The exotic city of Manaus lies deep in the heart of the Amazon rainforest and is the capital of the Amazonas state. The city is steeped in culture and one of the best representations of Brazilian life outside of the more popular destinations. Luckily, it can easily be enjoyed on a budget.
Start off with a smoothie at Skina dos Sucos for just less than $10. The sandwiches here are pretty great, too. Afterward, head over to Manaus Opera House. The stunning building was built in 1897 and is made of a combination of Carrera marble and Murano glass. The décor features Louis XV furnishings, and exploring it costs just $10.
Continue on to Rio Negro Justice Palace. The building was built by a rubber businessman but is now one of the more prominent cultural centers in Manaus. Inside features excellent historical exhibits and works from local artists. If you have time before lunch, stop by the Province Palace where you’ll find the Image and Sound Museum.
Have a quick lunch at Casa da Pamonha for less than $20. They feature a light menu of exclusively vegetarian and vegan dishes.
In the afternoon you’ll want to hop a boat to where the Rio Negro and Rio Solimoes meet. The encontro das aguas, or meeting of the rivers, is where the Amazon River begins. The black waters and alkaline waters of the two different rivers form a spectacular contrast, which you can reach for roughly $20. Nearby you should also be able to find the Victoria Amazónica, the largest water lily in the world.
Finally, make your way to the Museu da Amazonia to learn more about this incredible region and the amazing wildlife found within. Entrance will cost $10.
End with a wonderful dinner at to sample the scrumptious fish cuisine of the city. A meal will cost $30.
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