Visiting the Brazilian Amazon is on many travel bucket lists, and there are a number of permanent mid-range and luxury lodges that offer experiences to explore this vast region. For a truly immersive experience, guests may want to consider the exclusivity of pop-up glamping. Picture being on a beach on the Rio Negro, accessible only by seaplane or boat, where you can immerse in one of the most remote and beautiful landscapes in the world, near São Gabriel da Cachoeira, a region known as 'o Cabeça do Cachorro'. 90% of the population in the São Gabriel da Cachoe region is comprised of 430 settlements that are home to 35,000 indigenous people of 23 different ethnic groups. You will have the opportunity to meet families from the Baré, Baniwa, Tukano, Wanano, Cubeu, Siriano and Desana indigenous ethnic groups, who keep the essential and unique traditions of the Amazon alive.
The camp, available on an exclusive basis, can accommodate as few as 2 guests and as many as 16 in 4 stand-up, African style luxury tents measuring 25 square meters (270 sq feet), sleeping up to four guests, each with a private bathroom and shower. This open air “hotel” includes a kitchen, dining, and lounge area, with a dedicated staff of naturalists, a chef, and housekeeping staff.
The expedition concentrates on the environment, surrounding flora and fauna and interaction with indigenous communities to learn about their culture, food, clothing, and language. Guests have the opportunity to learn about the impressive variety of medicinal plants used to cure a number of ailments, visit a family hut, participate in workshops such as basket weaving, and practice ancient fishing techniques.
Highlights include discovering traditional methods used to produce artisanal products and indigenous handicrafts made from the abundance of raw and natural materials available. The region has been able to remain largely autonomous without being affected by the different waves of colonization due to these natural resources, and the strong commitment of villagers to keep their indigenous roots alive.
At camp you will enjoy a variety of local dishes created by a French-Amazonian chef whose culinary style combines traditional French food with Amazonian cuisine, including fresh fish, vegetables and fruits unique to São Gabriel da Cachoeira.
This program requires a moderate degree of physical fitness, as much of the wildlife viewing is done on foot, involving hiking on nature trails through the rainforest. It is recommended that you be able to walk in high humidity on uneven ground with overgrown roots in order to participate in all suggested excursions. Hiking on muddy trails or standing water may be necessary at times.
A recommended trip would be 4-5 days during the months from July-January, the typical “dry” season” where the rains are less intense.
Coupled with the excitement of an urban experience in Rio de Janeiro, adding 4-5 days for discovery of jaguars and other unique flora and fauna in the Pantanal (blog August 2, 2024), the extension of the glamping experience in the Amazon would make for an ideal 11–12-day introduction to Brazil.