Detailed program: Itinerary
The 16-day Pantanal & jaguar safari is available as a group tour
(maximum 6-person in a group) and a Private tour.
Day 1: Cuiaba – Pouso Alegre
The start of your Pantanal & jaguar safari. We will welcome you at the airport or your hotel. From there we drive 100km to the city of Pocone. Pocone is the gateaway to the Pantanal.
From Pocone we transition from a paved road onto the Transpantaneira highway which is a dirt road. For approx. 40km we continue on the dirt road while enjoying the wildlife and wetland on both sides of the road untill we arrive at Pousada Pouso Alegre.
Pouso Alegre has some of the most impressive birding anywhere on the planet, with huge numbers of birds seen daily, some of the highest of any of our tours. The reason why it’s so great is that it is easyto access a wide variety of habitats, including rivers, wetlands, flooded pastures, gallery forest, and dry scrub. Some of the main highlights are the huge Hyacinth Macaws, Greater Rhea, Bare-faced Curassow, Chestnut-bellied Guan, up to four ibises, the hulking Southern Screamer, Jabiru, Maguari Stork, Nacunda Nighthawk Black-collared Hawk, White Woodpecker, Gray-crested Cacholote, Great Rufous Woodcreeper, Mato Grosso Antbird, White-lored Spinetail, and Red-crested Cardinal.
Day 2: Full day at Pouso Alegre
Full day dedicated to observing the Pantanal’s flora and fauna found on the Pouso Alegre private reserve. Early morning walk for bird and wildlife viewing. We will walk into the Forest to continue exploring the forest and grasslands to spot animals and birds, including, Great Rufous, Straight-billed and Narrow-billed Woodcreepers, Ondulated Tinamou, Glittering-throated Emerald, Black-fronted Nunbird, Bat Falcon, Black-bellied Antwren, Planalto Slaty Antshrike, Saffron-billed Sparrow and Blue-crowned Trogon, armadillos, storks, coatis, capybaras, hyacinth macaws, howler monkeys, and a dozen of other animals and birds.
After lunch in the afternoon we drive by open truck in a private road and explore the open lands and grasslands in search for Birds, also South American coati, giant anteater, tapirs, armadillos, and a host of other animals and birds. From Mid July to end of October we can spend time at water holes waiting for animals that come to drink water, great chances for Tapir and giant anteaters. After dinner we take a night Safari with spotlights, drive along the private road of the lodge, we will watch for Nocturnals Birds as Spot-tailed and Scissor-tailed Nightjars. We may also encounter the local Great Horned Owl, that has red eyes and a different call to the one in North America (Possible future split?). Eventually, we may see some mammals such the Crab-eating Fox and Ocelot.
Day 3: Full day wildlife viewing at Pouso Alegre
Same as previous day.
Dag 4: Pouso Alegre – Rio Claro
After another morning at Pouso Alegre Lodge we drive a few hours south, deeper into the Pantanal. We’ll stay two nights at a lodge on the edge of the sluggish Rio Claro River, and one of the highlights here are the afternoon boat trips on the river. A relaxing way to see the very rare Agami and Boat-billed Herons, Blue-throated Piping-Guan, Black-collared Hawk, up to five species of kingfisher, Giant Otter, and more. As darkness falls, Band-tailed Nighthawks appear to hunt insects over the river along with huge Greater Bulldog Bats. Spotlighting for nightjars in the evening might get us Spot-tailed Nightjars, and Pauraque.
Day 5: Full day of wildlife and birdwatching at Rio Claro
A nearby trail passes through gallery forest along the edge of the river, which can be loaded with birds in the morning. The open nature of the forest makes it relatively easy to see them, and Band-tailed Antbird, Large-billed Antwren, and Helmeted Manakin can usually be seen without too much difficulty. A Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl imitation can often bring in large mobbing hordes of passerines, like Flavescent Warbler, Ashy-headed Greenlet, Stripe-necked Tody-Tyrant, and others. We can also target anything else we are still looking for, which could include White-naped Xenopsaris, Pale-crested Woodpecker, or Nanday Parakeet.
In the afternoon, we’ll have the option of having another boat trip on the river.
Day 6: Rio Claro – Porto Jofre
Early morning walk for bird and wildlife viewing Pixaim River to Porto Jofre Area, Porto Jofre accomodation (multiple options available). After Lunch, we’ll board On our Open Car and drive south towards the end of the Pantanal Highway. We’ll be making stops along the route any time and every time we fell there are birds to be watched. This activity will allow us to explore different types of habitat at the Pantanal such: Marshes, Savannas and Forests. So, the chances of seeing many kinds of birds will be very good such as:
Rufous-tailed Jacamar, White-lored and Cinereous-breasted Spinetail, Mato Grosso , Red-billed Scythebill, Flavescent Warbler, Purplish Jay, Orange-backed Oriole (Troupial), Crested Oropendola, Solitary Black-Cacique, Blue-crowned Trogon, Black-fronted Nunbird, Silver-beaked Tanager, Rusty-collared and White-bellied Seedeaters, Lesser/Chestnut-bellied Seed-Finch.
We’ll reach our very comfortable accomodation at the very end of the road. Get in time for Dinner.
Day 7: Full day boat ride in search of jaguars
Jaguar is the main target here, and we’ll spend the full day cruising various rivers in a motorboat looking for this magnificent animal.We have radio contact with other boats, so if there is a jaguar seen we can head for the location.
Jaguars here are not very shy and will often stay in view for an extended period of time. We will not ignore other birds and wildlife during our search, but Jaguar is the priority. Some birds we may see include:
Sungrebe, Pied Lapwing, Yellow-billed and Large-billed Terns, Black Skimmer, Greater Ani, Anhinga, Great Black Hawk, Gray-necked Wood-Rail, and more. Families of Giant Otters are fairly common, and it is not too unusual to see a Tapir.
Instead of returning to the lodge for lunch we bring a picknickstyle lunch with us. That way we do not lose time and can enjoy our lunch in the prime jaguar habitat and in some occasions enjoy a sighting by ourselves, no other boats.
We return around 5.30 -6.00 pm at the lodge to refresh and relax before diner.
Day 8: Full day boat ride in search of jaguars
After an early breakfast, we embark our boat to explore the Meeting-of-the-Waters State Park, the best area to view Jaguars in the entire world. The rivers include the Three Brothers, Cuiabá, and Piquirí. Outings take place between 6 am and 6 pm, and are timed to allow photography during the first and last hour of light.
We have great chances to see Jaguars, quite often jaguars can be seen on the river banks, many of them at very close range for extended periods, specially from June to November. We will also encounter other interesting wildlife, including giant river otters, caimans, tapirs, anacondas, howler monkeys, capybaras, and many species of birds. The animals are accustomed to humans so boats can often approach to within short distance. Our boats are equipped with a short-wave radio and a canopy providing some sun protection.
For lunch we enjoy a picnic-style lunch while anchored along the river with plenty of opportunities to take a safe bathroom break on the beaches as necessary (Or if you prefer we can return to Porto Jofre accomodation for lunch and rest,and start again in the afternoon) . Return to Porto Jofre at the end of the afternoon in time for dinner.
Day 9- 12: Full day boat ride in search of jaguars
Same as previous day.
Day 13: Porto Jofre – Piuval lodge
Ealy Breakfast and check-out. We embark our safari truck and drive back on the Transpantaneira highway towards Piuval lodge. During our way back we have plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the wildlife that we will encounter.
We arrive at Pousada Piuval in time for lunch. In the afternoon we can explore by car or on foot.
At Piuval lodge we have excellent opportunities to spot Giant anteater, southern tamandua, hyacinth macaws, blue-and-yellow macaws, red legged seriema and many more wildlife.
If you are interested in horseback riding or photographing pantaneiro’s driving the horses, that is possible at Piuval.
Day 14: Full day of Wildlife viewing
We will dedicated a full day to observing the Pantanal’s flora and fauna found on the Pousada Piuval property.
Early morning walk for birds and wildlife viewing. We will walk into the Forest to continue exploring the forest and grasslands to spot animals and birds. In the afternoon we explore by car in search for giant anteaters and other mammals.
At night we are going to have Night safari looking for animals using a spotlight.
Early morning walk looking for birds, back to the lodge for breackfast, after we will walk or explore by car in the forest looking animals and birds, Back the the lodge for lunch. In the afternoon we are going to have a boat ride or game drive looking for some very rare birds as azure Galinune.
After breakfast we check-out and start our way back on the Transpantaneira road towards Cuiaba. We normally arrive in Cuiaba around 12 am (lunch time). However if you have an early flight to catch, we can arrange for an early transport to the airport.