“cheia” and “seca” on the Amazon region

September 6, 2010 | By More

Life on the Amazon region is altered to a great extent by one single factor: the water levels of the Amazon river and its numerous tributaries. Water levels provoke profound transformations on the landscape and the way of living of natives of the region. This alternation between the cheia –the flooding season, and the seca –the dry season, is a truly awesome phenomenon. The former happens roughly between January and June. The latter between July and December.

Between the height of the rainy season and the lowest point of the dry season the level of the river suffers a spectacular 15-meter oscilation. 15 meters that have a great effect on life on the Amazon.

1. The Amazon during the rainy season

Praia do Amor, Alter do Chão, Brazil

Heavy rainfall brings about rising water levels. Pastures are flooded and cattle must be driven far away during this time of the year. Quite often the river level dangerously approaches the wooden floors of stilts where many people live. The wonderful igapós –flooded forests, are formed during this time of the year.

Floresta Encantada, Alter do Chão, Brazil

If you travel to the Amazon this time of the year you will reach most places by boat or canoe. And you will marvel at the tricks displayed by the inhabitants of the jungle to survive in the midst of a flooded land.

Canal do Jari, Brazil

2. The Amazon during the dry season

Manaus / Manaos

Although rain is by no means unusual during the so-called dry season, its intensity reduces and the river levels recede uncovering pastures. Cattle returns and the river distances itself from the houses.

Manaus / Manaos

Floating houses are often stranded when the river level recedes.

Manaus / Manaos

The flooded forests dry up and river beaches appear.

Praia do Amor, Alter do Chão, Brazil

During this time of the year you will walk along places that were flooded during the rainy season.

Parque Ecológico Janauary, Amazonas

3. What is the best time of the year to visit the Amazon?

Both seasons have its advantages and disadvantages. We will answer the question of when is the best time to visit the Amazon region shortly here at the Brazil Travel Blog.

destination: Alter do Chão and the river Tapajós
an Amazon adventure: trips around Alter do Chão
riverboats across the Amazon – schedules / timetables
destination: Manaus
Jungle Lodges in the Amazon
Amazon riverboat trips

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Category: Destination: Amazon

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