How to support preservation through tourism in the Amazon.
A vacation in the Amazonian rainforest and on the Amazon River can not only
give you a broader perspective on the world's delicate eco-systems, but it can
also help the local South American economies preserve them. Eco-tourism is one
of the only ways locals generate income from the rainforest without disturbing
You care about the rainforest. You’re concerned that deforestation is causing
all sorts of ecological problems, including the extinction of plants and
animals, the destruction of a delicate habitat, and the world-wide change in
weather patterns. Maybe your concerns are global—you’ve always been a naturalist
and you believe in the power of balance in nature. Maybe your concerns are
personal—you have a basement flooded with water and you wonder if this is a
long-term effect of deforestation.
Consider that the Amazon is the only place on Earth untouched by the Ice Age.
Hence, it contains the natural heritage of 100-million years. This increasingly
diminishing natural treasure once had the power to balance the planet’s toxicity
and held secrets to heal its inhabitants.
Supporting preservation through tourism may sound ridiculous, but eco-tourism
carries with it the utmost respect for the environment. Tourists and tour
companies are expected to leave the rainforest better than they found it.
Furthermore, eco-tourist dollars support local economies, provide jobs, and
encourage preservation efforts.
The Seasons of the Rainforest
The Amazon is enormous, spanning nine South American countries. However,
almost 70% of the Amazon is in Brazil. The Amazon is approximately as big as the
US. Hence, the weather patterns can vary greatly from one region to the next.
Eastern and western Amazonia are quite rainy. So, most travelers looking for a
milder, gentler Amazonian experience choose to travel to the more temperate
In the middle Amazon, the days are comfortable with cool breezes on the river
and temperatures ranging from the mid 80s to the low 90s. There is almost always
a midday rain and sometimes even a more severe tropical storm. Despite its
equatorial location, in the evenings the temperature can drop as low as 60.
Most guided eco-tours begin in Manaus, Brazil, or Iquitos, Peru. Both offer
equally interesting geological wonders. The Brazilian tour showcases the
convergence of two differently colored rivers that feed the Amazon and the
Peruvian tour highlights the Canopy Walkway, a suspended bridge connected by
tree platforms that reach heights over 115 feet off the ground.