Ocean cruising isn’t the only way to see spectacular wildlife by ship. Last year Avalon Waterways launched the 44-passenger Amazon Discovery, sailing the Peruvian Amazon with all-suite accommodation and expert naturalists on board to help you spot and identify the amazing flora and fauna of the region.

The trip is essentially a cruise-tour; you get three nights in Lima, one at the Sacred Valley, one at Machu Picchu and one at Cusco, with just three nights on board. But don’t worry – there is ample time for wildlife encounters. Included in the programme is a visit to a manatee rescue centre; a trip to an island colonised by iguanas; and a chance to fish for piranha (exercising due care to avoid the teeth). You’ll keep a lookout for grey and pink freshwater dolphins, and you can join a night expedition on a panga (a small boat) in search of caiman and other nocturnal wildlife. By day, you’ll see monkeys and sloths in the trees as dazzling macaws fly over the jungle canopy.

  • Departures throughout the year from £3,834 including flights (0800 668 1843, avaloncruises.co.uk).