Wild jaguars on the riverbanks; silent caiman in the water; macaws roosting in the trees at sunset over here... Gauchos on horseback, handmade lassoos in hand; cattle grazing in meadow pastures over there...
Let us take you to the Pantanal and you could stay in a vast reserve that is half wildlife conservation project, half working cattle ranch. The former is the focus, the latter there if you’re interested.
Whether you stay here, or at another specialists wildlife eco-lodge, the vast Pantanal tropical wetland is one of the best wildlife destinations on our planet. Spreading across the borders into Bolivia and Paraguay, the Pantanal is 10 times the size of Florida's Everglades and twice as big as Portugal. And yet only 5% of it is protected in some way, making planet-positive tourism a vital factor in its conservation.
Just look at the photos - our photos - that's how close you can get in the open marshes on river and jeep safaris. On land, the marsh deers are a beautiful sight, tapirs roam around freely while the cute capybaras lazing around are usually everyone’s favourite.
Then there are the real star sightings. This is considered the best place in the world to see jaguars in the wild...
Birds, everywhere In the Pantanal, birds, of so many varieties, are everywhere. The Blue Hyacinth macaws are perhaps the most photogenic, seen in abundance and protected and monitored by a team of resident biologists. Or maybe it's the Jabiru storks. Or maybe the Agami herons, or Toco toucans. You don't have to know your jacamars from your hummingbirds to be constantly surprised and delighted by the Pantanal.
Jaguar tracking We'd love to pair you up with the Onçafari research team to track the wetland's wild jaguars. They were responsible for the first successful reintroduction of orphan jaguars into the wild, an event which was the subject of a fascinating BBC natural history documentary. One of the best chances to see the cats in the wild is actually after dark, so maybe you’ll want to head out with the team on a night drive?
Cowboys and caiman Your lodge is dedicated 50% to the wildlife and the protection of its habitats and 50% to the ranchers and the protection of a traditional way of life. Early one morning you can set off to one of the staging points to watch the cowboys get ready for their day, making lassos by hand, picking out their horses and heading out with the cattle. Others are returning from days away in the distant pastures, four mounted men leading hundreds of cattle with little more than a couple of dogs.
How to visit the Pantanal with Pura Aventura One possible base here is one of Brazil's most respected eco-lodges and a Private Reserve of Natural Patrimony - an area of land voluntarily and perpetually given over to nature preservation. Once secured, its status cannot be altered by the government, even the current one. Whether here or elsewhere, we like to have you stay for at least three nights to have enough time to get out and explore, without rushing.
There's something to see here all year round, but for many of you, a jaguar sighting will be the biggest prize. To give yourself the best chance, we want to get you there in the dry season between July and October, when the water levels recede and they come to the water's edge to seek food. This is also the mating season for many birds and the striking Tabebuia trees are in blossom.
We’ve included a couple of trip ideas below which include the Pantanal, but as everything we do can be tailored to you, please do share any ideas with us and we'll be happy to chat them through.