• Explore the Marañón, the Ucayali, and the Puinahua
  • See the rare pink dolphin
  • Visit Peruvian Amazon River
  • Amazing opportunities to view plant and animal life

During this luxurious Amazon River cruise aboard the M/V Aria you will explore winding jungle creeks by motorized skiff and stop at remote villages to search for local crafts. Your journey through the region will take you along three powerful Amazon tributaries: the Marañón, the Ucayali, and the Puinahua as well as several hidden black water lakes in both high water and Low water season. On the river, you will experience the world as it was at the very beginning of time, when wildlife was rich and abundant, when trees grew tall and flowers bloomed everywhere. In this glorious environment, parrots and macaws perch in trees, fuzzy howler monkeys leap from branch to branch, and per-historic looking caiman swim by. You will see the rare pink dolphin arc through the water and have a chance to photograph the giant Victoria Regia water lilies.

There are two main seasons to be aware of when visiting the Peruvian Amazon River: a high water season (December through May) and a low water season (June through November). Traveling to Peru in either season offers rich rewards, fabulous sites, and amazing opportunities to view plant and animal life.

Trip Description

The Aria Amazon River cruise is offered as either an 8-day, 5-day or 4-day cruise departing Fridays and Mondays to provide an Amazon experience that is best for you. View the Aria’s detailed 5-day High Water itinerary by clicking the Itinerary tab. Scroll down from there to the Alternative Itinerary trip notes to view the other routes in brief. Note the itineraries are subject to change slightly to accommodate the changes in water levels for the different seasons.

Cities & Attractions
Flights & Transport
  • Only ground transport
Rivers & Seas
  • Amazon River
Ship Name
  • Aria

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4.9 Guide
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5.0 Lodging
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4.9 Meals
Aria Amazon River Cruise

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Day 1: Iquitos to Amazon River

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: M/V Aria

The Aria Amazon River cruise begins in Iquitos, Peru. Upon Arrival to Iquitos, board an air-conditioned bus for your journey to the river and board the M/V Aria. Participate in a short safety drill and briefing on the Upper Deck before dinner. Afterwards, perhaps enjoy a nightcap on the Upper Deck, under the stars, before retiring.

Day 2: Amazon River & Yarapa River

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation:  M/V Aria

Catch your first glimpse of the majestic Amazon River and a tasty breakfast as you watch the sun rise over this green world filled with wonderful wildlife. Explore the Yacapana Isles “the Isle of the Iguana”. Pass very close the islands aboard the launches, giving you an opportunity to take good photos of the flora and fauna that we are able to observe along our route. Enjoy the unique opportunity to go fishing for the infamous piranhas with our naturalists before returning to the M/V Aria for lunch.

Next we head to the Yarapa River. As the sun sets, you will have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see and photograph both gray and pink freshwater dolphins. The people of the Amazon believe that these dolphins turn into humans to steal handsome men or pretty women from their villages during celebrations. Once the sun sets and the jungle is dark, begin our search for caiman, frogs, and different kinds of nightlife. Return to the boat and before dining, we recommend drinking a pisco sour as an aperitif on the top deck, while watching the sunset.

Day 3: Yanallpa River & Ucayali River

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: M/V Aria

Start with an early breakfast to prepare for our Jungle Walk to Magdalena - a small community of just ten families. After you meet the people, including lots of lively and curious children, your naturalist guides will lead you through the jungle to a beautiful lake that is home to the world famous Victoria Regia giant water lily. Have your cameras ready to capture this once-in-a-lifetime sight. Return to Aria for lunch and a siesta.

Later this afternoon, search for Monkeys and Dolphins; you will be able to appreciate the different types of freshwater dolphin, including the rare pink dolphins found along the Ucayali River. We recommend that you bring your binoculars as there will also be opportunities to observe some species of birds, among which the macaws stand out, as well as a spectacular sundown.

Day 4: Amazon, Pacaya Samiria & Nauta Caño

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: M/V Aria

This morning, the M/V Aria cruises the edges of the vast Pacaya-Samiria Reserve, a flooded forest covering five million acres at the headwaters of the Amazon basin. Rise early and be on your skiffs to view one of the great spectacles of the Southern Hemisphere: the sun rising over the birthplace of the Amazon River. Next travel by skiff to Puerto Prado native village, to get to know the hospitable Cocama Indians. They will share their culture, traditions, and folklore with you, and you will have the opportunity to purchase some of their delightful folk art and crafts.

After lunch our afternoon Excursion is to Nauta Caño known as the mirrored forest, due to its glistening black water lagoons. Here you will enjoy observing different species, such as: toucans, parrots, macaws, iguanas, and more. On the way back to the M/V Aria you will see a glorious sunset reflected in the waters of the mirrored forest.

Day 5: Marañon River & Choroyacu River

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: M/V Aria

This morning board the skiffs to explore part of the vast Amazon flooded forest. Your guides will tell you about the rainforest and its dynamic life, as we explore what scientists call a “gallery forest,” because of its narrow vegetation, creating a tunnel of leaves. As we float through this tunnel, it is easy to spot parrots, macaws, and fluffy monk saki monkeys, very close to the skiff. Return to the M/V Aria for lunch.

This afternoon take a Jungle Walk and Village Visit. On this walk, your guides will introduce you to native people doing subsistence farming, and will tell you how they learned to cultivate wild plants and trees to earn farm income. As your adventure takes you deep into the primary forest, your guides will also show you the wealth of fruit trees and medicinal plants hidden in the jungle – and will reveal some of the plants’ secrets.

Day 6: Tacsha River, Pacaya Samiria & San Martin de Tipishca

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: M/V Aria

Today you can choose between two options: 1. A full-day excursion to Primary forest with a Picnic Lunch or 2. A guided Jungle Walk, Siesta, Monkey and Dolphin Expedition.

Option 1: In the morning board your skiff to go deep into the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve, along the Samiria River. Along the route, have the opportunity to see various species of monkey, such as howler monkeys, squirrel monkeys, saddleback tamarin monkeys and many bird species such as blue, yellow and scarlet macaws as well as toucans and some species of river hawks. Arrive at the PV2 Tacsha watchpost, to follow a path deep into the rainforest. Enjoy a generous picnic lunch, before begining our journey back to our vessel.

Option 2: In the morning your Naturalist Guide will tell you all about sustainable resource management projects in Amazonia, and will take you to one of these projects, where villagers are planting palms to obtain oil. Your Guide may also show you the artificial nests created on the sand to protect turtle eggs. Next, travel deep into the jungle, to encounter wildlife and learn first-hand about the important medicinal value of many jungle plants. See the famous Kapok Trees (ceiba pentandra), the tallest trees in the Amazon Basin. Return to Aria for lunch and a Siesta. The afternoon will be spent with a Caiman Expedition. Perhaps you will catch a glimpse of tamarins and dusky titi monkeys, as well as pigmy marmoset monkeys. Watch for alligators, and keep your binoculars at the ready, as you are likely to see more than 200 species of birds. As the sun sets and our searchlight comes on, keep your eyes out for caimans, tree boas, tarantulas, and frogs.

Day 7: Tahuayo, Lake Charo

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: M/V Aria

Back on the river as the sun rises, witness a treasure trove of wildlife, including parrots, macaws, toucans, and many kinds of monkeys—as well as some “surprise” species that you have never seen before. Enjoy a “bag breakfast” of light sandwiches and fresh juice near a popular dolphin feeding spot. Return to the M/V Aria and sail back down the river toward Iquitos while enjoying lunch.

This evening you will board our comfortable launch and navigate from the Amazon River through the Huaysi Canal to explore the dark waters of the Tahuayo River. Lifejackets, ponchos, rubber boots and freshwater will be available on our launches. As we navigate along the Tahuayo River, observe fishermen paddling in their canoes. Keep your binoculars handy to see the abundant wildlife: sparrows, hawks, monkeys and sloths will be sharing this marvellous location with us. After our arrival at Lake Charo, you will be using the fishing gear to fish for piranhas and other specious. While you fish, our nature guides will tell you the history of the lake and its residents. Return to the M/V Aria for briefing in the Top Lounge and a recap of itinerary and sightings before a delicious Farewell Dinner.

Day 8: Depart Amazon River, Iquitos

Meals: Breakfast

The excursions today depend on the level of the river. Weather and time permitting, this will be the last opportunity to see how people live along the Amazon—by floating in skiffs through the lively riverside community of Belen, in Iquitos. Here, where the houses and shops actually float on the river during some months, see the bustling food market for the entire Peruvian Amazon. All local inhabitants throughout the region sell and purchase goods here. Return to the M/V Aria to finish packing and have a Light Lunch.

Your afternoon in the remote city of Iquitos, accessible only by river or air, will not disappoint. This bustling town, complete with a house built by Gustave Eiffel, was once a rich center of the rubber industry. Before heading to the airport, visit the Manatee Rescue Center, where biologists and volunteers care for endangered Amazon manatees that conservation authorities have seized from local people, including fishermen. Biologists will give a presentation about the project and its efforts to help these helpless mammals. You will also see how the manatees are cared for and are prepared for re-introduction into their natural habitat. Finally, stop at the San Juan Amazonian Indian Market, for a last chance to shop for local crafts before check in at Iquitos International Airport.

Dates & Pricing
Checking price

Price From

$ 3,480

Price Per Day:

$ 435 per day
  • Deposit Price: $ 400

Departs weekly:

4 Day Friday-Monday | 5 Day Monday-Friday | 8 Day Friday-Friday

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.
Ship Name


Ship Stats


  • 32 guests
  • Year Built: 2011
  • 24 crew members
  • Length: 147 feet
  • Beam: 29.5 feet
  • Draft: 5 feet
  • Cruising Speed: 12 knots

The 16-suite M/V Aria was custom built by Peruvian architect Jordi Puig to offer an extraordinary level of comfort on the Peruvian Amazon. Launched in April 2011 to the highest standards of modern small ship cruise lines, Aria is fully air conditioned throughout and all her suites are comparable to a 5-star hotel with private baths, luxury toiletries and fine linen bedding. From the gourmet Peruvian cuisine to the crystal and china service at dinner, the amenities onboard the M/V Aria will treat you to an intimate but luxurious Amazon River cruise.

Ship Description

The M/V Aria’s 16 oversized suites feature en suite sitting areas and generous outward-facing picture-windows with panoramic Amazon River views. All cabins have twin beds that are convertible to California king-size beds. Each of the handsomely decorated, air-conditioned cruise ship suites measure 250 square feet. Four of these suites can be interconnected, to cater to families. All suites are decorated to create the feeling of a luxury lodge on the Amazon Rive and contain a private bath, complete with all necessities, plus a shower that has hot water around the clock, a hairdryer and a basket of luxury toiletries. The fine Peruvian linens, with a thread count in the hundreds, sooth you to sleep with a sense of elegant luxury. And there is an internal communication system, to facilitate announcements. All cruise ship cabins also have safe deposit boxes for your valuables with instructions for their use.

Deck & Cabin Plans

Aria Deck Plan

Aria Deck Plan

First Deck

8 Design Suites (101-108) are on the First Deck, measuring 250 square feet. All cabins have twin beds that are convertible to California king-size beds. All suites face outside, with large panoramic windows. Four of the First Deck suites are interconnecting for families: 103 can connect to 105, and 104 to 106.

Second Deck

8 Design Suites (201-208) are on the Second Deck, measuring 250 square feet. All cabins have twin beds that are convertible to California king-size beds. All suites face outside, with large panoramic windows.

Trip Includes
  • Overnight accommodations aboard the M/V Aria
  • All meals while cruising
  • All excursions
  • Beverages (non-alcoholic, selected wines and beer)
  • Group transfers to/from vessel when arriving and departing on recommended flights
  • Pacaya Samiria entrance fee
Trip Excludes
  • Airfare
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Airport departure tax
  • Guide and crew gratuities
  • Private transfers to/from vessel
  • Boutique purchases
Optional Activities

Machu Picchu Explorer From $1,645; 5 days

Travel to Peru and the most spectacular archaeological monument in South America, the ancient Inca site of Machu Picchu. Our Machu Picchu Explorer includes Cusco, the Urubamba Valley and upscale accommodations in Peru. Maximize your time at Machu Picchu with an overnight in Aguas Calientes at the foot of the ruins.

Puno & Lake Titicaca From $375; 3 days

Extend you Peru and Machu Picchu journey to include Puno and Lake Titicaca. Visit the famous floating reed islands. Enjoy cultural immersion at 13,120 feet on the highest navigable lake in the world.

Meals Included:

7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches and 7 Dinners

Flights & Transport
Only ground transport
Group Size:
Intimate Group - 12 max
Start City
End City
Cancellation Policy:

In order to confirm this trip, a deposit of $400 per person is required at the time of booking. A Reservation Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travellers. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days before the departure date. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Cancellations are subject to the following per-person fees, based on number of days prior to departure:

Up to 121 days - $200 service charge

120 to 91 days - deposit non-refundable

90 to 0 days - 100% of total trip cost

Age Notes

Families & Children

7 year old age minimum. Children under 12 years old will receive a 20% discount. Third person being a child under 12 years old sleeping on sofa bed pays $500 in 2016.

Min. Age: 7

Additional Information:

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. You must purchase your travel insurance policy within 21 days of booking your trip for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions.

Room Configuration

The M/V Aria offers single occupancy at an additional 25% of the adult rate. Third person sleeping on sofa bed will receive a 20% discount.

Itinerary Notes

The itinerary is subject to change slightly to accommodate changes in the water levels during the different seasons. We may occasionally alter itineraries slightly for safety, or to take advantage of weather, wildlife, and unplanned discoveries. Our ability to be flexible makes our style of cruising unique.

Trip Level 1:


Our level one trips are designed for travelers interested in lodge and hotel accommodations combined with mild activities, plenty of flexibility and options for more rigorous activity. Expect two to four hours of activity each day over straightforward terrain. Travelers should be comfortable hiking or walking 3-5 miles per day. Other level one activities include snorkeling or sea kayaking sheltered waters and river rafting class I-II water. Expedition Cruising aboard small ships and yachts is level one and may include fun and easy activities such as hiking, snorkeling and kayaking. Enjoying a relaxed pace with a focus on nature, culture and history is often a priority for those who choose this trip level.

Trip ID#: ariamaadv

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