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About Belem

In nearby Rehaugene you can explore the 'Pyramids of the North' - six intriguing Bronze Age, earthen burial mounds. And if you are feeling like a spot of retail therapy, you're in luck - not only is Haugesund filled with charming markets it's also home to Norway's longest pedestrian street.

Belem boasts a collection of beautiful well-preserved colonial buildings, built during the extremely wealthy era of the 19th century Rubber Boom. And although the Basílica Santuario de Nazaré looks shabby from the outside, the interior is truly spectacular.

Revitalised riverfront warehouses are now home to trendy art-house theatres, small music venues and heady café-bars. And the iconic colonial building of the fascinating waterfront market, Mercado Ver-o-Peso, is as spectacular as the colourful displays within it. Try to get there early to see fishing boats unloading their daily catch.

 

Shore excursions in Belem

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

Art and Culture of Belém

Activity mediumShopping

Duration: 4¼ hours

Explore the history, culture and treasures of Belém during this picturesque orientation of the city.

Depart the pier for a short transfer to Belém, where your cultural tour will commence.

Your first stop is at the 17th Century Forte Presépio, which can be considered as Belém´s boundary mound. Its main attraction is the “Museu do Encontro”, which recreates the history of the Tupinambá Indians, before, during and after the Portuguese settlement.

Your next stop will be at the Jewellery Hub, São José Liberto, a former prison that has been transformed into a depository, showcasing some of the Amazon's finest gold, diamonds, tourmalines, and other precious and semi-precious gems. During your visit, learn about the Amazon's mining history, explore the Gems Museum of Pará, home of the state's first jewellery collection, and do some shopping.

The sumptuous Teatro da Paz, built in 1878, is one of the symbols of the economic and cultural splendour during the golden years of the rubber boom. The theatre has had a complete refurbishment and has restored its original characteristics, from the colour of its façade to the interior wooden and stone floors, Italian marble pillars and French chandeliers.

Next, visit the Museum of Sacred Art, or 'Museu de Arte Sacra', the first of its kind in the region and one of the most important museums in Brazil. It is comprised of the Igreja de Santo Alexandre, a 17th Century Baroque church, and the Palace Episcopal. The museum features more than 300 specimens of sacred art and the Galery Fidanza, which offers a variety of regional cultural items for sale.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. This tour involves a moderate amount of walking. The tour sequence may vary. A minimum number of passengers per guide is required for operation of this tour

Belém City Tour

Activity medium

Duration: 4 hours

This overview of Belém will introduce you to the city’s many interesting sights and heritage of Brazil’s most northern port of entry to the Amazon.

Begin your visit to Belém with a stop at the Ver-o-Peso Market, a huge outdoor market, which is possibly the largest in Brazil. The myriad of stalls offer typical food with an Afro-Indian influence, pottery, handicrafts, handmade clothing, even charms made by the practitioners of macumba (Brazil's version of voodoo), vegetables, tropical fruits, and a fish market.

Next, you will explore Forte do Castelo, a fortress built by the Portuguese in the 17th Century. Standing on the highest point in the city, it served to protect the new colonies against attacks by Holland and France. From this place in the picturesque old city centre, take in the panoramic views of the large bay in front of Belém.

Continue on to the Emilio Goeldi Zoo and Botanic Gardens, which cover 5 hectares of woodland and is a renowned research centre dedicated to studying Amazonian fauna and flora. The gardens feature more than 1,500 samples of plants species and more than 1,600 fruits (in season) that grow in the region. More than 700 types of timber, as well as animals from Amazonia, birds, rodents and mammals flourish here.

Your last stop will be at the Basilica of Our Lady of Nazareth, which is an elaborate copy of St Paul's Basilica in Rome. Built during the rubber boom at the beginning of the 20th Century, this church is a fine example of beauty and architecture with a central nave, stained-glass windows and a lovely altar.

Essential information

This excursion operates by coach and on foot. Passengers are advised that the ground within the Zoo and Gardens is uneven. Comfortable, flat walking shoes are recommended. Passengers should wear sunscreen, a hat and insect repellent. Please note that the animals do not all roam freely, they are all part of an ongoing conservation programme, and some are housed and caged. This tour involves approximately 2½ hours of walking over uneven ground. Wildlife sightings cannot be guaranteed.

Guama River Exploration

Activity high

Duration: 4½ hours

Experience life along the Guama River and become acquainted with some of northern Brazil’s flora and fauna.

Embark a typical river boat awaits you for a leisurely trip along the river and through a number of smaller waterways and natural creeks. The Guama River is a branch of the Amazon River with a myriad of channels lined by lush tropical forest. The boat trip will allow you to get a closer look at equatorial vegetation and bird life.

As your boat circles Combu Island, you’ll see vast plantations and cabbage palm trees. The island is well-known for its blackberry ice cream and wine that is produced here.

At Boa Vista do Acará Island, you’ll meet the native Caboclo residents, known as ribeirinhos, and their homes stand on stilts above the river. Follow your guide on a 45 minute walk into the forest, where you‘ll be on the lookout of the local flora and fauna, such as Brazil nut and rubber trees, and perhaps a parakeet or macaw.

Essential information

This tour operates by river boat and on foot. This tour involves an extensive amount of walking through the jungle on uneven ground and dirt paths for approximately 1 hour. It is recommended that you wear comfortable, lightweight clothing and rubber-soled shoes. Please bring a hat and sunscreen. Passengers must be able to negotiate steps in and out of the river boat.

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