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Old 22 Apr 2005
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Belem To Manaus Boats

Anyone recently done this trip and has any good info about boats that take bikes?

What´s it cost, what are the typical departure schedules and how much time I need to spend in Belem to get organised.

Are the boats all pretty much of the same standard? Can I just turn up in belem and get a boat in the next day or so.

I hear it can be a bit tricky getting the bike on the boat. Will there be a problem getting an Africa Twin on board?

Many thanks for any help you can offer.

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Old 9 May 2005
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Nobody been on the river recently?

Can´t believe it.
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Old 9 May 2005
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plenty of info in various posts, you just need to...

Grant Johnson

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One world, Two wheels.
Grant Johnson

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Inspiring, Informing and Connecting travellers since 1997!
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Old 11 May 2005
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Yeah, you can pretty much show up and load your bike. You should go and scout the boats before though. It can be tricky to load because most of the time they just place wooden planks and pretty much let you do it yourself. Suppose it depends on the specific boat and where it's docked. Bring tie downs or ropes. Good Luck!
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Old 19 May 2005
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Hola amigos,
Just traveled with two friends who came up the Amazon River to Manaus by boat, I came down the Rio Madeira from Porto Velho. We met in Manaus. They had no problems finding space. Here are a couple of tips based on their experiences and mine.
You can stay on the boat at least a night before it leaves port and maybe more, and at least a night when you reach your destination, basicially as long as it is in port. If you are renting a cabin the air conditioning probably will not work until the boat is underway. Not sure why. Cabins cost more but are worth it for saftey of your gear.
My boat it was searched very well by police when it was out on the river(it was stopped but I was on the river Madeira coming from Porto Velho to Manaus). The passage price includes all your meals but check this. Bring water to drink and rinse with cause most boats just use river water for showers and the fresh water for drinking is port city water . Bring snacks but there is a bar on the boat and meals were great. Check it out before you leave. You can meet interesting people on the boat. My friend had a very romantic voyage with a young Brazilian woman and spent some days in Manaus with her as well. Portugese wasnt a problem for them but it is what most speak.
You may be charged for loading and unloading your machine and it will be a rough job so negotiate that or pay the stevedores on either end. Have the bike ready to load at the dock and dont watch or you may cry. Have the camera ready for a priceless pic. From Manaus good road north to Caracas, good boat ride south on the Rio Madeira to Porto Velho and then good road south to Paraguay. So much fun. Bill.
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Old 20 May 2005
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Hey Matt,

I took the boat called the Amazon Star from Belem to Manaus in April. It's the best of the bunch. Leaves three or four times a week I believe. The quoted price for bike and me was 650 reais. I negotiated it down to 500.

But ... once it was time to load, the boat dudes told me the bike was too large, and it would cost another 100 reais. The owner even got involved. It took 45 minutes of civilized debate, but they finally backed down, and we all had a laugh.

And the bike loading! Like Bill says, don't watch! My bike was loaded down a narrow plank, with the Amazon on either side. The plank was too narrow for men on the side. One guy was in front of the bike, backing up in bare feet and operating the front brake. One slip, and the bike was gonna swim with the piranhas. Nerve-wracking? Oh yeah!

What I should have done is insisted they procure a second plank and secured them together with my tie-downs. The loaders pretty much demanded 50 reais for their effort.

I agree with everything my pal Bill said. The food was decent. Spend a little more for an AC cabin. I brought a chess set and played a bunch of games, helped pass the time. Boa sorte.

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Old 21 May 2005
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Hi guys,

Thanks for the info. I am currently in port in Santarem for 6 hours while the onions are offloaded. Like Vagamundo said, finding a boat was easy. Plenty leave every week. I departed the day after arriving in Belem.

I am on a boat called the Nelio Correa operated by the same company that operates the Santarem (mentioned frequently by others on this site). Cost 350 for an AC cabin and 200 for the bike. There are maybe 100 people on board. Standards are pretty good.

As for loading the bike, no problem there either. Waited for high tide in Belem and then rode it across a plank without any of the worries described by Bill!

Hope this thread helps someone in the near future. The amazon boat ride is making for a great chapter towards the end of my trip. Highly recommend it.

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Old 23 May 2006
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To those who posted the great advice about the Belem>Manaus boats-thanks. I knew the boats were there and the route was there, but had no other real details. We will not go on to Caracas though, but instead will go to Guyana from where we will ship out to Spain after teaching there for 6 weeks. The job will just about cover the cost of getting the scooter to Spain.

Thanks again
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Old 23 May 2006
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It was a couple of years ago, but I'd be v surprised if anything has changed recently.
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Old 5 Jun 2006
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Originally Posted by Ride Far
Hey Matt,

I took the boat called the Amazon Star from Belem to Manaus in April. It's the best of the bunch. Leaves three or four times a week I believe. The quoted price for bike and me was 650 reais. I negotiated it down to 500.
I suspect that you took the NM Santarem that is operated by Amazon Star.

Great boat - enjoyed your story about getting it loaded. When we made the trip (no bikes), it was fun watching them wrestle the bikes into place. Since these were smaller Brazilian-made bikes, it wasn't a huge problem. At one of the stops, the lift was about 3 feet. I'd love to see them lift a large bike like that w/o giving the owner a heart attack.

There's a fair amount of info at http://www.amazonstar.com.br

Oh yeah - food is included. Typically, rice, one meat and some bread. There's always fruit. When the boat stops in Santarem, go to Alter do Chão for the day and enjoy some time off the boat.

Here's the full program - it's in Portuguese but I'm sure y'all can figure it out:

1° dia - Saída de Belém as 18h00 -Navegação pelas Baias do Guajará e do Marajó - Jantar

2° dia - Ao amanhecer navegação pelo Rio Pará , que apesar da distância do mar sofre influência da maré. Neste dia contornaremos a ilha de Marajó passando por diversos furos, entre eles o de Breves, que permitirão o melhor contato visual com as populações ribeirinhas e a exuberante floresta amazônica. Pensão completa.

3° dia - Continuação da navegação já no largo Rio Amazonas com paradas breves em Almeirim, Prainha e Monte Alegre para embarque e desembarque de passageiros e cargas. Pensão completa.

4° dia - De madrugada, chegada em Santarém. Após o café da manhã, saída para a Vila de Alter do Chão distante 30 km. Tempo livre para banho nas águas verdes do Tapajós e passeio pela vila. Almoço em restaurante local incluído. Retorno à Santarém e embarque. No final da tarde saída do navio passando pelo Encontro das Águas do Tapajós (verde) e do Amazonas (marrom). Jantar.

5° dia - Navegação pelo Rio Amazonas e suas centenas de ilhas com paradas breves em Óbidos, Juruti, Parintins (a terra do Boi). Pensão completa.

6° dia - Navegação pelo Rio Amazonas. Café, almoço. No final da tarde, após passar pelo encontro das águas do Rio Negro e do Solimões chegada ao porto de Manaus. Desembarque.

Dayum - I miss Brazil. Luckily (for me), we'll retire there in hopefully about 7-8 years.
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Old 26 Apr 2010
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Brasil,Belem,Manaus, Boat
April 14-20th

Toques on Moto

I just finished my 6 day and 6 night sail from Belem to Manaus. I walked to the dock side one morning to the Terminal Hidroviaria in Belem and found that it was pretty easy to find a boat from Belem to Manaus which could also accomidate my motorcycle. It was a joke to ride across the plank from the dock to the boat despite what anyone says, so long as you arrive when the tide is high....so google ``tide schedule for Belem`` before you head down!

The lonely Planet book is out dated when it comes to boat schedule information. For me there was a boat on Friday, Tuesday, Wednesday for sure and possibly thursday (unsure...didn`t apply to me).

I had the choice of several boats which arrived back to port on different days on a rotation schedule. These Boats included:

1)NM Amazon Star (v-hull medium size)
2)NM Cliva (v-hull smaller size)
3) Rondonia (catamaran Large size)
4) Cisne Branco (unknown)

I was interested in only two dates which narrowed my boats to either the ``Clivia or the Amazon Star``

Cliva was quoted to be 300 REAL for a semi private room, and 200 REAL for the Bike.

Amazon Star was 300 for a Semi Private room with AC for sure, and 500 Real for the bike.

My friend Alex Reis from Moto Mania, in Belem ( Alex , he has tires, oil and is a superb fellow who greets all overlanders by bike...approximately 100 people per year) suggested that I take the Amazon Star as it was more confortable than the Clivia boat so I shelled out the extra 300 on his advice.

The Boat sail was excellent and I found the food to be great. The people on board were wonderful and there was a bar to buy ice cream, chips, nuts, soft drinks, water, Beer, liquor, and sanwiches between meal times. The rooms were almost too cold to sleep in with the AC and the meals were served on time everyday at a cost of 8 reals for lunch, 8 reals for supper and free breakfast that wasnt worth eating (white bread and sugarized coffee). Beer was 3 reals per can as were soft drinks and bottled water. To sleep in a hammock was 175 Reals but I followed the advice of other paranoid travellers and opted for the semi-private room. It was worth the extra 75 bucks US to sleep in a bed for me. I met a 67 year old Aussi woman on board travelling on a budget stricter than mine and felt like a wimp, after she told me that I was missing out of the real boat experience sleeping among the people in hammocks.

I made it to Manaus and found it to be a very populated city. To add insult to injury there was a building on fire near the docks which jammed traffic while I navigating to Hostal Manaus (suggested by the lonely Planet) I found that Hostal Manaus didn`t have secure parking for the bike so I was forced to pay double the price of the hostal`s rate for a hotel. There were multiple hoar houses on every street that charged high prices for a plastic bed and all night free porn which I continually mistook for a ligit hotel. Finally I found a pricier hotel that had secure parking and which wasnt a sex trade establishment. As a spin off for the higher price I ate the most delicious breakfast the next morning; so be weary of the price. For instance, the place I stayed at the next night in Boa Vista was called Hotel Monte Libano (suggested by the lonely Planet). It listed for the half price but served no breakfast and ended up costing me the same in the long run just to eat. As an added bonus, however, the Hotel Monte Libano included cigarette butts in the shower drain and pubic hairs between the sheets, so becareful..you`ll get what you pay for sometimes...and sometimes not.

-Greg George
Toques on Moto
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Old 26 Apr 2010
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[url=http://www.touringted.com/2008/05/04/river-amazon-and-venezuela]Touring Ted
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