Best excursion on the Amazon River with Gil Serique!
I took an excursion into the Amazonian rainforest while visiting Brazil. Gil Serique met the Veendam, a Holland America ship, at Santarem.
A large number of passengers boarded Gil's vessel and we headed into the rainforest. A brief squall passed overhead while Gil shared both local and his personal history. His grandfather first came to Brazil from Morocco, making a life for himself and his family. Gil took personal interest passenger comforts as the vessel went ever deeper into the thick jungle. At one point, Gil stopped, inviting passengers into speedboats. This remains the most memorable part of the trip, as the small boat made its way through thick, nearly impenetrable, trees, vines and growth. This forested growth emerges many feet from the waters. The speedboats driver pointed out birds and wildlife high above us.
The speedboat then made its way to wider passageways as the broad expanse of this enormous waterway became clear. After returning to the larger ship, Gil set out an amazing array of nuts and fruit, all native to the Amazonian River.
Thus trip remains the highlight of my 50-day voyage aboard the Veendam. My only regret was that I did not have a recording device and telephoto lens while on this fantastic excursion.
I immensely enjoyed this trip, and hope to again join Gil on a similar excursion to explore the secrets of the Amazon River. This is an unqualified 2 thumbs up for Gil and his outstanding excursions in this part of the world."