Saturday, December 26, 2009

Our Cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Manaus Brazil on the AMAZON RIVER

On November 25, 2009 we departed from Fort Lauderdale on our 26 day cruise to the Amazon.
Below is our ship the Prisendam - Holland America. It's one of the smaller ships in the Line with only 744 passengers. It averaged 60,000 Liters of fuel a day and 350,000 Liters of Water consumed each day.
The Prinsendam is the smaller of the two ships

ahh... the sunsets

We clean up pretty nicely!

November 28 - our first stop was Santo Domingo, Dominican. A very pretty and clean island.

the Botanical Gardens

Nov 30 - Aruba. this was the most disappointing island of all our stops. We went on a tour and saw the beaches (which were beautiful), the 1 cow of 4 that they have on the island, a lot of cactus and rocks. We did get over to the rough side of the island which was very pretty.

Rob took a picture of our shadows

down town Oranjestad, Aruba

Dec 2 St. Georges Grenada ...another very beautiful Island

Dec 4 - Devil's Island, French Guiana. This was the hottest place I have ever been. It is the island that held a prison and is now a tourist stop. It is where Henri Charriere - Papillon - was sentenced to spend his time.

the current residents of the island

just visiting....

Dec 5, 2009. We are 140 nautical mile from the Amazon River. We are sailing over a sand barge from all of the silt pushed out to sea from the River and can only go about 10 knots. You can clearly see the ocean's blue water and the mucky Amazon River. We won't see clear blue water again for 8 days!
The river is 4,195 miles in length, has 15,000 known tributaries (4 are over 1000 mi long) pumps 46,000 gallons PER SECOND at the rivers mouth and can be 1 to 35 miles wide in places.

along the banks of the river

Dec 6 Macapa Brazil. The EQUATOR......

photo of "Monumento Marco Zero"

Now the real thing. One foot in the Northern Hemisphere and 1 foot in the Southern Hemisphere.

we went on a tour and saw these Burial Chambers which are anatomically correct
now thats a car flag! - Brazil was playing in the finals the day we arrived.

Artisian center

along the River

We are travelling in the middle of the river. Look how wide it is!

Dec 7, 2009 Santarem, Brazil
Look closely inside of this boat and see all the hammocks. The locals use these ferries to travel the river, some trips as long as 7 days
Taken beside our ship .... you can see the muddy Amazon and the Rio Tapajos meeting.

Dec 9, 2009 Manaus, Brazil. This is as far up the river a large freighter or cruise ship can go. Manaus has over 1 million people. The Amazon and Rio Negro meet here and the contrast is stiking with the mud of the Amazon and the black of the Rio Negro.
Manaus Opera House - built 1896, all of the material was shipped from Europe to build this during the Rubber Boom.
the ceiling

the square in front of the Opera House

These homes are in the city on the rivers edge and are build on stilts. When the rains come the river can rise and flood the first floor of the houses

the market


the meeting of the waters

We stopped on our day trip to see the water lillies, the walk to the lake was 20 minute in the pouring rain and mud. The children started a little business of washing the gringos shoes before they got back on to the tour boat.

Dec 17 Roseau, Dominica

Dec 18, 2009 St Thomas, US Virgin Islands

and back to Fort Lauderdale and then to Panama