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The Black Water Explorer

Amazon-Angler.com | Blackwater Explorer Fishing Trip

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Tour Summary

The owners and operators of the ‘Black Water Explorer’ are long term partners in our search for trophy Peacock Bass in the Amazon jungle. Join us for an adventure fishing trip of a lifetime with your host, Steve Townson, (the original Fish Finder), aboard this luxurious yacht, deep into the mysterious and fabled Amazon jungle.


We will fish in the areas where both world records for the Speckled (or three-barred) and the Butterfly Peacock Bass were taken. You just never know what size Peacock Bass will slam into your lures when wetting your line in the tannin-stained black waters of the Rio Negro and Rio Branco tributaries.


Over the last few years, the record for Speckled or three-barred Cichla Temensis Peacock Bass have been broken many times and you never know if you might be the next World Record holder.  In particular, the Speckled Peacock is a fish of such tremendous strength and character, that it will literally give you the fight of your life.


Pound for pound, no other freshwater fish is known to fight harder or faster. Even a 10lb Peacock Bass will feel like a 20-pounder with its blistering runs and acrobatic leaps and jumps. Their ferocity can be seen and heard often when crashing at baitfish on the surface.


Many of Steve’s clients return year after year to this comfortable big boat, having fallen in love with the life and the sounds in the jungle, as well as the world class fishing. There is nothing else in the world like waking up with an Amazonian sunrise to the sights and sounds of a multitude of birds and parrots, insects and other animals, deep under the forest canopy.

Luxury aboard The Black Water Explorer

Black Water Boat Fishing Trip

The Black Water Explorer is a 24-metre, air-conditioned "riverboat" style yacht and once on board, the watchword aboard is ‘comfort’.  


The ‘Explorer’ has roomy, individually air-conditioned cabins with private bathrooms and refreshing hot showers. This wonderful yacht boasts a spacious, comfortably furnished lounge and dining room with panoramic windows. The air-conditioned, smoke-free room comfortably seats the entire group for meals.  


The ‘Explorer’ has a large, breezy, open air third deck for outdoor relaxing or stargazing. All decks have railed walkways. The fully equipped kitchen provides delicious restaurant quality meals.  The fishing boats are towed behind the yacht while we travel and are accessed at deck level when anglers embark.  


Two anglers will share a cabin if we have a full quota of clients for the week. Each cabin has individual A/C units with en-suite shower, sink and toilet. There are bunk beds in each cabin. There are drawers for clothes, shoes and luggage.  


All meals are provided on board The Black Water Explorer. For breakfast there will be an assortment of fresh fruit, juice, cereal, home-baked bread, toast, eggs, bacon, sausage and meat, pastries, pancakes, jam etc, hot coffee and tea and any beverage we have onboard.


Lunch will be sandwiches, fruit etc, made up before setting off fishing or a shore lunch with freshly-caught Peacock Bass on a home-made sapling BBQ!


Dinner will be served once all anglers are back from their day’s fishing and have washed and showered and are ready to eat. Dinner includes an assortment of meat dishes, fresh fish, vegetables, salads, desserts and fruit.


Most guests like to unwind and chill after a hard day’s fishing on the top deck with a ‘sun-downer’ or three while boasting before dinner and perhaps a few more drinks after dinner.


Cold drinks are available 24/7 including all soft drinks, bottled water and ice cold beer. A cool-box with your choice of drinks will be taken along each day while fishing. It is advisable anyone wishing to drink hard liquor to bring their own along with them.  Laundry is done daily, so anglers need not over-pack (as you might guess, we don't require formal dress for dinner).

The Boat

Top Box Pic - Blackwater


The ‘Black Water Explorer’ can take groups with up to 16 anglers a week, and we seek out productive fishing areas where there is little fishing pressure. Some of the reaches of these wonderfully pristine and unspoilt rivers themselves have even smaller streams and tributaries, with beautiful white sandy beaches. They are all filled to the brim with hidden lagoons and oxbow lakes, the favourite haunts of the mighty Peacock Bass.


The ‘Black Water Explorer’ fishes the actual Rio Negro and Rio Branco systems and many of their tributaries including the Caures, Ciuini, Alegria, Aracá, Urubaixi and Uneuixi, various other lakes and lagoon systems and also some of the more Southern fisheries of the Madeira watersheds.


We use 14-foot boats with casting decks back and front (with American-style swivel seats if needed), rear electric trolling motors and 15-25hp outboards. Two anglers per boat will be taken fishing by an experienced and local native guide. We will fish the numerous lagoons (some land-locked and hidden), smaller rivers and streams and also the main river system.

The Fishing

Mid Box Pic - Blackwater

Our groups of fishermen fly into the Jungle city of Manaus in the State of Amazona, Brazil. You will be met either by Steve or our English-speaking representative and from the airport taken to a nearby hotel to relax or sleep the night away, depending on arrival times.


Very early the next morning, we will transfer you, to a smaller airport and put you on a charter flight to either Barcelos or a nearby airstrip where the boat will be moored and waiting for you.


On arrival, a welcome drink and some food will be given to you and Steve or the boat manager will give you a chat on what to expect and how things are to be over the next seven days. Once the boat sets off towards our fishing destination, you will be allocated a cabin where we will take all your clothes and personal items.


All fishing gear will be taken to the upper deck where you can set up all your rods and tackle. Depending on the charter plane times of arrival in Barcelos and the areas to be fished, we will hopefully send you straight out on your first ½ day sortie into the wilds of the dark and mysterious jungle rivers.


For the next six days you will fish every day from 6.30am - 5-5.30pm. For obvious reasons, we would like all our clients back onboard ‘The Black Water Explorer’ by 5.30pm to avoid having to send out a search party to find you!

Your Itinerary

Peacock Bass anglers will tell you that once you have a big Peacock Bass attack your surface lure, you’ll be hooked for life!


There is nothing more exciting for an angler than seeing that big fish explode on your Woodchopper, Spook or other surface bait. The strike is nothing less than awe-inspiring. It is loud, aggressive, fast, furious and shocking all in one. Peacock Bass like to stay close to structure in the main, although spawning fish are often seen with their young, dimpling the flat, mirror-glass surface of a quiet lagoon.


Anything passing in its territory is enemy No1 and they will attack it with a ferocity like no other fish. If they don’t want to eat it, they want to kill it and that is NO exaggeration. Baits have to be worked fast here in the Amazon. Nothing slow swims in the Amazon and stays alive for long.


In the rainy season, the waters rise incredibly. A river that is only 100m wide within its banks in the dry season, may be 20 or more kilometres wide in the rainy season, spread way out into the flooded ‘Varzea’. Fishing during that time is like finding a needle in a haystack as the predators have followed the baitfish far back into the jungle. Once the rains stop and the levels recede back out of the jungle and into the river banks, this is prime time to catch this magnificent adversary.


The main structures that Peacock Bass love to inhabit are entrances to lagoons,  points of beaches and trees, shoulders between a bank and an island, blow-downs and lay-downs, stands of trees and individual trees, sandy beach troughs made by the current, rocks etc.


Best surface baits to use are Woodchoppers and other propbaits, walk-the-dog style lures like Spooks and other cigar-shaped baits and Poppers. Best sub-surface lures are lead-head jigs, minnow-style baits like Rapala X Raps, Yozuri Crystal Minnows, Cotton Cordell or similar.


Jigs can catch you over 150 fish a day and although many will be smaller than when using the larger baits, huge fish are often caught. Fly fishing is a great way to fish in the right conditions, off sandy beaches, in lagoons and in the many river systems. You can catch over 200 Peacocks a day with large, flashy streamer flies.

Our Quarry – The Peacock Bass

Bott Box Pic - Blackwater

Day 1:  From Europe – you will fly to Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Brasilia or similar, clear customs and check into a national flight to Manaus. From the States, you will arrive either via Atlanta or Miami directly to Manaus.


Day 2:  Arrival in Manaus. You will be met by Steve or our English-speaking representative and from the airport taken to a nearby hotel to relax. You may want to go and see the sights of Manaus and we can have our representative organize this for you.


Day 3:  After a good night’s sleep, we will transfer you to a smaller airport and onto a charter flight to Barcelos. Upon arrival you will be taken to ‘The Black Water Explorer’ and from there start your fishing trip of a lifetime. Depending on charter plane departure and arrival times, fishing should be possible this same afternoon.


Day 4-9:  Six full fishing days while travelling to and from our fishing destination. Enjoy!


Day 10:  You will fly on an early charter plane from Barcelos to Manaus arriving at about 11am. You will be met and transferred to Eduardo Manaus airport for your flight back home.


Day 11:  You will arrive from Brazil and make the onward journey home.

Travel Plan

What Does It Cost?

Our Black Water Explorer luxury rainforest fishing trip adventure covers 11 days with five travel days, eight nights and six+ fishing days. Single and double occupancy available.


Included in our Black Water Explorer packages are airport transfers, one night on arrival in hotel room in Manaus (based on double occupancy), return trip charter flight Manaus/Barcelos with 6+ days fishing, fishing licenses, all accommodation aboard the Black Water Explorer, all meals, drinks, laundry service etc.


Not included in our Black Water Explorer packages are *international airfares into Brazil and National airfares to Manaus, Brazil; meals away from Black Water Explorer, tips to hotel porters, staff and guides; costs associated with passports and visas (Citizens of the EEC do NOT need visas for Brazil); costs associated with medical advice and medications for your trip; hotel stays (if necessary) elsewhere; insurance.


$4,450 per angler, double room *

$4,950 per angler, single room *


A 50% deposit is required to reserve places when booking. The remaining payment is due 90 days before actual trip starts.


* Prices are stated as a guide and may be subject to currency and seasonal variations. Please enquire for exact prices for the dates you are interested in.


** Flights to Brazil and onto Manaus are not included, but we can help you arrange them.


**A strict 15kg weight allowance will be enforced on each trip for smaller charter flights.

ask Steve


A full tackle guide and gear list will be provided once a deposit payment has been received for reservation of trip.

Through our travel agent partners we are able to secure excellent rates for all your international and domestic flights and travel insurance that are not included in our packages.

Please ask for Details



The Amazon Jungle aboard the luxury Black Water Explorer riverboat

Primarily the Rio Negro and Rio Branco, plus the Madeira watersheds


September to March

Riverboat style yacht

Peacock Bass ~ Suribim ~ Traira ~ Bicuda ~ Dogfish ~ Jacunda ~ Catfish ~ Pescada ~ Arauana ~ Piranha

Luxury accommodation and unforgettable fishing trips deep in the Amazon rainforest

$4,450 per angler, double room *

$4,950 per angler, single room *

11 day package 6+ days’ fishing, plus your international flights



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