Home to incredible displays of biodiversity and natural beauty, it’s time to experience the Amazon for real and not while watching the green landscape unfold before you in a documentary or a movie. With endless expanses of jungle environment the Amazon houses innumerable species of wildlife in one of the world’s most remote and unspoiled habitats.
Brazil has the largest portion of the Amazon and considering it is the largest country in Latin America, it is startling to think that the Amazon makes up more than 60% of its total area.
One of the main reasons people travel to the Amazon is to explore its biodiversity. It is therefore important to consider the seasonal conditions to decide when’s the best time to travel to the Brazilian Amazon in relation to your own personal likes and interests.
♦ Rainy Season (November – May)
If you think that exploring the Amazon which has 33% of the world’s wildlife within in isn’t impressive enough, just wait until you experience the Amazon Rainforest rainfall. Impressive downpours over the jungle canopy, floods the ground below further extending the river system and Amazon waterways. The rainy season that runs from January to June is interspersed with brief periods of sunshine that glisten in the water of the flooded forests.
Due to the high water levels navigating the flooded tributaries and forests which is one of the highlights of traveling to the Amazon becomes more accessible and otherwise unreachable destinations can be explored.
The advantage of traveling to the Brazilian Amazon during the rainy season is traveling to the wetlands for wildlife spotting and in spite of the ever-present humidity; the cooler temperatures can make your experience slightly more comfortable. With plenty of rainfall, the rainy season sees the rainforest in its most colorful as plants fruit and flower. This has the added attraction of drawing in an assortment of fruit eating animals and birds from monkeys to toucans.
♦ Dry Season (June – October)
The Brazilian Amazon dry season that goes from July to December is where you’ll find the rainforest steaming creating a unique sticky environment that adds to your Amazon experience. Although called the dry season, it is in fact just a slightly less wet season meaning the intermittent showers will keep you refreshed.
Even though the increase in heat and decrease in precipitation means that the previously flooded lakes, rivers and forest begin to recede; what’s left behind is a number of incredible hiking trails and white sandy beaches.
One of the main advantages of traveling to the Brazilian Amazon during the dry season is that it is the ideal time to go hiking to explore the environment and fishing in the rainforest. With lower water levels, caiman and giant river turtles can be seen basking in the evening sun on the newly formed banks of the river as the Amazon wildlife becomes more concentrated near to the receding water source. The reduced river levels means you will do well not to catch a piranha while fishing in the Amazon waters and with fish and caiman using the dry season to nest and spawn, the Amazon springs to life.
♦ Festival Folclórico do Amazonas (annually in June)
Aside from letting the season decide when to travel to the Brazilian Amazon, if you are looking for a unique Amazon experience, they don’t come as authentic as the Manaus Festival Folclórico do Amazonas (Amazonas Folklore Festival).
The Brazilian city of Manaus which is surrounded by the verdant rainforest has a number of traditional Amazon festivals to experience however, non are perhaps as spectacular as its Folkloric Festival that takes place every year in June.
Consisting of a huge display and range of folk dancing and music from the surrounding Amazon region, the Festival culminates with the impressive Procissão Fluvial de São Pedro (San Pedro River Procession). This is where literally hundreds of riverboats set sail along the Rio Negro to honor the patron saint of fisherman and which is an unmissable display and event.