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A day on an Amazon cruise

 

I had been to the Peruvian Amazon a few times, but until recently I’d only ever stayed in a lodge. I had expectations that taking a cruise on the Amazon would be a more luxurious and more relaxing experience, with more time sipping pisco sours in the bar and chilling out in the Jacuzzi, but with less time to actually see the wildlife that I go to the Amazon to see. I quickly discovered on my cruise aboard the Delfin that I needn’t have worried. While there was time to enjoy the luxuries of my cruise boat, the days were far more packed with experiences than I had expected.

Our expert local guide knew the trails incredibly well.

When I met my guide Ericson in Iquitos, he explained that the Delfin has a reputation for keeping its passengers busy. It certainly doesn’t skimp on the luxuries, but it keeps the day full of activities. Passengers can choose to do as much or as little as they want. I was determined to do as much as possible, and after boarding my cruise I signed up to everything I could. 24 hours later, I realised just how busy the days could be.

My cabin on board the Delfin was wonderful, far surpassing the quality of any of the Amazon lodges I had stayed in, but I didn’t have long after I boarded to enjoy the luxuries onboard. The boat set sail along the Maranon River even before our cruise briefing began in the bar, and by the time we had enjoyed a welcome pisco sour and learnt about the activities for the next few days, we were mooring up on the banks of the river and it was time to head out to see the wildlife.

After just an hour onboard, I was back onshore beginning the exploration of the dense primary rainforest and any concerns I had about the amount of wildlife I would see taking a cruise were quickly quashed. Our expert local guide knew the trails incredibly well, and our little group saw anacondas, sloths, tarantulas and even a rare and fearsome bushmaster snake.

By the time I returned to the boat for a quick shower and an excellent dinner, I was very happy with how the day had gone, but there was still time for more. I could not resist the opportunity to join a night boat ride, observing nocturnal birds, frogs and caimans in the guide’s light. By the time I finally got back to my cabin after a long day, I was ready for bed and had no trouble sleeping in my air-conditioned cabin.

 

The wildlife in the Amazon gets up early, and it was no different for those of use staying onboard the Delfin.

After watching the sunrise from the deck of the boat, it was time to set off on an early morning skiff ride through the creeks that feed into the Maranon River. Macaws and toucans flew overhead while pink river dolphins played in the water.

 

While we explored, the boat continued its journey upstream, and we caught up to it in our fast skiffs for a delicious breakfast before heading out again. By now the day had warmed up and the wildlife was quietening down, so we cooled off with a dip in the river, trying to forget about the piranhas and caimans that inhabit the dark waters of the Amazon. Back onboard, there was no point changing out of my wet swimwear, as I had signed up for a morning kayaking trip. Heading back upstream on the skiff, I hopped into my kayak and began the paddle back to the Delfin, pausing to watch the birdlife flitting between the trees that lined the river shore. I was back just in time to have a quick shower and change of clothes before a well-earned lunch.

I had been on the Delfin for just 24 hours and it had been non-stop. Pleased with the amount I had already seen and done, and confident about how much wildlife I was going to see in the remaining time onboard, it was time to finally unwind and have another pisco sour and a siesta.

If you’d like to experience Delfin’s Relais & Chauteux style in one of the most biologically diverse places on earth, contact us – we’d love to help you plan your own Peruvian Amazon adventure!

 

 

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Paul Cook

Being a former architect, Paul takes an avid interest in the buildings of the areas he specialises in, particularly the minarets! He has been in the travel industry a long time, and covers South America, Asia and the Middle East for us. He's generous with his considerable knowledge.