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We spent 6 days travelling up the Rio Amazonas from the mouth of the river in Belem, to the center of the Amazon Bason in Manaus.  We travelled on one of the many "Gaiolas" or "Bird Cages" that transport the native population and cargo to the small cities and villages.  All passengers sleep in hammocks, and some of the larger boats have a few cabins.



Our wooden princess:  100' L x 15' W

- Lower Deck:  Additional cargo (motos up front), and dining area at rear
- Middle Deck: Cabins, Hammocks for deck  passengers, & pilothouse
- Upper Deck:  Bar and common area (we had our hammock up front)

Loading the bikes

The bikes were placed out of the way

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At the dock in Oriximina, the D'jard Vieira is far larger then the surrounding boats

Using the Fireman Drill:
sliding the cases across the dock

Passengers wait to board in Obidos


Boat Facilities

Hammock Sleeping Space

Our Cabin - Camarote #6
airconditioned, but no toilet

The Kitchen






El Capitan


River Views

View up the river

A more open view

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Later in the day

The Meeting of the Waters in Santarem:  The green-blue Tapajos meets the brown-yellow Amzon River

A typical house along the river

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A very small village, including church

A typical cattle station

A small cemetary

The Nelia Correa on it's way down to Belem

Smaller river boat -- more typical for 1-3 day journeys

A local taxi

Caravan -- the lead boat is pulling all the others

You've heard the Amazon Forest is being cut down, these were common sites along the river...



Natives along the river

Woman and children wait at the water's edge for offerings to be thrown from the large boats

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Young locals tie alongside, board, and try to sell us fruit and/or vegetables.  The captain maintains his speed of 15km/h, and the youngsters must hook onto our boat as we cruise past.



Hanging Out

Passing time on the upper deck

Jorge prepares to take portraits of the locals

Father Freddy from the boat takes us on a personal tour of his church in Santarem

In Santarem, Father Freddy and Edson took us to the museum/home of Dica Frazao where the internationally famous (now 82-yrs old) artisan shows us outfits worn by kings, queens, and even the Pope.  She uses only natural fibers: Tucum straw, patchouli root, buriti, mallow, juste, and birds' feathers.  It was truly amazing!

With a 4-hour stop in Obidos, several of us went to investigate the local bar scene

Francisco, Vao de Cilo, Jorge, Erin, Chris, and Lorenzo


The Sun

Early morning and the sun is breaking through

Sunset after a late dinner

Sunset on the upper deck

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Our trip along the Rio Amazonas was not the exotic adventure we imagined from several months before. It is, however, a very interesting journey meeting all sorts of people and experiencing life along the river. If you are looking for a very relaxing experience, don't mind very basic facilities, and enjoy meeting friendly locals (not those whose lives depend on tourism), we would highly recommend this trip. 

To book your trip on the D'jard Vieira, contact the Nonave Lines
(091) 212-8424 -- or in Belem 248-7188; Manaus 621-1800


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