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The Amazon River is arguably the largest river in the world rivalled only by the Nile in Africa. At its widest point the Amazon River is 11 km/7 miles wide during the low season, but during the high water season when the Amazon floods the surrounding plains, the river can be up to 45km/28 miles in breadth. The Amazon carries more water than any other river in the world as it flows into the Atlantic Ocean. In fact, it is responsible for around 20% of the fresh water that flows into the world’s oceans. For much of its path, the Amazon River can be as much as one to six miles wide! During flood seasons, the Amazon River can be far, far wider; some report it is more than 20 miles wide (32 km) in certain places.
The first European found the Amazon because when 200 miles out to sea he noticed that he was sailing in fresh water. He turned toward shore and found the Amazon River. Today, ships still anchor in the outflow of the Amazon, to remove the barnacles attached to their hulls. (Salt water organisms can't live in fresh water). The Upper Amazon River is navigable to Riverboats from where it crosses the Colombian border at Leticia into Peru.
The Amazon rainforest is home to over 300 species of mammals, thousands of freshwater fish, tens of thousands of trees and nearly a hundred thousand other plant species. The Amazon is home to the piranha, one of the world's most terrifying fish. You may also be lucky enough to spot a jaguar along the riverbanks, or a toucan, which is found nowhere else in the world! Enjoy the pristine wilderness areas and incredible plant life, such as the colossal Victoria Regia water lilies. There’s no better way to experience the tropical jungle and learn about the diverse Amazon rainforest wildlife than travelling by river.
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