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Ultimate Guide to the Amazon Rainforest with Kids

amazon rainforest with kids

Did you know that 95 percent of tourists who travel to Brazil can’t wait to return? Or, that 98 percent of visitors rate Brazil’s legendary hospitality the best in the world? Add to this gorgeous weather, a vibrant culture, delectable cuisine (including Brazilian BBQ), and you’ve got the makings of an unforgettable family vacation. Brazil is also known for its incredible ecological biodiversity, exemplified by the rainforest.

Brazil boasts more than 50 percent of Amazonia. The Amazon rainforest covers an immense 2.6 million square miles in the Amazon Basin. That’s about 40 percent of South America. Densely wooded forests make up about 1.4 billion acres of the Amazon with more than 4,100 miles of rivers nurturing these verdant lands.

Ready to learn more about the Amazon rainforest with kids? Read on for our ultimate family travel guide.

The Thrill of the Amazon Rainforest with Kids

The Amazon provides habitat, food, and safety for more than 10 percent of the Earth’s known species and more than 20 percent of bird species globally. More than 50,000 unique plant species call it home as well as 2.5 million insects. What’s more, scientists continue to discover new species each year! From 2014 to 2015, 381 new organisms were confirmed. 

When to Go to the Brazilian Rainforest

Amazon river cruise
© Eric Stoen | Travel Babbo

High Season: December through March, July, and Carnaval

Dry Season: October through February (optimal time to visit beaches and sea turtles). The river is at its lowest in December.

Rainy Season: March through August with flood peaking in July. But don’t worry! This doesn’t mean your vacation will be rained out. Instead, the river will be higher, and you can take a boat further inland. If you’re visiting Brazil primarily for the beaches, though, some or all white sand beaches will be covered during this season.

National Holidays: Carnaval is a six-day festival that begins on the Friday afternoon before Ash Wednesday. Brazil sees ramped up crowds roughly one week before Christmas until one week after Carnaval. A lively time of year, many Brazilian families go on vacation during this season. What’s more, the greatest influx of tourists arrive.

Amazonia with Kids: FAQs

Capital: Brasilia

Time: AMT (Amazon Time), UTC/GMT -4 hours

Language: Portuguese

Voltage: 220 v

Adapter: Type N for US appliances

visiting the rainforest
© Pablo Hidalgo | Dreamstime.com

Visas for Brazil

The Brazilian government recently announced visa-free travel to Brazil for those holding passports from the United States, Canada, Australia, and Japan. The new policy took effect on June 17, 2019. That said, if you’re a national of a country other than the US, Canada, Australia, or Japan, then you’ll still need to go through the visa process.

Contact your nearest Brazilian embassy or consulate for up-to-date visa information based on your nationality. If you do need to apply for a Barilian visa, then we highly recommend iVisa for a fast, affordable turnaround time. Read on to find out more about visa requirements for Brazil: Mark Your Calendars: Visa-Free Travel to Brazil Begins June 17th.

Health & Vaccinations

Before every trip, make sure you and your family are up-to-date on routine immunizations including measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot. All visitors should have travel insurance that covers medical expenses. Vaccinations for Hepatitis A, Typhoid, and Yellow Fever are also recommended. Check with your doctor before travel.

While malaria cases have been reported around Manaus and the Amazon, they aren’t widespread. What’s more, the Rio Negro’s dark, acidic waters, don’t allow mosquito larvae to grow. That said, a strong DEET product will protect your family from any stray mosquitos.

Getting There

flying to Brazil
© Noblige | Dreamstime.com

The Manaus Eduardo Gomes International Airport is located 15 km from city center. It serves Manaus, Brazil, and you can get direct flights via Miami, Panama City, Rio de Janeiro, and Sao Paulo. You can also fly directly into Sao Paulo or Rio de Janeiro and take a domestic flight to Manaus. Airlines with direct flights from North America to Manaus (via Miami) include American Airlines and LATAM Airlines Brasil.

During the high season in Brazil, which runs from December through March, airplane tickets into Brazil and lodging prove most expensive. This season peaks with Carnaval. If you’re looking to economize as well as avoid crowds, consider a Brazil family vacation between May and September. The one exception to the rule is July, a Brazilian holiday month.  

Flight time from Miami: approximately 5 hours

Currency in Brazil

Brazil’s currency is known as the real (pronounced “hey-al”) and symbolized with the R$ sign. The country doesn’t accept other types of currency. Visitors can exchange up to $3,000 USD. Only exchange at places authorized by the Brazilian Central Bank (BCB).

Most establishments also accept international credit and debit cards. Exercise caution when paying with credit cards and debit cards as scams have been reported. To stay safe, only use well-known financial institutions and indoor ATMs wherever possible.

What to Eat in Brazil

Brazilian cuisine you'll love
© Stockcreations | Dreamstime.com

From Brazilian street food to Brazilian barbecue, you and your family find plenty of delicious cuisine to sample on your Amazon adventure. Read on to find out more about Brazil’s must-try foods for kids:

Safety in Brazil

Criminal activity proves more common in certain parts of Brazil such as its borderlands (except for Pantanal and Iguaçu National Park) and impoverished inner-city areas. Avoiding public buses is also recommended by the US government. As with any location that you’re visiting while at home or abroad, remain aware of your surroundings and stay vigilant. Don’t venture out after dark and use common sense. For more information on safety during your Brazil family vacation, read on.

How to Dress for Amazonia    

kid-friendly Amazon
© Our Whole Village

Because of its proximity to the Equator, the Amazon proves hot and humid. Pack clothes in muted colors and wrinkle-free fabrics that you can easily rinse out and line dry. Quick-dry fabrics are your friends.

Although counterintuitive, don’t forget a couple of long sleeve shirts and pants and always opt for loose-fitting clothes in breathable fabrics. Comfortable walking shoes that can handle short jungle hikes prove a must, too. For more on what to bring, check out our ultimate pack-and-go checklist.

Adventure Awaits Your Family in the Amazon

Ready to learn more about this stunning region? Check out our past blog posts on this magical land:

Want to find out more about traveling to Brazil with kids? We’ve got you covered! Here’s a list of our latest blog posts featuring handy travel tips:

rainforest for kids
@ Keryn Means

Want to know what others are saying about Our Whole Village’s Amazon Adventure? Check out our latest reviews from some of today’s top family travel bloggers:

Family Adventure that Makes the World a Better Place

At Our Whole Village, we carefully consider the consequences our journeys have on the environment and local communities. We work hard to ensure that your next authentic, immersive, exhilarating journey with us has a positive impact, too.

How? By working with charities and organizations that give back to local communities including the VivAmazonia School and the Almerinda Malaquias Foundation (FAM). We also carefully select the eco-friendly hotels and businesses that we visit in order to lessen our “footprint” and guarantee a brighter future for these destinations. Want to read more about our “kind” approach to tourism? Check out these articles:

Book a Family Holiday to the Amazon 

We’ll build the perfect all-inclusive experience for you and your family and manage every detail of your Brazil trip so that you can sit back and get your relax on.

We know firsthand that travel with kids doesn’t have to be stressful and have worked hard to craft a specific package for families that takes the guesswork out of travel to and through Brazil. This includes everything from pick up (and drop off) at the airport to hotel accommodations, excursions, meals, and more.

Guided boat tours are the best way to travel through the tropical rainforests of Brazil, which means five days aboard the Jacaré-Açu exploring the spectacular Anavilhanas Archipelago and the pristine rainforests of Jaú National Park.

We’ve left nothing to chance. So, all you have to do is focus on your flights to and from Manaus. Then, get ready for a life-changing adventure into the heart of the Amazon that you and your kids will cherish for a lifetime. Check out the full itinerary now.  

Ready for Your Brazil Family Adventure?

Are you and your family ready for the family adventure of a lifetime? Come along on our 8-day Brazilian Amazon Cruise, an immersive, authentic way to visit some of the most extraordinary destinations in Brazil with kids.

At Our Whole Village, we create transformational trips for curious families who want to create lasting memories while making a difference. We’re here to help you and your family experience the world, its peoples, and its cultures. Contact us today to learn more about the unforgettable experiences that we handcraft for curious families just like yours.

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ultimate guide to the Amazon

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(6) Comments

  1. Anna

    What a great collection of information on visiting the Amazon rainforest. Bookmarked.

    1. Engrid Barnett

      Thank you for the kind words, Anna! Glad you’re enjoying our guide.

  2. Sarah

    Thanks for your pleasing ideas, you have stunningly quoted your journal with the perfect information.

    1. Engrid Barnett

      Thank you for the comment, Sarah! We’re so happy you enjoyed reading about the Amazon rainforest.

  3. Aiza Khan

    Wowww, Really nice article on the rainforest for kids, When my daughter read this article she was very happy and told me mummy, please read this article, Thanks for sharing with us…!

    1. Engrid Barnett

      Thank you for the kind words, Aiza. We’re so happy that you and your daughter enjoyed reading about the Amazon rainforest!

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