Amazon Voyage


10 Day voyage aboard Zafiro

Cruise

The Tour

The rainforest of the Amazon Basin fires the imagination of dreamers and explorers, hinting at an adventure like no other. On this Amazon Voyage, daily excursions allow you to discover the secrets hidden under the rich canopy and along narrow tributaries beyond the river’s edge. Be amazed by the symphony of cicadas and tree frogs, howls from the howler monkeys and songs from the many species of birds found here. Spend evenings cruising the headwaters of Earth’s most legendary river, stargazing and storytelling as Peruvian lore becomes part of your personal story.

Travel aboard the Zafiro, a luxurious vessel chartered for your adventure, which blends stylish design and modern comforts. Classic touches include magnificent floor-to-ceiling windows and, for those on the Upper Deck, private balconies. A ship staff and crew of 25, including a cruise director and local naturalist guides, are joined by an IE Expedition Leader to ensure an unprecedented level of service. All 19 spacious suites are air-conditioned and feature en-suite bathrooms, a desk and ample closet space.

The Amazon Voyage includes a variety of flexible activity options, such as swimming, bird watching, jungle walks, kayaking, village visits, peaceful excursion boat rides, cooking demonstrations and more, so that you enjoy an enriching and fun adventure. Against a backdrop of rainforest and water, create a lifetime of memories. Join us in exploring the diverse ecosystems that comprise the heart of Earth’s greatest wilderness.

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The Itinerary

Amazon River Cruise Itinerary

Day 1 • Friday
U.S. / Lima
Fly independently to Lima, Peru, the nation’s capital and largest city, and transfer to the Swissôtel for the night. (D Aloft)

Day 2 • Saturday
Lima / Iquitos / Embark Amazon Riverboat / Amazon River
Fly over the Andes to Iquitos. Visit the Manatee Rescue Center, where biologists and volunteers care for endangered Amazon manatees that conservation authorities have rescued. Learn about efforts to help these endearing mammals. See how the manatees are cared for and prepared for reintroduction into their natural habitat. Prior to boarding the elegant riverboat, Zafiro, survey the history of local tribes at a small museum. Enjoy stargazing and storytelling with our local guides while cruising slowly on the Amazon River toward the confluence of the Marañón and Ucayali Rivers. (B,L,D)

Day 3 • Sunday
Confluence of the Amazon River / Río Ucayali

We awake this morning on the Amazon River, seeing some of the ever-changing panorama of jungle life as our Amazon River cruise ship continues upriver. Small villages dot the shoreline, and channels weaving through island mazes provide close-up views of a variety of birds. The confluence of the Ucayali and Marañón Rivers is famous as the beginning of the Amazon River in Peru. Amazingly, we are about 2,400 miles from where the river flows into the Atlantic. The river drops only about 350 feet the entire way! On our Amazon Voyage adventure, travel waterways aboard sturdy excursion boats to areas where we may find marsh birds such as oriole blackbirds, green ibis, yellow-headed caracaras, black-capped donacobis and white-headed marsh-tyrant.  We turn into the Río Ucayali, where we’re apt to find gray river dolphins and Amazon pink dolphins cavorting near the boat and along the shoreline. Later we take an excursion into the surrounding rainforest in search of giant water lilies and elusive wildlife such as monkeys and sloths. As dusk approaches, fishing bats begin their night’s foraging. (B,L,D)

Day 4 • Monday
Río Ucayali / Pacaya-Samiria Reserve

After a peaceful breakfast along the black-water Sapote Creek, we explore a small tributary of the Ucayali. We look for animals including primates, sloths and an enormous variety of birds. Our Amazon Voyage adventure continues upriver to the Pacaya-Samiria Reserve. Although scientific studies are far from exhausted, the Pacaya-Samiria is the known home to 450 bird species, 102 species of mammals, over 130 species of reptiles and amphibians, and countless plants. This afternoon, an excursion into this largest wetland reserve in the world provides the opportunity to see 13 species of primates, including monk sakis, red howler, saddle-backed tamarin and squirrel monkeys. We explore Caro Lake, connected to the river by way of a very small stream, where we may find flocks of greater ani, often seen following monkeys in search of insects disturbed by the monkeys’ foraging. We enjoy a nighttime boat excursion for a chance to find caimans, capybaras, common potoos, frogs and other nocturnal wildlife. (B,L,D)

Day 5 • Tuesday
Rio Pacaya / Pacaya-Samiria Reserve

Spend the day exploring this flooded realm, seeing wading birds such as herons, wattled jacanas and horned screamers. Venturing deep into the rainforest, tour an igapo (seasonally flooded forest), where plant life is very different from what we see along the main course of our Amazon cruise, and walk through the forest. Once we reach the reserve’s second checkpoint, hike around the ranger station. Lucky guests may release turtle hatchlings. A delicious lunch energizes us for afternoon excursions with our expert naturalists, where we may find scarlet macaws, hoatzins, black-collared hawks and red howler monkeys.(B,L,D)

Day 6 • Wednesday
Pacaya-Samiria Reserve

After an early breakfast, we board our excursion boats for access even further into the heart of these vast wetlands. As our Amazon Voyage adventure cruises the narrow waterways, we’ll find birds such as canary-winged parakeets and spectacular blue-and-gold and scarlet macaws. Primates also are fairly common, including noisy squirrel monkeys. We arrive at a ranger station, where we may take a short hike to explore the forest. After a picnic lunch, we gradually make our way back to our riverboat through the maze of waterways. Gradually make our way back to the riverboat through the maze of waterways. Enjoy an al fresco lunch and time to relax before our afternoon excursion. (B,L,D)

Day 7 • Thursday
Río Ucayali

Head back downriver, with a morning wildlife or other activity. Visit a village along the river, with the chance to learn about the lives of the “Ribereño” people who live there. Accompanied by guides who grew up along the river, this is a fantastic opportunity to stroll through gardens learning about medicinal plants and folklore, visit a school, or join in a game of soccer. The children are especially excited to see their faces on digital cameras and to show off their school and sing Peruvian songs. Depending on the villages visited during your Amazon River tour, you may also have the opportunity to see an IE-funded water treatment plant. The clean drinking water provided by these plants is having an enormous positive health impact in remote river villages. Learn about medicinal plants and enjoy a blessing ceremony by a respected village shaman. Aboard the ship, learn to make traditional Peruvian dishes or enjoying an enriching lecture. After dark, go out in excursion boats to listen to the sounds of the rainforest and look for nocturnal wildlife. (B,L,D)

Day 8 • Friday
Amazon River

Wake up early for a morning birdwatching excursion along the Yarapa River. After breakfast, try your hand at piranha fishing in Ubos Lake.  Piranha are very common in the slower-moving water. With luck, we may catch red-breasted, white or black piranha, and feast on our catch this evening at dinner. Once back aboard our Amazon River cruise ship, we enjoy a farewell dinner. (B,L,D)

Day 9 • Saturday
Iquitos / Lima / Depart

On an early morning excursion to Pilpintuwasi Rescue Center, see two- and three-toed sloth, red uakari and even a jaguar which have been rescued. Upon arrival back in Lima late this afternoon, dayrooms are provided until time to connect with independent overnight flights home. ( B,L)

Day 10 • Sunday
Arrive U.S.

We arrive Sunday and connect with flights home. (Meals Aloft)

 

Optional Machu Picchu & Cusco Extension

Day 9 • Saturday
Iquitos / Lima

Late this afternoon, we fly from Iquitos to Lima, and overnight at the Costa del Sol. (B,L)

Day 10 • Sunday
Lima / Cusco / Urubamba Valley

Fly to Cusco — the heart of the Inca Empire. Drive into the historic Urubamba Valley, stopping in Chinchero to browse and shop for Andean handicrafts and alpaca sweaters. Visit the Urubamba Market and spend tonight at the Aranwa Hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 11 • Monday
Machu Picchu

Board the train to Machu Picchu, where we spend the afternoon exploring the ruins with our guide. Our home for the next two nights is the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 12 • Tuesday
Machu Picchu

Today is yours to explore Machu Picchu or simply relax! Wake up early and hike to the Sun Gate or enjoy some early morning birding in the abundant gardens surrounding our hotel, home to 16 species of hummingbirds. (B,L,D)

Day 13 • Wednesday
Ollantaytambo / Sacsayhuamán / Cusco

Catch the morning train back to the Sacred Valley. Explore the mighty archaeological wonder of Ollantaytambo, where ancient temples and fortresses were built to protect the Sacred Valley. After a Paso Fino horse show at Wayra Ranch, continue across the valley toward Cusco. We stop at Sacsayhuamán — a huge fortress of massive stones which zigzags across the side of the mountain. Spend tonight at the Aranwa Hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 14 • Thursday
Cusco

Stroll the streets of Cusco, exploring the Koricancha — also known as Santo Domingo, Santa Catalina Convent and the Cathedral. After lunch, the afternoon is free to explore on your own before a farewell dinner featuring Andean fare. Return to the Aranwa Hotel for the night. (B,L,D)

Day 15 • Friday
Cusco / Lima / En Route

After breakfast, fly back across the Andes to Lima. Enjoy a superb lunch of local delicacies before an afternoon at leisure. Dayrooms are available at the Swissôtel. Transfer to the airport this evening for flights home. (B,L)

Day 16 • Saturday
U.S.

Arrive in the U.S. and connect with your flight home. (Meals Aloft)

2018 Dates:

March 16, 23, 30
April 27
May 4, 11, 18, 25
June 15, 22, 29
July 6, 13, 20
August 17, 31
October 26
November 16
December 21

2019 Dates:

January 4, 11
March 22, 29
April 5, 12
May 3, 24
June 14, 28
July 5, 12, 19, 26
August 16, 30
September 6, 27
October 4, 18
November 1, 8
December 13

The Prices

2018 Pricing Double Single
Lower Deck Suite $5,348 $7,648
Upper Deck Suite $5,748 $8,048
Master Suite $6,148 $12,296
Zafiro Suite $6,648 $13,296
Deposit required for Amazon Voyage: $600 per person.
In-Country Air: $399 per person.

 

2019 Pricing Double Single
Lower Deck Suite $5,698 $7,998
Upper Deck Suite $6,098 $8,398
Master Suite $6,498 $12,996
Zafiro Suite $6,998 $13,996
Deposit required for Amazon Voyage: $600 per person.
In-Country Air: $409 per person.

 

4-Day Machu Picchu Extension 
2018 Double Single
Regular Departures $3,748 $4,948
Holiday Departures $3,848 $5,048

Deposit required for Machu Picchu extension: additional $150 per person.
In-Country Air: $399 per person.
Park Fees: $185 per person. 2018 pricing subject to change.

2019 Double Single
Regular Departures $3,499 $4,499
Holy Week Departure $3,599 $4,649
Christmas & New Year Departure $3,649 $4,749

Deposit required for Machu Picchu extension: additional $150 per person.
In-Country Air: $409 per person.
Park Fees: $192 per person. 2019 pricing subject to change.

Other

Public Spaces on the Zafiro

SAVOR regional specialties and contemporary cuisine infused with flavors from the surrounding rainforest. The atmosphere is casual yet elegant as you sample Amazon fusion cuisine while enjoying spectacular views from the panoramic windows.

CONNECT with fellow travelers, chat with your local guides or enjoy snacks and a drink in the large indoor lounge. The comfortable furnishings make a perfect spot for relaxing with a book or enjoying the passing scenery.

GLIDE past the Amazon rainforest and clusters of wooden houses on stilts with children playing soccer as you sip morning coffee and take in the fresh air from the river’s most luxurious Observation Deck. Siesta on a cushioned lounger beneath a soaring canopy — ideal for avoiding the sun’s glare. Plus, ease into the Zafiro’s outdoor Jacuzzi to relax after a shore excursion.

INDULGE  in aromatherapy or a massage in the spa, which is staffed by a wellness specialist.

 

Because conditions at the time of our visit and new opportunities always determine what is possible on the Amazon, our Amazon cruise expedition itinerary is flexible. The itinerary shown is a guide to what we may do, but it’s always subject to change.

Tour includes:

  • Full educational program with lectures and field interpretation
  • All excursions accompanied by English-speaking naturalist guides
  • Nightly guides’ reception onboard with complimentary beer and wine
  • All transportation by land and ship
  • All transfers, porterage and service charges
  • All meals aboard (as noted)
    Legend for Meals: B – Breakfast, L – Lunch, D – Dinner

Not included:  international and in-country airfare; U.S. departure taxes; ticketing fee; air or ship fuel surcharges; tips to naturalist guides and crew; passport fees; and items of a personal nature, alcoholic beverages, etc.

All prices are per person.

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The Highlights

  • The ever-changing panorama of rainforest life and the awesome variety along the mighty Amazon.
  • Excursions offer everything from birdwatching and stargazing to piranha fishing and learning about medicinal plants from a shaman.
  • Sample local delicacies and international favorites in the Dining Room, which features gracious wooden floors and large windows.
  • Observation deck with outdoor jacuzzi
  • Spa staffed by wellness specialist
  • Daily discussions by naturalists in the Lecture Room, with air-conditioning, comfy sofas, and home-theater system.
La Estrella Amazonica.       Photo by Axel Fassio.
La Estrella Amazonica. Photo by Axel Fassio.
Enjoy the open-air bar deck.       Photo by Axel Fassio.
Enjoy the open-air bar deck. Photo by Axel Fassio.
One of two 18-passenger excursion boats.       Photo by Van Perry.
One of two 18-passenger excursion boats. Photo by Van Perry.
Piranha fishing in Ubos Lake.       Photo by Axel Fassio.
Piranha fishing in Ubos Lake. Photo by Axel Fassio.