The Pantanal is the world’s largest flooded grassland. Spilling over into Bolivia and Paraguay, the majority of these flooded savannahs lie within Brazil. Part national park and part UNESCO World Heritage site, the Pantanal hosts the highest concentrations of South America’s wildlife. Its alpha predator is the jaguar, the world’s third largest cat after tigers and lions. Jaguars look like Africa’s and Asia’s leopards, but their spots are more complex and often with a dot in the middle; and unlike leopards, they are active during the day which makes boat trips into the Pantanal’s waterways so unique. It is likely that you will see these water-loving cats hunting their preferred prey of Caimans – alligator-like reptiles – and Capybaras, 77 kilogram rodents. Although jaguars are the undisputed highlight of the Pantanal, these wetlands also provide excellent opportunities to see Giant Anteaters, Capuchin and Howler monkeys, Anacondas, Tapirs, Giant River Otters, and Marsh Deer.
The Pantanal is divided into north and south, each of which must be accessed separately. The north is reached by the unpaved and raised “Transpantaneira Highway” which begins 1.5 hours’ drive south of Cuiabá City. After crossing 122 bridges over seasonally flooded grasslands, the Transpantaneira dead ends in the town of Port Jofre, the jumping off point for boats into Meeting of the Waters State Park and jaguar habitat. The south is reached by flying into Corumbá or Campo Grande and taking the unpaved road called Estrada Parque which cuts across it. The entire Pantanal is so large that Cuiabá City in the north is some 700 kms from Campo Grande in the south. The North Pantanal’s labyrinth of rivers is widely considered to be one of the best places to see jaguars.
We have two spaces available for twin or double share. Extensions to Amazonia, Iguassu Falls, and Emas National Park for maned wolves are possible.
We will offer the Northern Pantanal again in July or August 2025 as a small group tour. Book your space now.