This is a 4-day/3-night journey that takes us into the infinite green of biodiversity that extends the entire length of the Amazon basin. Once in the Yasuni National Reserve we will cruise downriver and admire the rainforest landscapes and banks of the great Napo River, visiting sites such as the Pañacocha Biological Corridor (with its Pink river dolphins and common Squirrel monkeys), an actual parrot clay lick, and the Sani Warmi Interpretation Center to learn about indigenous culture in the rainforest.
“I enjoyed the scenery and the exotic wildlife on the islands very much. The airport transfers in both directions went smoothly and the service on board was very good.”
Departing from Quito, we will take a short 30-minute flight to the Amazonian town of “Coca” (Francisco de Orellana). Once there, we will drive to the dock and embark a motorized canoe for a 1-½ hour ride downriver to the M/V Manatee Amazon Explorer.
Immediately after boarding the M/V Manatee, we will cruise downriver and admire the rainforest landscapes and the banks of the great Napo River. Passengers will have their first opportunities to enjoy the exciting features of the cruise ship: the spacious social areas, the comfortable suites, and an observation deck that offers spectacular views.
After sunset, an evening walk will be organized to gives us the opportunity to discover the forest’s nocturnal activity and listen to the incessant sounds of nature.
After sailing downriver to the Pañayacu River delta, we will take a canoe trip to experience the sights of this fascinating reserve. Keep your eyes out for Pink river dolphins, common Squirrel monkeys and much more. Pañacocha (“Piranha Lake,” in Quechua) is an ecosystem flooded by white waters (the perfect habitat for the infamous Piranha), as well as the Water monkey fish (“Arawana”) and White caiman.
After a refreshing swim (for the courageous!), we will enjoy a delicious Amazon-style BBQ meal and refreshing beverages at a nearby camping site. In the afternoon, we will head out on exploration trails, and return onboard for dinner.
After breakfast on board the Manatee, we set out to visit one of the most amazing spectacles on this side of the western Amazon: a parrot clay lick. These unique pools of mud are rich in minerals that attract hundreds of parrots and parakeets every day. If weather permits, we will have a chance to marvel at this astonishing natural phenomenon.
Later we will visit the Sani Warmi Kichwa Interpretation Center, where a group of Kichwa women will talk about their customs, cuisine and everyday life. They have created the center in order to showcase their culture, which offers you a unique opportunity to learn about Amazonian lifestyles along the Napo River. You will also have the opportunity to buy crafts, local products and souvenirs.
After lunch, we will make a stop at the Yakukawsay Kichwa Interpretation Center, and end the day with an interesting evening walk through the forest (depending on accessibility, river water levels and weather conditions).
In the morning, we will disembark the M/V Manatee and transfer by motorized canoe back to Coca (a 1½ hour ride) for your return flight to Quito.
“The trip was excellent from beginning to end. The Isabella II was a fine ship and the crew and guides were all of the highest quality. I would recommend them to others. For us, the ship was the perfect size – not too small and not too large”