Trying to sort out the final leg of our Peruvian trip, we had settled on two ecolodges: the Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica and the Tambopata Research Center. While trying to sort out dates, a friend in Anguilla had mentioned their trip to Peru which, too, had included an Amazonian leg. In lieu of a lodge, they opted for an Amazon River cruise which allowed them to explore different villages and see the Amazon from different points. Naturally, we were intrigued.
Cruising on the Delfin
The recommendation was a boat called the Delfin which now has a sister boat, the Delfin II. Both boats start in Iquitos and travel along the river, stopping at different towns and allowing passengers to jump on skiffs to explore smaller veins of the river. The Delfin I, the smaller of the two boats, takes just 8 passengers on this epic journey, while the Delfin II can accommodate 28 (still an intimate gathering). The accommodations are pristine, the food looks incredible and the cruise includes an educational component to make the entire experience come together a bit more.
Passage isn’t cheap, but considering the scope of the experience (4d/3n), food, day excursions, drinks, tour guides, etc., the nearly $3000 per person seems justified. Pricey yes, but for a once in a lifetime experience, I can’t say it’s excessive. Our other options, the ecolodges, would probably cost upwards of $3000 for the two of us. While this is twice as much, the entire experience spoke to us a bit more; a bit richer and a bit more exploratory in nature.
The downside? The boats take off at calculated intervals throughout the year. There is a boat in July, but it’s just a touch too late to fit into our schedule.
After we’d researched the Delfin, we were sold. We knew that an Amazon River tour was a must and we wanted to find an option that did work into our schedule; something that left 3 – 4 days sooner than the Delfin.
A quickie Google search later, we stumbled upon Aqua Expeditions. As soon as I hit the website, I remembered searching through it last year when the thought of Peru was still just a fantasy. We loved the idea of the river cruise, but were uncertain as to how it would fit into our agenda, if at all.
Our first mission was to check dates. Cha-ching! Dates worked marvelously, with the cruise departure taking place the day after our time in the Sacred Valley was set to come to a close. The cruise itself mirrored the Delfin quite a bit: similar routes, a rather luxe experience and cool daytime exploration options. The specifics differed slightly, but the general gist was mostly the same (cruising, seeing local villages, hiking through the jungle, etc.).
The costs are about the same as well, with options for first or second floor rooms. The Aria, the boat we’re looking at, accommodates about 32 people (16 rooms).
While I was getting amped just thinking about Peru, this particular leg of the trip has made me over the top excited!
Have any of you done an Amazon cruise? Are there any other cruises we’re overlooking?
xo from Anguilla,