• Duration 10 days
  • Difficulty 2/5
  • Group Size 12

Pantanal and Iguaçu Falls Extension

Pantanal: 20 – 29 Sep, 2019 | Iguaçu Falls Extension: 29 – 02 Oct, 2019


Join us in South America’s greatest wildlife spectacle, Brazil’s tropical wetland region the Pantanal. Escape the urban life and enter the home of one of the continent’s most elusive predators: the mighty jaguar. In a region that boasts perhaps the world’s highest density of jaguars we offer you the opportunity to look into the eyes of this majestic cat. When not in pursuit of jaguars you may find yourself in the company of endangered giant river otters and tapirs, the once-endangered hyacinth macaw, or a plethora of capybara, spectacled caiman and birds of all descriptions.

A maximum of 12 participants will be housed in riverboats and land accommodations. Travelers will spend upwards of 3 hours, both mornings and afternoons in a speedboat, the best way to spot jaguars. Finding and photographing wildlife take extended time and dedication, but can be astoundingly rewarding. You will be situated in the best locations for seeing the region’s birds, mammals, reptiles and of course jaguars. Your leaders were among the first people to photograph wild jaguars in the region (the photos adorned National Geographic, including the cover). Though jaguars are the expedition’ focus, the region also boasts some 350 species of birds plus much more to appease your naturalist and photographic desires. We will also enjoy seeing a host of other animals – some of them endangered, like the giant river otter. If you desperately long to see rare elusive animals and observe unique behaviors this expedition is perfect for you! A visit to one of the world’s most spectacular waterfalls – Iguaçu Falls is also available for a minimum of four people.

2 single cabins available only, on a first come first serve basis.

Partnering with The Oceanic Society

The map is a visual representation of the locations included in this trip. Click over the image to zoom into the map. For more information, please refer to the itinerary for this expedition.

Trip Details

General Information


USD $6,895.00 per person sharing


SINGLE SUPPLEMENT USD $990.00


USD $2,100.00 per person sharing for Iguaçu Falls


Arrival: Cuiaba Airport, Brazil


Departure: Cuiaba Airport, Brazil


Arrival Time: Afternoon of 10th September

INCLUDED

  • Two Expedition trip leaders.
  • Lodging at all hotels during the expedition.
  • All ground transportation.
  • Meals and bottled water.
  • Flight from Cuiaba to Foz do Iguaçu.
  • Iguaçu bed and breakfast basis only.
  • Local guide services in English.
  • Tips to guides and drivers.

NOT INCLUDED

  • Round trip International airfare to Cuiaba.
  • Entry visa for Brazil.
  • Compulsory yellow fever inoculation.
  • Early or late check-in at Cuiaba hotel.
  • Personal expenses.

VIEW ITINERARY

A Day 1, September 20th: Arrive to Cuiabá

The expedition begins at the gateway to Brazil’s Pantanal: the city of Cuiabá. After arrival we will transfer to the Slaviero Varzea Grande Hotel. Dinner will be in a local restaurant followed by a briefing about the trip.

B Day 2, September 21st: SouthWild Pantanal Lodge

Today begins with breakfast at the hotel. Afterwards we will commence our journey into the Pantanal on the Transpantaneira road, enjoying the benefits of the raised earthen road to view many native Pantanal animals. We will arrive at this birders’ paradise in time for lunch followed by a relaxed boat ride on the river for the afternoon activity. In the evening we will look for another elusive cat, the ocelot.

C Day 3, September 22nd: Pantanal Jaguar Expedition

After breakfast at SouthWild Pantanal Lodge we will continue to Porto Joffre where speedboats will be waiting to transport us to SouthWild Jaguar Flotel & Suites: our live-aboard river hotel that will serve as our ‘home base’ for the next days while we search the rivers for jaguars. This afternoon we have our first river excursion in search of jaguars.

D Day 4-8, September 23rd – 27th: Pantanal Jaguar Expedition

For the next five days we will invest our time heavily in pursuit of Panthera onca the jaguar. Expect to find this elusive feline patrolling the banks of the many rivers and to be able to photograph it from our private speedboats. The days will be filled with the exciting expectation of seeing jaguars, followed by the adrenaline of coming face to face with one. Between jaguar sightings you will be able to enjoy watching or photographing many animals which live in or around the river. These could include giant river otters, tapirs, toco toucans, caiman, capybara, monkeys a plethora of birds and many more species.

E Day 9, September 28th: Fazenda Pouso Alegre

Today we retrace our steps part way back up the Transpantaneira for an overnight stay at a naturalist’s paradise Fazenda Pouso Alegre. Apart from a wealth of birds including hyacinth macaws and many other tropical species that we will see during our explorations, on foot this will also be our best chance for giant anteaters. Jacaré caiman and capybaras will also be present around the lodge.

A Day 10, September 29th: Return to Cuiabá

After our final breakfast together we will say our goodbyes and head for the Cuiabá airport for flights back home. However, the expedition does not need to end here – there is an optional extension to Iguaçu Falls for those that are interested (minimum of 4 required).

F EXTENSION TO IGUAÇU FALLS 29 September – 2 October, 2018

Iguaçu means “big water” in the Guarani Indian language, which is a fitting description for this magnificent landscape. Iguaçu is simply spectacular! The falls range from 60-80 meters (200-269 feet) in height and stretch for 2.7 kilometers (1.7 miles), making them twice as wide as Niagara Falls. They are located within two UNESCO World Heritage sites, which means the lush microclimate created by the large clouds of spray and the falls themselves are protected. A visit here will undoubtedly leave you in awe.

The fauna around the Iguaçu Falls is extremely rich with over 60 species of mammals, 422 birds, over 40 reptiles, 18 amphibians, and 250 butterfly species. This area tends to be our best chance of seeing large numbers of toco toucans, the most spectacular of all toucans.

F Day 10, September 29th: Fly from Cuiaba to Iguaçu Falls

For those who choose to visit this spectacular waterfall we will head from Cuiabá to Foz do Iguaçu where we will stay the night at the only hotel within the park borders, the famous and luxurious Das Cataratas Hotel. We will use the afternoon to have a first peek at our surroundings. With continuous access to the falls from our hotel we will be free to come and go as we please. Not only is Iguaçu Falls on our doorstep, so is the exciting wildlife of the region including coatis, jays and toucans.

F Day 11-12, September 30th – October 1st: Iguaçu Falls

The following two days are made up of difficult decisions! You can either spend the time in personal exploration of the region or partake of one of the many optional extras, including the opportunity to explore the power of the falls from a large, fast inflatable boat at water level or to visit the neighboring bird park which hosts many exotic captive bird species in large walk-through natural settings. Overnight at Das Cataratas Hotel.

F Day 13, October 2nd: Depart Iguaçu Falls

Today is our final chance to explore the region before our transfer takes us back to Foz do Iguaçu airport for our return flights home. It is the last chance to get that photo you have been itching to take and a final look at the spectacular falls we will have seen.

Expedition Leaders

Discover the world with experienced travelers


Pete Oxford

Photographer | Owner | Trip Leader

Pete Oxford has lived in Ecuador since 1985. He works as part of a professional photographic and tour leading team, usually with his wife Reneé Bish as part of Pete Oxford Expeditions. They specialize in wildlife and indigenous cultures. Pete began in tourism in 1987 while living as a naturalist guide in the Galapagos Islands. He has been all over the Pantanal and has explored all the different regions of the wetland, including while working as a consultant for WWF. His excellent knowledge of the wildlife and environment is impressive. Pete was one of the first professional photographers to photograph wild jaguars in the Pantanal, and those photographs subsequently appeared within and on the cover of National Geographic. He brings a depth of knowledge, experience and humor to each destination.

Wayne Sentman

Director of Conservation Travel Programs at the Oceanic society

Wayne Sentman has worked as a natural history guide over the last 20 years for the Oceanic Society, a US-based marine conservation non-profit. Currently he serves as their Director of Conservation Travel Programs, where he designs mission driven expeditions that utilizes tourism to support conservation research directed at species and habitat protection, and promotes transformational travel as a means to motivate public behavior changes that enhance conservation goals. He has field experience in the US in Hawaii, and Alaska, and internationally in Micronesia, the Caribbean, Kenya, Suriname, Peru, Tonga, Indonesia, and the North Pacific. For 10 years he assisted and led field conservation research projects monitoring a variety of endangered or protected species. Since 2001 Wayne has also been an instructor for a 3-week undergraduate wildlife ecology field course conducted each year on the Mpala Research Center in Kenya. In 2013 Wayne completed his Master’s degree in Sustainability and Environmental Management at Harvard University. Wayne’s interests include photography, human wildlife conflict resolution, plastic pollution as a mechanism of contaminant exposure in wildlife, and the use of art and digital media to interpret environmental problems to a global audience.

Photo Gallery

Some of the amazing scenery, wildlife and cultures you will discover during this unforgettable experience


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