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Explorer Cruises – 4 Nights
HIGH WATER SEASON (December – May)
Aqua Expedition’s 4 night luxury river cruise on the Aria Amazon begins in the remote colonial city of Iquitos(IQT), Peru and transport guests in exceptional comfort deep into the Amazon rainforest, along the Ucayali River, the Amazon’s largest tributary, as well as the four other rivers, each one rich in vibrant wildlife with thriving rainforests. Go piranha fishing, trek into the dense jungle in search of Amazon monkeys, three-toed sloths, crown headed hoatzin birds, toucans, macaws and giant water lilies.
Come back to the comfort of our skiffs to cruise up close to view Taricaya turtles and spectacled caimans in their natural habitat while pink dolphins, at play, challenge your photography skills. As the Aria Amazon journeys towards the confluence of the Ucayali and the Marañon Rivers, considered the birthplace of the Amazon, learn from our experienced, English speaking naturalist guides about the diverse Amazon wildlife and birds of Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve.
Day 1: Monday
ARRIVAL/NAUTA/EMBARKATION/MARAÑON RIVERArrival Your guides await you, as your flight from Lima glides in for landing at Iquitos International Airport. After you’ve claimed your luggage, you will board an air-conditioned bus for your journey to the river. Transfer to Nauta’s main wharf. Enjoy a scenic one-and-a-half hour drive through the Peruvian countryside to the small village of Nauta. You will be traveling along the only road out of town . . . and it only goes as far as Nauta. Check-In From the moment you step on board, enjoy the ARIA AMAZON’s low-key luxury. As you settle into your handsomely appointed, generously proportioned suite, you will feel the vessel begin to move –the beginning of one of your life’s great adventures. We suggest you stand on the Upper Deck to take in the view, as the ARIA AMAZON leaves Iquitos behind. Over the next four days, you will also sail along the two largest tributaries of the Peruvian Amazon, the Ucayali and the Marañon, as well as on the mighty Amazon itself. You are embarking on a spectacular journey to a place visited by only a very few of even the most experienced world travelers. Safety Drill and Briefing on the Upper Deck Before dinner we will perform a routine safety drill. Then it’s into the air-conditioned lounge, where you will learn about life on board, and will have the first nightly briefing about your next day’s Amazon adventure. You will meet our naturalist guides and your cruise director, who will use video, photos, and maps to introduce the details of your journey deep into the Peruvian Amazon. Welcome Dinner Sit down, relax, sip fine South American wine, toast the beginning of a beautiful journey and enjoy the innovative Amazonian cuisine, created by our Executive Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, whose restaurant, Malabar, is the one of Lima’s top ranked dining experiences. Schiaffino’s imaginative use of local products – fruit, fish, spices – makes every meal a delightful adventure. (The menu always offers choices, including a vegetarian option.) Perhaps sip a nightcap on the Upper Deck, under the stars, before retiring.
Day 2: Tuesday
MARAÑON RIVER / YANAYACU - PUCATE RIVER / PACAYA SAMIRIA NATIONAL RESERVEBreakfast Expedition on board our boats to Yanayacu - Pucate River This morning, visit the Yanayacu - Pucate River within Pacaya Samiria National Reserve. Here on this black water river you can observe many species of flora and fauna, especially macaws and several species of primates like squirrels monkeys, capuchins monkeys and the famous river dolphins, either pink or gray. You will also have the opportunity here to fish for the ferocious piranha. Return to the ARIA AMAZON Lunch Lecture in the lounge by our naturalist guides who will tell you about sustainable development projects carried out in this part of the Peruvian Amazon Village Visit On this visit to a community located along the great river Marañon, our expert guides will introduce you to the native people of Amazonia. You will be invited to visit the lands where they practice subsistence farming and see how they cultivate wild plants and trees to earn income. In the primary forest, your guides will also teach you about the fruit trees and medicinal plants hidden in the jungle. Return to the ARIA AMAZON Dinner
Day 3: Wednesday
SAMIRIA RIVER / VILLAGE VISIT / NAUTA CAÑO / PACAYA SAMIRIA NATIONAL RESERVEExploration, breakfast on board and walk along the Samiria River This morning your naturalist guide will talk about sustainable development projects in Amazonia. You will visit one of the projects, where villagers are planting palms to obtain oil. Your guide will also show you the artificial nests created in the sand to protect turtle eggs. Then we will go into the jungle to encounter wildlife and learn first-hand about the value of medicinal plants found here. Keep an eye out for the famous Ceiba tree, the highest in the Amazon. We will have the opportunity to make brief trips in traditional Amazonian canoes and to swim in the waters of the Samiria River. Return to the ARIA AMAZON Cooking lessons Lunch Lecture in the lounge by our naturalist guides Excursion to Nauta Caño Nauta Caño is part of the Pacaya Samiria Reserve, also known as the Forest of Mirrors due to its dark lagoons, which reflect the scenery. In this area we will observe toucans, macaws, and iguanas, among many other species. As we make our way back to the ARIA AMAZON, you may also see alligators, frogs and fishing bats. Return to ARIA AMAZON Dinner
Day 4: Thursday
MARAÑON RIVER / “CASUAL” TERRA FIRME FOREST WALK / YANAYACU YACAPANABreakfast Marañon exploration and trail walk. We sail along the Marañon River, watching the different species of flora and fauna as we approach the Casual community where we will hike on land. Here you will see a plethora of wildlife, so keep your binoculars ready to observe tanagers and orioles as well as various reptiles and amphibians. Keep an eye out for the beautiful and eye-catching but poisonous frogs along this fascinating trail, as well as trees and medicinal plants. Canoeing at Sapira Creek - Marañon river (Optional) Return to the ARIA AMAZON Lunch Yanayacu Islands Exploration Yacapana and fishing The locals call Yacapana Islands “Islands of the Iguana" for the large number of these reptiles - like tiny dinosaurs - that inhabit them. We pass by in the skiff, giving you the opportunity to take plenty of pictures. After our arrival at one particular spot, you may use your hooks to try to catch some of the ferocious piranhas and other fish. Your naturalist guides will tell the story of the lake and its wildlife while you watch the sunset. En route, we will also go in search of the world's largest aquatic plant called “Victoria Regia." As the sun goes down, photograph the freshwater Amazon dolphins both gray and pink. Back to ARIA AMAZON Once back on board, the ship will continue its journey down stream, sailing toward Iquitos through the night. Meet in the lounge with our naturalist guides for the Crew Presentation The guides will introduce some of the crew members whom you may not have met, who worked "behind the scenes" to ensure your memorable trip has been filled with countless exceptional experiences. Dinner
Day 5: Friday
ARRIVAL IN IQUITOS/CHECK OUT AND DISEMBARK AT THE MAIN WHARF/CITY TOUR/TRANSFER TO THE AIRPORTBreakfast Travel summary Morning Excursion Depending on the weather, we will tour the flood zone that borders the city of Iquitos and observe the houses and shops that actually float on the Itaya River for several months of the year. Then we will visit the traditional market of Bellavista Nanay, bordering the Nanay River, to see products from the Peruvian Amazon including exotic snacks like the Amazon Caterpillar. Called "Suri," these caterpillars live in the palm trees and are considered a very appetizing snack for Amazonia people, even in the city. Return to the ARIA AMAZON Sadly, it’s time to finish packing. Please leave your packed suitcases in your suite for pickup before going to lunch. Light Lunch Disembarkation / City Tour / Manatee Rescue Center / Transfer to the Airport This afternoon, we will take you on a tour of Iquitos, glorious city in the days of the rubber boom. Visit the Manatee Rescue Center, a kind of animal orphanage for Amazonian manatees to rescue, rehabilitate and release them back into the wild. Later, we stop at the Amazonian Indian Market San Juan, where, you may wish to shop for local crafts before leaving. Guides will help with check in at the airport and stay with you until you have boarded your flight back to Lima.
|Price per person in USD||2019 to July 2020||August 2020 to 2021|
|Double Design Suite 1st Deck||$ 5,400||$ 4,700|
|Double Design Suite 2nd Deck||$ 5,600||$ 4,900|
|Departure day: Monday Single Supplement: 25% in addition to the adult rate. Discount Policy: 7 year old minimun on all departure - Child aged 11 or under : 20% discount - Third person sleeping on sofa bed: 20% discount - Third person being a child under 12 years old sleeping on sofa bed: $ 500 per night.|
- All meals while onboard
- Bike use
- All excursions off the Aria Amazon
- Beverages (non-alcoholic, select premium wines, sparkling wine and national beer)
- Transfers to/from vessel when arriving or departing on recommended flights
- Pacaya Samiria National Reserve entrance fee
- Air tickets to and from Iquitos
- Guide and crew gratuities
- Boutique purchases