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What to do in Manaos, Brasil

Manaus is the Amazon’s largest city, an incongruous pocket of urbanity in the middle of the jungle and a major port for ocean vessels that’s 1500km from the ocean. Its primary tourist attractions, in addition to its colonial buildings, are the many eco-tour options by boat and to lodges in the nearby tropical rain forests. Here are some of them:

The Teatro Amazonas: It is an opera house, the location of the annual Festival Amazonas de Ópera and the home of the Amazonas Philharmonic Orchestra which regularly rehearses and performs at the Amazon Theater along with choirs, musical concerts and other performances.

The theatre was built in the 19th century during Manaus’ golden era, and locals have managed to preserve its beautiful French architecture for all these years.

The streets surrounding the Opera House were constructed with a special blend of rubber, sand and clay in order to dampen the noise of late arriving carriages, so as not to interrupt the voices of Europe’s best sopranos.

Encontro das Aguas: The city of Manaus lies at the confluence of two great rivers, the Solimões and the Black. Although borders on water are typically impossible to see, that is not the case in Manaus. Because of the different colors of the two rivers, it's possible to see precisely where they meet, which is what makes the "Meeting of Waters."

You might see this from the air as you fly into the city, but boat trips into the mingling waters are among the most popular trips from Manaus. A boat trip is also the best way to see three different areas that are traversed by a complicated network of rivers, channels, and lakes: the Rio Negro area, the Solimões area, and the Amazon.

Presidente Figueiredo Waterfalls: See the Sanctuary and Iracema waterfalls on this day trip to the area surrounding Presidente Figueiredo, a small town north of Manaus. Ypu will enjoy the beauty of the Amazon Rainforest on the drive, and learn about the native wildlife and plants from your local guide as you admire the waterfalls and explore the area around the Urubui River. There’s also the opporunity to partake in some rafting, if you dare.

Anavilhanas National Park: One of the largest river archipelagos in the world is located in Rio Negro, 100 km away from Manaus, near the municipality of Novo Airão: Anavilhanas. Around 400 islands form a natural maze and one of the most beautiful examples of Amazon’s natural landscapes.

The Anavilhanas National Park was created to preserve the archipelago, which is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The park has several forest formations, such as tropical rain forest, flooded forest, campinarana, caatinga-gapó and chavascal vegetation, as well as river and lake ecosystems.

You will be able to visit the floating of the river dolphins, enjoy the rich Amazonian flora and fauna, take boat trips and land trails, swim in the waters of Rio Negro, meet traditional riverside communities, and see the beautiful craftsmanship of Novo Airão

Stay at a Jungle Lodge: Lying at the heart of the Amazon rainforest means that Manaus is entirely surrounded by jungle. There are dozens of lodges here, mostly reachable by boat, to suit all tastes and budgets with accommodation ranging from rustic fan-cooled huts to luxurious air-conditioned chalets. Activities at jungle lodges include piranha fishing, jungle treks, night walks, canoeing through verdant creeks and bird spotting – to name a few.

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