Wildlife of Brazil: Iguazu, Pantanal & Amazon cruise

15 days from £7,170pp

Includes: accommodation, most meals, domestic flights & transfers, 8 day cruise, itinerary as below.

Overview & Highlights

Brazil is home to blankets of tropical forest and steaming wetlands brimming with wildlife.

This wildlife focused holiday combines two contrasting regions of wild Brazil: the wetlands of the Pantanal and the Rio Negro of the Amazon region. Giving you two different wildlife experiences; a land-based eco-lodge and a whole week’s expedition cruise on MV Tucano.

Starting in the south of Brazil at Iguazú Falls, one of the most extraordinary natural phenomena in the world. A total of 275 falls thunder over a 60m high rust-coloured cliff surrounded by dense tropical forest.

Step out of your hotel room to a riot of birdsong and the thunderous roar of water crashing over lofty granite cliffs fringed by tropical rainforest. Toucans and parakeets dodge the spray, while inquisitive coatis will try to investigate the contents of your bag!

Then moving north into Brazil’s central heartland and the Pantanal wetlands where you stay in a nature lovers dream lodge.

Heading into Amazonia, enjoy an expedition cruise for a week on a traditional-style wooden craft, including several days sailing along the black waters of Rio Negro away from the tourist routes. Here you will pass few settlements so there is little river traffic… beyond the beautiful Anavilhanas archipelago there is a real feeling of remoteness.


  • Services of team of experts both in the UK and local representatives & guides.
  • All land and domestic air transport within Latin America
  • Breakfast daily, full board days 4-6, 8-14.
  • Excursions as specified, including entrance fees
  • Guided tour of the Argentine side of Iguazú Falls
  • Safari expeditions from the Pantanal lodge
  • Daily guided explorations during your Amazon cruise
  • 14 nights accommodation: Iguazú Falls 2, Cuiabá 1, Pantanal lodge 3 Manaus 1; Amazon cruise 7.
Jules Croucher

For wildlife enthusiasts, this is a true trip of a lifetime. Immerse yourself deep into the heartlands of Brazil and its abundance of wildlife. From the vast wetlands of the Pantanal to cruising down the Amazon, you’ll have superb opportunities for wildlife spotting. Travelling down the black waters of the Rio Negro will give you a true sense of remoteness and closeness to wild Brazil.”

The Pantanal wetlands cover a large basin half the size of France. This basin is seasonally flooded and is drained by the Paraguay River, which flows into the south Atlantic via the River Plate estuary.

A vast, open area of swampy grasslands, where wildlife co-exists harmoniously with the cattle which breed on the ranches in the area. According to season, you might observe regiments of alligators, flocks of thousands of roseate spoonbills, ibis, macaws and giant storks. This region is a paradise for nature lovers and home to Jaguar conservation projects.

In the heart of the Amazon, a huge variety of flora and fauna is to be seen from macaws and sloths to anacondas. Many species are shy but your experienced guides are experts at wildlife spotting!

ITINERARY (This tour can be booked, starting on a Friday between April and November).

  • Day 1: Arrive in Foz do Iguaçu. Transfer to your accommodation on the Brazilian side of the Iguazú Falls.
  • Day 2: Guided excursion to the Brazilian side of the falls.
  • Day 3: Guided excursion to the Argentine side of Iguazú Falls.
  • Day 4: Fly to Cuiabá in Mato Grosso, Brazil’s remote interior.
  • Day 5: Transfer to your lodge in the Pantanal wetlands.
  • Days 6-7: Wildlife-spotting expeditions from the lodge. Depending on local conditions, daily expeditions may include boat rides, walking trails and horse-riding through the Pantanal’s watery landscapes. You could visit a fazenda (farm) on the banks of a shimmering lake for sunset, when birds congregate for evening feeding with a raucous cacophony of sound. You may set off on an excursion by safari vehicle or boat to view wildlife in the crystal clear waters on a remote section of the Mutum river; seize an opportunity to fish for piranha, or take a boat trip to a small fishing community on the Cuiabá river.
  • Day 8: Fly to Manaus, Amazonia; transfer to riverside hotel.
  • Days 9-14: Cruise on the Amazon river and Rio Negro. A small (9 guest cabins), 3-storeyed traditional wooden Amazon riverboat, custom-built locally, the Tucano is beautifully constructed and finished using hard rosewood. It has a marvellous nautical atmosphere. As you glide slowly along the river, you will feel as though you are at one with the rhythms of the rainforest. The ship navigates north up the mosquito-free Rio Negro towards Rio Branco and the border with Colombia. There are a number of excursions every day, from dawn and late afternoon canoe trips to forest walks, piranha fishing and nocturnal wildlife spotting. Your guides will keep a list for you of species identified: you may well be surprised to see how long this will be by the end of your journey: several species of monkey, sloths, alligators, parrots, turtles, spiders, ants, snakes and a huge variety of birds.
  • You can swim in the river, visit isolated riverbank family farms and the evocative ruins of once prosperous rubber estates, all of which receive very few visitors but where the handful of people who live there will give you a warm welcome. The return journey follows the west bank. On the last day you drop anchor close to Manaus after witnessing the impressive spectacle of the Meeting of the Waters, where the dark tannin waters of the Rio Negro converge with the opaque brown water of the Amazon river proper.
  • Day 15: Optional city tour. Transfer to Manaus airport for international flight home.

This is just one example of a wildlife holiday to Brazil. Contact me for a tailor made quote including international flights and dates of your choice.

Pink flamingo flying

For the last 10 years we have been using Jules to arrange our holidays including trips to Brazil, India, Bhutan, Africa & Alaska. We have enjoyed travelling stress free, with someone else taking care of all arrangements. We would thoroughly recommend using Travel with Jules to anyone wanting to book a wildlife & sightseeing adventure.”

David and Maureen

Let us begin the journey that will create memories to last a lifetime.