MANATEE AMAZON EXPLORER

The Amazon River cruise experience is a magical one. Monkeys that can fit in your hand, unique bird hatchlings that still possess claws on their wings like their prehistoric ancestors, insects whose bodies emulate not only sticks, but half-dead leaf litter, furry spiders and gigantic snakes, palm trees that can “walk” and countless specimens that have not yet been identified by Science. As a longtime navigator of this Chosen Land, I can attest to the fact that the experience is a true ode to exploration.

The Manatee’s experienced crew was assembled specifically to make your adventure the most enjoyable, educating and unforgettable, while our programming staff thought out the best possible itineraries so you could come back with the truest “big picture” of the Amazon, in all its cultural and natural glory. Always in support of the conservation of the protected areas we visit –Yasuní National Park, Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve, Limoncocha Biological Reserve, etc. – traveling with us is traveling the right way… the way the Amazon was meant to be traveled.

The Manatee Amazon Explorer is fully equipped and maintained in order to handle the most challenging conditions and circumstances, and is manned by experienced and conscientious expedition staff and crew. The canoes used for daily shore landings are rugged and versatile and are operated responsibly by experienced personnel. Onboard you will be fully briefed on all pertinent safety issues and concerns, as well as our environmental policy; passengers also receive appropriate and detailed briefings before each landing.

It includes

    • Native Guide
    • Transport
    • All meals

Does not include

    • Drinks
    • Tickets to the park

5 DAY EXAMPLE ITINERARY – MANATEE AMAZON EXPLORER

Day 1: Monday, Quito – Coca – Napo River – Yasuni National Park

Departure from Quito. A short 30-minute flight takes us to the frontier town of Coca (Francisco de Orellana) – and transfer to the dock, where we will embark on a motorized canoe and navigate down river about 1 ½ hour, to board the M/V MANATEE AMAZON EXPLORER.

Throughout the journey we have a chance to admire the rainforest landscape and banks of the great Napo River. Immediately after boarding the M/V Manatee, we continue navigating downstream. Passengers will have their first opportunities to enjoy the exciting features of our cruise ship: the spacious social areas, comfortable suites, and an observation deck that offers spectacular views.

An evening walk is organized after sunset; it gives us the opportunity to discover the forest’s nocturnal activity and listen to the incessant sounds of nature.

Day 2: Tuesday: border with Peru (the heart of Yasuni)

After a delicious breakfast, we disembark on land for our first daylight close-and-personal tropical rainforest experience, where we will learn about the relationship between plants and animals while closely watching out for samples of Amazonia’s fascinating biodiversity at every turn. After lunch, the M/V Manatee navigates to one of the most pristine and little explored sections of Ecuadorian Amazonia, home to the legendary pink river dolphin, black caiman and anaconda. We may also find river turtles and various species of monkeys, as well as the primitive Hoatzin, a one-of-a-kind bird locally known as "the Stinky Turkey". The only way to actually visit this flooded ecosystem is by canoe, a ride that will reveal the beauty of a lush jungle world.

For our more adventurous passengers, please inquire about our glamping program.

Day 3: Wednesday, meeting the community - activities on board - island exploration

Breakfast on board. We visit a school located on the banks of the Napo River, where we will have the opportunity to interact with children of the area and learn about the educational system of a remote jungle community in Ecuador.

We return on board the M/V Manatee for lunch and a moment to relax while we navigate upstream. We will offer a lecture and documentary screening, and if time permits, learn about (and make) typical handicrafts of the area. In the afternoon, we explore one of the largest river islands of the Napo River.

Day 4: Thursday, Observation tower – Limoncocha Biological Reserve

In the morning after breakfast, visit an observation tower 100-feet high, built against a giant kapok tree. From the top of the tower, we will be blessed with this unique perspective of the forest, looming over the treetops and the greatness of the Amazon Basin.

In the afternoon, we visit Limoncocha Biological Reserve, a fascinating protected area where more than 478 bird species and several monkey species have been recorded. This activity will extend into the evening, when we will have a chance to spot black caiman with the help of our flashlights. Return to the M/V Manatee for dinner.

Day 5: Depart Manatee Explorer and return to civilization

In the morning, disembark the M/V Manatee and transfer by motorized canoe to Coca (1 ½ hour ride); flight to Quito.

The Manatee Amazon Explorer river cruise offers amazing programs from 3 to 8 days.

Regular plan

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun

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