Amazon River

Blog posts about International Expeditions' Amazon River cruises
October 22, 2010

An Amazon Shaman Experience

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We found the following story about one man's encounter with a shaman deep in the Amazon River Basin fascinating. Although not near as "off the grid" as this man's singular journey, day 6 of our own Amazon River trip includes a visit to a well-respected Amazon village shaman, and is always considered a highlight by guests.

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International Expeditions' Amazon mini water treatment plants in the remote villages of San Jose de Paranapura, Irlanda and Santa Teresa, Peru are already making a big impact on the health of villagers! According to Dr. Linnea Smith, who operates the Amazon Medical Clinic, she is treating far fewer cases of intestinal parasites and common diarrhea now that the water treatment plants are providing clean drinking water.

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Ecuador signed a recent deal with the United Nations not to exploit its oil-rich Amazon reserves. This deal sets up a trust fund by wealthy countries that will be worth half the expected earnings from the potential sale of oil. This should help to protect some 675 sq miles of the Amazon. This is an area that is home to indigenous tribes, thousands of species of trees and, of course, nearly 1 billion barrels of crude oil.

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IE’s pioneering voyage on the Amazon River is truly an in-depth adventure…but it’s also tons of fun! Amazon Expedition Leader Hernando shares scenes of wonder, enchantment and excitement in this video from an August journey aboard our Amazon River cruiser.

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A new species of armoured catfish that eats wood with spoon-shaped teeth has been discovered in a remote area of the Amazonian jungle in Peru.

Scientists from the US National Science Foundation made the discovery during an expedition last month to a national park in the Alto Purus area of northeastern Peru.

The fish, which reaches 70cm long (2ft 3 ins), have evolved "spoon-shaped teeth" specialised in scraping tree logs that fall into the river waters.

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Earlier this week on the International Expeditions Facebook page, a guest joining our Amazon cruise asked for advice on packing. As always, our expert expedition leader, Jorge Salas, came through with a great list of essentials. Check out Jorge's Amazon packing list below, and let us know if you have other suggestions.

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James Cameron is returning to Brazil to film a 3D movie highlighting the plight of the indigenous people who will be uprooted by the construction of a dam on the Amazon river.

The director has been fighting to ban the Belo Monte hydroelectric plant from being built on the Xingu River, an Amazon tributary, but his protests failed to keep President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva from approving plans last week.

Now Cameron is planning to show his support for the local tribes by shooting a movie about their lives.

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Notes on the back of a 400-year-old letter have revealed a previously unknown language once spoken by indigenous peoples of northern Peru, an archaeologist says.

Penned by an unknown Spanish author and lost for four centuries, the battered piece of paper was pulled from the ruins of an ancient Spanish colonial church in 2008.

But a team of scientists and linguists has only recently revealed the importance of the words written on the flip side of the letter.

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The Amazon Medical Project supports the Yanamono Medical Clinic in the remote Amazon basin of northeastern Peru by providing primary care, involving locally trained people and encouraging preventative medicine. The clinic was founded in 1990 by Dr. Linnea J. Smith, M.D., who took her first Amazon rainforest tour with IE.

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This is the fifth installment in a series by Wayne Zanardelli, an IE guest who generously shared notes from his recent Amazon adventure aboard La Amatista.

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