12 Night cruise departing roundtrip from Cayenne onboard Le Dumont D'Urville.
PONANT is inviting you to enjoy an unforgettable experience along the Amazon River, on a 13-day expedition cruise. Aboard Le Dumont-d’Urville, immerse yourself in the unique atmosphere of this mythical and impressive river in the heart of Brazil, following a brand-new itinerary.
After embarking in Cayenne, in French Guiana, you will sail along the Atlantic coast of Brazil to reach the earth-coloured waters of the Amazon.
You will then sail up the river from east to west, to discover the many treasures it conceals: dense and varied vegetation, tropical fruit, a host of animal species, hamlets, stilt houses, local boats… In spite of the developments brought by modern civilisation, this ecosystem – the only one of its kind in the world – remains the cradle of a protected tropical life, which you will be fortunate to witness.
At the confluence of the Tapajos and Amazon rivers, around Santarem, you might be lucky enough to spot some extraordinary pink river dolphins (also called botos).
Le Dumont-d’Urville will then stop in the beautiful city of Belém, where you will be captivated by the huge open-air market and the walls of Forte do Presépio.
Finally, you will discover the Salvation Islands, famous for their magnificent landscapes and their terrible history: in the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century, these three tracts of land resting in the Atlantic Ocean were penal colonies where convicts, political prisoners and known criminals were exiled and held in prisons which you will be able to visit.
Subject to weather and river conditions. The expedition highlights, encounters with the wildlife and itineraries described above illustrate possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed.
Highlights of this cruise:
Capital of French Guyana located more than 7,000 km from the French mainland, Cayenne offers a harmonious ensemble of monuments, beaches and old creole houses on the eastern side of the South American continent. Between history and modernity, the city is marked by the presence of the former prisons, the vestiges of which can be seen on the Salvation Islands. This port of call will give you the opportunity to visit two museums, the Musée local de la Guyana and the Musée des cultures guyanaises, and learn more about the historic and cultural interests of the region. The Place des Palmistes, with its three soaring Guisanbourg palm trees, is the main square in Cayenne It provides the setting for a variety of events throughout the year.
The Aquiqui River is one of the many tributaries of the Amazon River and offers the opportunity to admire an impressive forest gallery. A veritable ecological corridor, this natural area with its dense and luxuriant vegetation is home to a rich and varied fauna, notably including many aquatic birds. If the water is high enough, you will be able to explore the branches of the river aboard your Zodiac® dinghy. And maybe you will be lucky enough to observe the cocoi herons, roadside hawks and anhingas, as well as monkey squirrels and iguanas.
Discover the Guajará River, a tributary of the Amazon River with fast-flowing waters edged by a few dwellings. The place includes a pasture area for buffaloes and a narrow band of forest from which to observe sloths, green iguanas and myriad birds in stunning colours, such as the toco toucan. With a bit of luck, you might hear the loud cry of howler monkeys, since it can resonate over a radius of several kilometres. The river itself is renowned for being home to the famous pink river dolphin.
ALTER DO CHAO, AMAZONIA
Despite its image as an impenetrable land, the Amazon can be explored, even when one is not a hardened explorer. Aboard your ship, sail this river and journey deep into the heart of this green paradise, the Amazon, the rich exuberance of a wild symphony. From the Andes, the Amazon fights its way between Peru and Colombia to reach Brazil where it achieve its majestic breadth. This exceptional site is an unspoiled and secret refuge for thousands of animals and the handful of tribes who live here, far from any contact with the city, in harmony with nature. Aboard our Zodiac® dinghies, do not miss the daytime and nocturnal excursions to experience the surrounding environment.
400 km upstream of Manaus, discover Parintins, known for its traditional festival, “the Boi Bumba”, celebrating cultural diversity in the Amazon. Over the last three days of June, the city is divided into two groups that compete against each other: the “Caprichosos” in blue and the “Garantidos” in red. Although the choreographies might suggest a reproduction of the Rio Carnival, the themes presented all relate to the Amazon. A performance from this festival will be presented when the ship calls here: an opportunity to admire the beauty of the dancers’ costumes and let the rhythm of the music take you over.
Established at the confluence of the Tapajós and Amazon rivers, the city of Santarém flourished for a time during the rubber boom, then sank into oblivion when the “soft gold” boom eventually went bust. Over the last twenty years or so, the economy of Santarém, which is now Amazonia’s third biggest city after Manaus and Belém, has regained some momentum thanks to soybean cultivation and tourism. Renowned for its forests and especially for the small village of Alter do Chão with its beaches worthy of the Caribbean, Santarém offers a wonderful opportunity to discover the Amazonian ecosystems.
The historical city of Belém stretches along the Bay of Guajar� on the Amazon Delta, at the northernmost tip of Brazil. Its lively waterfront is home to the century-old Ver-o-Peso market and its iconic turreted iron structure, the Mercado de Ferro. Nearby, mango tree-shaded streets lead to the neoclassic Da Paz Theatre, the Baroque cathedral of Sé and Presépio Fort, whose battlements look out over the old town and the bay. The Bosque Rodrigues-Alves Botanical Garden is a fascinating mini Amazonian forest in the middle of the city that was established in the 19th-century.
Lying off the coast of Kourou, an essential element of any trip to Guiana, the Islands of Salvation were known as the "Islands of the Devil" because of the strong sea currents that made access to them perilous. Once infamous for being the site of a jail with very harsh conditions of detention, where Alfred Dreyfus was exiled, today they are a peaceful place where coconut palms cast shade over the crystal-clear waters. During your cruise, we invite you to make a timeless journey to visit the many remains of the prison that are still visible, including cells and the abandoned hospital.
Please note, while prices and inclusions are accurate at time of loading they are subject to change due to changes in cruise line policies and pricing and due to currency fluctuations. Currency surcharges may apply. Please check details of price and inclusions at time of booking.