"Rede" Hammock Boats are a commmon local way of transportation around the Amazon and Negro. Hammock Boats commonly run from manaus to Belem and from manaus up the Negro all the way to Colombia. These boats come in two major types - wood and steel (wood-poorer, steel-poor). Life in the boat is simple - mosquitos and fish. You eat only fish and drink dirty water as you are eaten by mosquitos. You are mostly confined to your hammock, which is a requirement to the ticket (you can go to the top of the boat during the day). These boats are cheap, but extremely overcrowded and can be extremely dangerous. It is NOT rare to hear about these boats sinking and everyone on board was killed. Even if you are a good swimmer - the Amazon fish kill faster than drowning (if you really need the details i was told e-mail me). So if you decide to use these boats be careful and always go for atleast the steel boats.
There are all the inherent dangers of travelling by boat on a large river, especially at night. Boats have been known to sink (though this is rare) but they do frequently break down, causing long delays, and many captains seem to take great pleasure in overloading boats with both cargo and passengers. In spite of the discomforts, however, the river journey remains popular.
careful, those big, very big Crocodiles( called Jacare in Brazil) are realy not in the mood to get hassled and a swim with them could be your last when on the River, never ever leave the boat or for the tremendous...enourmes strong currents, it will knock your socks off