Overview

Probably the best recognised, most romantic and exotic river in the world, the Amazon runs - fed by its tributaries - from its modest source in the Andes down to the Atlantic Ocean in northern Brazil. The majority of this vast basin, 7 million sq.km, an area almost as big as Australia, is blanketed in primary rainforest, and includes territory from nine nations: Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, French Guiana and Suriname. Throughout, the biodiversity is astounding, with one in 10 of every natural species to be found.

Much of the region is unsullied wilderness, home only to remote or undiscovered tribes. There are virtually no roads, few airstrips, only a handful of large river ports. Elsewhere, human society clings to the banks of rivers and streams, surviving on subsistence agriculture, stock-rearing and fishing. Ambitious developments in the past and present - the rubber boom, large scale logging, Fordlândia, soya - have met with varying degrees of success, and nowadays large tracts of the forest are under threat.

The Amazon rainforest is not uniform jungle; different species thrive in different areas, and visiting the Amazon region in one country can contrast notably from the next. But the local people welcome visitors, and recognise the protection that sustainable tourism offers them.

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Holidays The Amazon

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Where to go when - our guide to The Amazon

Sunset in the Amazon

The weather in The Amazon is wide and varied

The lush, tangled Amazon rainforest stretches out across eight countries- Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana- and shelters a vast array of beautiful, fragile species. Elusive, shy creatures such as jaguars, ocelots and tapirs can be difficult to spot, but capybaras, caimans, spider monkeys and colourful birds are plentiful. Wherever you visit, be that Bolivia’s Madidi National Park, Colombia’s quaint eco-village Puerto Nariño or Brazil’s elegant city Manaus, there tend to be only two main seasons. From roughly June - November is the dry season, with scorching temperatures, clearer skies and more easily accessible hiking trails. The wet season from December - May ushers in heavy rains which flood many parts of the rainforest, meaning you can explore by canoe and spot animals along the way.

View our The Amazon weather guide

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    Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.

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    Charlotte's fascination with Latin America began with a family holiday to Belize. She went on to study Spanish in school and at university before spending a year living in Santiago, Chile.

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    Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia and beyond to Antarctica.

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