The Amazon - travel the river of 1,000 wonders

South America's lifeline remains one of the world's greatest secrets, with a new adventure around every bend. Take our intensive expeditions to new shores abundant with the wonders of creation. Where the dense jungle offers exotic species a habitat, where the traditional hunting grounds of the American Indians stretch out before you and tropical plants flourish in luxuriant profusion, you, the passionate explorer, are completely in your element.

Expedition in the purest sense - close encounters

Your great natural adventure extends over more than 4,000 km (2,485 mi.), right through the green lung of South America. Travelling close to the shore with the BREMEN and the HANSEATIC never ceases to offer fascinating panoramas. In the narrow tributaries where even these small, manoeuvrable expedition ships reach their limits, robust inflatable expedition boats (Zodiacs) will carry you further into the heart of your adventure. In small groups, you can immerse yourself in hidden paradises and marvel at exotic plants and creatures.

In this way, for example, you will reach the village of Libertad, home of the native Yagua, who will dazzle you with body paintings, traditional dances and insights into hunting with blowpipes. On spectacular Zodiac rides, you will explore the vegetation on the banks of the Rio Jutai, gliding past bromeliads with bright-red flowers and orchids. Macaws and toucans may suddenly pass by overhead, while brightly coloured butterflies flutter about the boat and, with luck, river dolphins pop up above the water. Behind the green curtain, constant rustling and cracking noises announce the presence of diverse wildlife, while the exotic scent of the plants will captivate your senses.

Shedding light on hidden aspects of the jungle

Your on-board experts will give you special insights into life on and in the river. Take Cuxiu Muni, for example, a traditional village with houses on stilts. As you explore the forests, you will be told interesting facts about Brazil nut trees, stilt palms and leafcutter ants. A night-time Zodiac ride is also an unforgettable experience: watch out for nocturnal animals that can rarely be found during the day revealed in the conical beam of a searchlight, including caymans, their reflective eyes glinting in the light. Providing a total contrast to the "jungle chorus", Manaus is a city with a population of millions right in the heart of the rain forest, a place where history meets the present day. You will also be amazed here at the "Meeting of Waters", where the "black" Rio Negro converges with the muddy, yellow Rio Solimoes. South America's joie de vivre will also flow around you in Parintins. With magnificent costumes and their intoxicating music, the dancers relate the ancient legend of the resurrection of a bull. Now how about some stunning Caribbean flair? The beach at Alter do Chao will transport you for hours to the South Seas. You can also look forward to the day trip through the watery labyrinth of the Breves Channels - the famous tributaries of the Amazon will reveal impressive natural spectacles. These many, unforgettable aspects of your expedition on the River of Life will remain with you for ever.

Overwhelming biodiversity

Your expedition with the HANSEATIC and BREMEN will bring you especially close to the Amazon's exotic flora and fauna, whether viewed from the ship's deck or your seat in a Zodiac. Every day will be another chance to observe the different species in this paradise world. This diversity is also vividly apparent when you go on a night-time Zodiac ride. Accompanied by the chorus of frogs and cicadas, keep a lookout for night monkeys and caymans.

The hummingbird has to consume about 50 % of its body weight in food each day. The reason: a high metabolism and up to 1,300 heart beats a minute..

Moving in slow motion and with 15 hours sleep every day, sloths are the very personification of repose. Who would have thought that they can even swim short distances? Their blue-green colour is due to the algae that thrive on their fur in the tropical climate..

Many myths and legends surround the pink river dolphin. What is true is that they twist their bodies together in a supple way to skilfully swim past obstacles.

With its loud cries, the toucan dominates the wildlife chorus in the jungle. Its beak is likewise easily spotted and is composed of fine bone struts.

The caymans found in the Amazon can grow up to 6 m (19.7 ft) long. When hunting, they reach up to 32 km/h (19.8 mi./h) and can stay under water for an hour without breathing.

The social behaviour of squirrel monkeys is very distinctive. They spend more than half the day watching and communicating with one another.

People on the river

As you travel close to the banks, you can look forward to some fascinating encounters. In the Breves Channels, for example, you will discover the huts of the river dwellers set against the backdrop of the green jungle. Many native people living around the Amazon have retained the knowledge passed down through the generations, from hunting with blowpipes to fishing from a dugout and basket weaving. Nowadays their children still learn how to "read" the jungle, in other words, follow animal tracks and interpret the meanings of noises, by observing their elders.

Experience and competence

Researchers and scientists, adventurers and explorers: a team of prestigious experts in various fields accompanies every cruise. Wise minds who, as well-travelled cosmopolitans, translate the essence of their professions to passengers as passionate speakers on board. Real authorities in their field, they are able to express specialist knowledge in words - clearly, lively and effectively all at once. Be it in exciting presentations, on Zodiac rides and landings or in personal conversations, our experts will happily share their knowledge with you. Time and again, they will draw your attention to something special that others just don't notice, transforming the riches of nature and the animal kingdom into an exciting treasure trove of knowledge you can really appreciate.

All cruises in the Amazon