning. In the afternoon, take a short jungle walk in the San Jose de Sarapanga forest and see unforgettable giant water lilies. Before dinner this evening, gather to meet some of the crew members who work 'behind the scenes' to ensure your countless exceptional experiences aboard the Aria Amazon.
This morning, visit the local fresh market with guides who can identify the day’s catch and the region’s exotic fruits. Return to the ship for breakfast and packing. Before saying goodbye, visit the Manatee Rescue Center, which rescues, rehabilitates, and releases Amazonian manatees back into the wild. You will also visit San Juan craft market en route to the airport.
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. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
What to Expect in Low 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. In the low water season, many of the trails and jungle paths that are otherwise submerged in the high water season are easily accessible, providing more opportunities to experience the Amazon rainforest on foot. The low water season typically sees less mosquitoes and temperatures average about 98 degrees Fahrenheit. Significantly lower water levels mean that some creeks and lakes otherwise accessible by skiff during the flooded season are out of reach by boat. During low water months, fishing is ideal as aquatic populations are confined to a few key areas. For example, it’s far easier to land a piranha! For birdwatchers, dozens of species of migratory birds are in flight in the Peruvian Amazon during the low water months. Regardless of low or high water seasons, exposed mud banks tend to attract large numbers of colorful macaws, who feed on clay to neutralize toxins from the food they ingest in the forest.
Group transfers to/from vessel when arriving/departing on recommended flights; shipboard accommodations; Pacaya Samiria National Reserve entrance fee; all excursions; use of bicycles; all meals onboard the ship; beverages (non-alcoholic, select premium wines, and national beer). Subject to change without notice.
Airfare to/from Iquitos; private transfers to/from vessel; travel insurance (highly recommended); departure taxes; visa and passport fees; items of a personal nature such as boutique purchases and spa services; guide and crew gratuities; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos: © Aqua Expeditions