Manaus is the gateway into the eco-treasures of the vast Brazilian Amazon jungle. This capital city of the state of Amazonas lies on the placid banks of the River Negro in the heart of the Amazon rain forest. About 10 kilometers downstream the patent eco-tourism begins where the River Negro (black) and the River Solimoes (yellow) converge to form the Amazon River. The convergence is quite a spectacle as black and yellow waters begin to merge. Legend has it that if you throw a coin into the exact point the colors meet, you will have eternal good luck.
Manaus, an industrial city of about 2 million people is an industrial distribution center for Northern Brazil even though it is 1250 miles from the Atlantic Ocean. The deep waters of the Amazon River that flows to the Atlantic permits large merchant ships and even ocean-going cruise vessels to traverse their way to and from Manaus. Going west, the waters begin to shallow and the real eco-experience begins.
Tourists clamoring for the unimaginable in flora and fauna can quickly quench their thirst of nature throughout the myriad of rain forests, lowlands, tropical canopies and equatorial wilderness unseen anywhere else in the world. So too can the adventurous trekker, whether it’s paddling down the ever narrowing tributaries while igniting ones senses of sight, sound, smell and touch or hiking to the mysticy of the mountain “Pica da Neblina”. Uneventful it is not. Bring your camera…wide angle preferred…and lots of film to capture a world of memories.
The state of Amazonas is gigantic where the Amazon Forest comprises 92% of the states total area which is so large it is more than the combined countries of France, Italy, Spain and Portugal together. Not only is the Amazon the largest forest on earth, it contains 20% of the total fresh water on the entire planet earth. It is indeed a colossus of the most astonishing beauty.
So Manaus, Brazil is the place to begin your thirst of biodiversity as the perfect entry into the Amazon where you’ll discover the world’s most abundance of plant life, a thousand different species of birds and more than 2,000 species of fish as well as jaguars, alligators and the world’s largest snakes. And a place that is home to over 100,000 Brazilian Indians that still practice the traditions of ancient times past.
Enjoy it your way, in your style. From eco-lodges to first-class hotels built into the beauty of the forest. Come in June and experience “Parintins”, a colorful parade that titled the “world’s biggest jungle party”.
And don’t forget to throw that coin smack where the black and yellow rivers converge. But just being in Manaus and entering the greatest forest on earth…you indeed would be one of the luckiest people on the planet.