The Brazilian Amazon Rainforest which is home to countless species of flora and fauna, indigenous tribes and beautiful natural wonders has plenty of unforgettable and exhilarating activities to enjoy. Whether exploring the wildlife of the Amazon with a local expert guide, canoeing through the flooded forests, piranha fishing or visiting a local tribe; the Amazon in Brazil goes beyond your wildest dreams. With so much to choose from, here are our favorite activities in the Brazilian Amazon which should not be missed off any itinerary to this remarkable rainforest.
♦ Exploring the Amazon’s Wildlife
Two of the best Brazilian Amazon activities which cannot be missed are exploring the verdant wildlife both during the day and night. During the daytime you will be able to enjoy canoeing through the Amazon waterways and flooded forests as you keep an eye on the treetops above and the banks of the river. If hiking through the forests of the Amazon in the day you will get to learn about the different tress, exotic fruits and medicinal herbs that grow in this natural paradise. By night, the Amazon is a whole other world where you can soak up the peacefulness of the sunset before the sounds of the jungle at night begin. With your senses heightened, you’ll be searching for caiman, alligators, sloths, snakes, birds and more, all made easier by their red twinkling eyes in your flashlight.
♦ Seeing the spectacular Meeting of the Waters
The Meeting of the Waters marks the spectacular natural border between the dark almost black colored Rio Negro and the sandy-colored Rio Solimões. From the Encontro das Águas, the rivers flow side by side, without mixing for some 7.5 miles before they eventually merge to officially become the famous Amazon River. This natural phenomenon occurs due to the differences in the temperature, the density of the sediment levels and the speed of the two rivers. The change in temperature is so significant that if you put your hand in, you would be able to feel the difference in temperature. Visiting the Meeting of the Waters just outside of the city of Manaus, is a must on any Brazilian Amazon itinerary not only because it is one of Brazil’s best natural wonders but marks the starting point of one of the world’s greatest rivers.
♦ Watch your fingers while Piranha Fishing
Surrounded by the stunning scenery of the Amazon as you set out in traditional wooden canoes through the waterways and flooded forests, you’ll be heading for one of the most unique activities in the Brazilian Amazon. Recreational piranha fishing will feed both your intrigue and trembling nerves as you come face to face with one of the most feared and misunderstood species in the world. Contrary to popular belief piranhas mainly eat fallen fruit instead of people, which bodes well for this experience. Your fears will be put to bed as you see locals and perhaps your guide taking a refreshing swim in the cool, piranha filled waters of the Amazon. Armed with a hook, a piece of meat and a stick to catch your piranha, this experience will go some way to rewrite their terrifying reputation.
♦ The magnificent Monkey Forest
In 1991, the Monkey Forest which provides rehabilitation and re-introduction facilities for wild animals in their natural habitat was created. The majority of the animals have been rescued after being confiscated from illegal commerce. While exploring this center, you’ll be able to see where the animals are taken once they arrive with a team of biologists and veterinaries waiting to evaluate and take care of them. A unique and special feeding system has been developed at the Monkey Forest where the animals receive s supplements of their natural diet, ensuring that they are being fed the necessary nutrients. This natural haven in the middle of the Brazilian Amazon Rainforest will show you the tireless work being done by government organizations, hotels and non-governmental organizations to ensure that the animals are kept in a natural and safe environment.
♦ Visiting a local Indigenous Community
Aside from basking in all the wildlife glory of the Amazon, an essential experience to have is visiting one of the few local indigenous communities. Visiting one of the local communities you’ll get a unique insight into their way of life, from learning about traditional medicinal plants to seeing how manioc flour is made and how latex is extracted from a rubber tree. You will also get the opportunity to learn more about their traditions, agriculture and social organization as well as hear about the modern day challenges that they face. While Brazil has the greatest number on uncontacted tribes in the world, having the opportunity to learn from a local tribe member about their way of life and survival is one of the most humbling and unforgettable experiences in the Amazon.