Manaus at the Golden Era
Following your onboard breakfast today, your air conditioned vehicle and knowledgeable local guide will be standing by at the pier to take you on an exploration of Amazonia's "golden era" of the rubber boom. With the invention of the automobile in the late 19th century, the rubber boom began. As demand for rubber soared, small river towns like Manaus were transformed overnight into bustling centers of commerce. The city became the opulent heart of the rubber trade. Within a few short years Manaus had Brazil's first telephone system, 16 miles of streetcar tracks, and an electric grid for a city of a million, though it had a population of only 40,000. Individuals made vast fortunes and "flaunting wealth" became sport Rubber barons' lit cigars with $100 bank notes and slaked the thirst of their horses with silver buckets of chilled French champagne. Begin by crossing the 450-foot-long floating ramp that connects the dock to the street. This remarkable installation was designed by a Scottish engineer to cope with the annual rise and fall of the river, which can be as much as 40 feet. Close by you see the large yellow Customs building, constructed with materials brought as ballast from Europe. You also see the Municipal Market, whose wrought ironwork, designed by Gustave Eiffel, was imported from Europe. The Market is today under restoration and soon visitors will be able again to browse alongside the locals and purchase anything from medicinal herbs to arts and crafts. Continue your panoramic drive with a quickly stop for external view to the Rio Negro Palace, the former home of a prosperous rubber baron. Following a photo stop of the Palace, continue on to floating pier at Tropical Hotel where your regional riverboat will be on hand for the approx 20 minutes crossing the Rio Negro to visit the Rubber Scenario and Museum. A short walk through the forest will introduce you to a variety of native trees, including rubber trees and a short demonstration shows you how latex are extracted. Following a visit, your riverboat returns to the hotel pier were you would board your bus for a drive to the Bufalo restaurant, a unique venue where tender barbecued meats and fish from the huge grills are accompanied by salads in the traditional all you can eat style meal. Following lunch, continue on your tour with the 15-minute drive to the Sao SebastiU£o Square. Here, a visit will be made to Manaus' magnificent Opera House, completed in 1896 during the great rubber boom following 17 years of construction. The wrought iron skeleton of the building was brought from Scotland and the stone from Italy. The Teatro Amazonas, as it is officially called, was rebuilt in 1929 and has undergone restoration in past years. Today, it can be seen once again in its original glory. Leaving the Opera House, your will have free time at the square and opportunity to take photos of the former houses of the prosperous rubber barons. Next your memorable day in Manaus will conclude with a drive to the port and to your SeaDream II.
Notes: Guests are advised to wear light clothing. This adventure may operate in reverse order. The riverboat will be boarded by gangplank and there may be a couple of steps to negotiate in order to board the boat. The boat does not have toilet facilities onboard, there are however facilities at the Rubber Museum. This tour will involve approximately 30 minutes of walking over flat terrain. We do not recommend this adventure to guests with wheelchairs, as the riverboats used are unable to accommodate wheelchairs. PRICE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE
Duration: 6 hours hours
Price: 199 USD