Amazon River

The Amazon River located in South America is the largest in the world. The Amazon River proper runs mostly through Brazil and Peru. It has over 1,00 tributaries reaching into Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, and Bolivia. The main is navigable for large ocean steamers to Manaus, 1,500 kilometres (930 mi) upriver from the mouth. Smaller ocean vessels can reach as far as Iquitos, Peru, 3,600 kilometres (2,200 mi) from the sea. Most Amazon river cruises begin or end at Manaus in Brazil.

More than one third of all species in the world live in the Amazon Rainforest, a giant tropical forest and river basin with an area that stretches more than 5.4 million square kilometres (2,100,000 sq mi) and is among the richest tropical forests in the world. The Amazon River has over 3,000 recognized species of fish and that number is still growing. Some estimates go as high as 5,000.

Things to see and do

* City of Manaus
* Santarem - meeting of the waters
* Tropical Rainforest
* Amazon pink river dolphins
* Wildlife viewing

Cruise Season - Jan - Dec
Currency - Real (R$) (BRL)
Language - Portuguese
Electricity - 2 perpendicular flat pins USA style
Time - GMT minus four hours
International Country Telephone Code - + 55 (Brazil)

Port Location - There are ports located at Manaus and Belem in Brazil, and Iquitos in Peru.

Transport Links - Manaus is about four hours by air from São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro. The Brazilian airline TAM also flies once daily direct Miami - Manaus which takes less than 5 hours in a Boeing 767-300. Copa Airlines also flies to Miami-Manaus by way of Panama in a Embraer 190. Delta Air Lines now has direct service from Atlanta. TAME flies from Quito to Manaus once a week, Azul Airlines plans to start frequent flights to Campinas late April.

Manaus is a major destination for boats on the Amazon River. From Belem on the Atlantic Coast, it takes about five days. Boats go to Porto Velho two-three times per week. Tabatinga on the border with Colombia can also be reached by boat from Manaus, with connections further on to Iquitos in Peru.

Due to road conditions, there is very little (if any) long-distance bus service originating from major cities in Brazil. There are daily buses to Boa Vista in the north and to destinations in Venezuela. The bus from Caracas in Venezula takes about 36 hours, but it is air-conditioned and has comfortable reclining seats and a toilet.