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adventure travel trip to Brazil
Explore the lush wetlands of the Pantanal by boat for close-up wildlife encounters.
  • Privately on Request
  • Duration 9 days
    Group Size 6-10
    Land Cost $4,350 Details
    Single Supplement $1,025
    Lodging 3 stars-4 stars
    Grade I-II
    Best Time

    Pantanal, Rio and Rainforest

    Pantanal wildlife, Rio highlights, Ilha Grande forests & beaches (and Iguazu Falls add-on)

    Day 1      Sao Paulo / Campo Grande

    Most travelers fly into Campo Grande via Sao Paolo. You'll be greeted on arrival in Campo Grande and drive three hours to your lovely base in the world's most famous wetland, the Pantanal. On the drive, and during an after-dinner presentation, your guide will orient you to the region, its annual cycles from fIood to drought, the fascinating inter-play between ranching and wilderness, and the reasons for the abundant wildlife.  Your pousada, or inn, is actually the ranch home of a gracious family that lives there, adores the Pantanal, and welcomes the opportunity to host guests. The home cooking is out-of-this-world. Family-style meals delight vegetarians and carnivores alike.

    Meals: Dinner
    Lodging: Pousada Refugio da Ilha (or similar)

    Make yourself at home for four days with your welcoming hosts in their ranch home, now converted to a comfortable lodge.
    Day 2      Pantanal

    During your time in the Pantanal, daily activities will vary but will always be planned to take best advantage of the wildlife. weather, and your preferences and abilities.  While here, you can engage the environment in a number of ways. The lodge's birdfeeding stations attract a glorious array of species. Photographic opportunities around the lodge are fantastic. With your guide, you can: walk on trails through the bush and along the river in search of wildlife and interesting vegetation; ride horseback, as the locals do, to visit areas where water might be too deep for vehicles and too shallow for boats; safari by boat or by 4-wheel-drive jeep. You can also paddle downriver by canoe for a silent exploration of the wilds.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Pousada Refugio da Ilha (or similar)

    Driving in 4-wheel drives on the tracks of the Pantanal, you may encounter a Giant Anteater and her baby.
    Day 3      Pantanal

    On your second full day in the Pantanal, your guides will offer opportunities for additional wildlife viewing and for continued engagement in the natural areas by modes most suited to you. The rhythms of ranch-stay will now be familiar: early morning coffee, tea, and wildlife; hearty breakfast; morning outing; expansive picnic lunch; afternoon outing; insightful discussion over pre-dinner drinks and a gourmet-quality buffet; then after-dark wildlife spotting.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Pousada Refugio da Ilha (or similar)

    Glimpse striated herons, tiger herons, and dozens of other bird species on each river outing.
    Day 4      Pantanal

    Your third and final full day in the Pantanal brings another set of opportunities to see some of the many creatures that inhabit this watery wilderness, and to talk with the hosts and ranchhands about life in the Pantanal.  By now, you'll be tallying an impressive list of bird, mammal, reptile and plant species.

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging: Pousada Refugio da Ilha (or similar)

    Spot capybara (above), caimans and river otters.
    Day 5      Pantanal / Campo Grande / Rio de Janeiro

    After breakfast at your pousada, transfer to Campo Grande to travel by air to Rio de Janeiro. You'll be met by the next member of your guiding team who will accompany you to your hotel, introduce you to the city, and assist with your dinner arrangements. 

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Hotel Praia Ipanema (or similar)

    In the Pantanal, your guide will lead you at dusk to watch scores of hyacinth macaws -- the world's largest macaws -- coming in
    Day 6      Rio / Tijuca / Corcovado / Sugar Loaf

    After an early breakfast at the hotel, begin a full, carefully-paced, thoroughly informative tour of Rio. Stop first at Tijuca National Park, the largest urban forest on earth, continue to nearby Christ the Redeemer statue on Corcovado Mountain, and then to Sugar Loaf, the impressive granite rock "mountain" (made famous by James Bond.) Ride the cable car to the top, 400 meters above the city, with breathtaking views of Guanabara Bay, the city skyline and the mountains beyond.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Hotel Praia Ipanema (or similar)

    Take in magnificent city views from Sugar Loaf
    Day 7      Rio de Janeiro / Ilha Grande

    After breakfast at your hotel in Rio, depart for the Angra dos Reis pier, and your ferry to Ilha Grande. The island boasts over 100 exquisite beaches, and an entire interior of Atlantic rainforest. there are only three settlements, and you'll stay in one of them, the charming Abraão Village.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Pousada Tagomago (or similar)

    Bid farewell to cosmopolitan Rio
    Day 8      Ilha Grande beaches and rainforest

    After breakfast, depart for a full-day boat tour through the northern beaches of the island. Visit the Blue Lagoon, Bananal, Green Lagoon, Ponta do Aripeba, and Maguariquessaba, and after a relaxing mid-day lunch stop, visit Saco do Céu and Feiticera beaches. Masks and snorkels are included for the group on this day trip. You'll want to have clothes with you that can protect you from wind and sun.

    Meals: Breakfast
    Lodging: Pousada Tagomago (or similar)

    Spend two days enjoying the wild Atlantic rain forest and coastal wonders of Ihla Grande.
    Day 9      Ilha Grande / Rio de Janeiro

    After breakfast, meet at the pier to take the 10:00 am ferry back to Angra dos Reis, and then drive about 2.5 hours to Rio de Janeiro Airport for your take flight back home. Or, if your schedule allows, fly from here to Iguazu Falls, for a guided tour of both the Brazilian and Argentine sides. The Falls are enormous and extensive; the walkways allow for marvelous views, and rainbows, butterflies and tropical birds abound.

    Meals: Breakfast

    Extend your trip to visit Iguazu Falls

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