I went on this tour with my three friends and our two guides. This was an amazing experience! We spent 5 days canoeing and 4 nights camping on the Urubu River. We went to a few waterfalls and into a bat cave. We also did the piranha fishing. Here’s what you’re probably asking:
1. What about the bugs? Not a problem AT ALL. We arrived from Florida and the mosquitoes in the Amazon aren’t even close to the mosquitoes we have in the US. We were told the water is too acidic for the mosquitoes and this proved to be true. No other bugs bothered us.
2. What about showers and the bathroom? Well it is camping. The river is very refreshing and cool after a long day of paddling. Each campsite also has little offshoot trails where you can find some privacy if you need it.
3. What is the sleeping arrangement? You will sleep in a big cloth hammock with a blanket. This was super comfortable and peaceful. Each hammock will have a tarp over it to protect you from the rain and the open air is nice so it doesn’t get stuffy.
4. What do you eat? The guide is a fantastic chef! He brought a propane burner to cook and made us gourmet meals the entire trip. We ate better at camping than we did in the city. He also prepares meals using native food like plantains, fish, tapioca, fruit juices, and farinha. I am vegetarian and he even accommodated me with hard-boiled eggs each day. The food definitely does not disappoint.
5. What if I don’t paddle much? I had only done light paddleboarding before this trip and I have very little upper body strength. I was able to finish this trip with no problems. The paddling is easy going so you can take your time. The guides will help if you are tired. And at the end of the trip (depending on your type of trip), we were hooked up to a motor and were able to enjoy the river for a few hours without paddling.
6. What about the animals? We saw many beautiful birds (macaws, parrots, vultures, etc). We also saw some cool bugs and reptiles though not too many. We did not see any jaguars but did see some fresh jaguar footprints. We heard howler monkeys at night and little creatures scurrying around. Mostly you will hear the jungle but you won’t see too much. It is very nice.
Lastly, the guides were very helpful during the entire process. They were quick to answer emails and picked us up/dropped us off wherever we needed in Manaus. They also were happy to answer any questions. They made us feel very comfortable and I think this is one of the best private and authentic tours out there!