Small group adventure
Jaguars and the Pantanal, Iguaçu Waterfalls

A fantastic opportunity particularly if you are travelling solo, for experiences usually only possible when travelling on a private tour for 2 on our Jaguars and Waterfalls. Travelling with a small group, you'll have incredible opportunities to see jaguars in the wild as detailed in this article with expert locals who work with Panthera. You'll also experience the Pantanal. Then it's onto the world-famous waterfalls, Iguaçu, to explore both the Brazilian and Argentinian sides of this 2.7km stretch of 275 waterfalls. At almost twice the width of Zimbawe's Victoria Falls and half the height again of Niagra, Iguaçu is a true world wonder.
Don't just take our word for it – Tell Tale trips to the Pantanal are Number 8 in Wanderlust magazine's "Top 50 Trips".

No Single Supplement (which is not conditional on sharing a room throughout – you'll have your own room except for 3 nights at the jaguar camp).

Day 1/Saturday (meal/s on plane)
Fly overnight from London Heathrow on a direct flight to Sao Paulo with British Airways.
We can add connecting flights from UK regional airports and Jersey at low or possibly no cost, ask us for details. It is also possible to upgrade your international flights to premium economy or business class.

Day 2/Sunday (dinner)
Morning landing in Sao Paulo and change planes for the Pantanal. This second flight will take just under 1.5 hours. Land in the city of Cuiabá and a short transfer to the hotel. Time to relax and unwind from the journey. Later on, a welcome dinner at one of Cuiabá's restaurants.
o/n Cuiaba hotel

Day 3/Monday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
You'll be picked up at the hotel by our wildlife guide and you'll head into the Pantanal. The drive will take a while on the bumpy Transpantaneira but it's more like a safari than a transfer. You'll see plenty of wildlife, capybara crossing the road and metre-long parrots and birds of prey flying overhead. You'll arrive at a comfortable lodge. Time to settle in and take a dip in the pool or explore the grounds, great wildlife-watching opportunities. Dinner at the lodge with the sounds of the jungle as your backdrop before a night safari. If you see red eyes glowing in the dark, it's just the caiman.
o/n Pousada Piuval

Day 4/Tuesday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
This morning, it's time for a walking safari. The area is famous for lakes filled with caiman, huge flocks of parakeets and Marsh deer (they uniquely have webbed feet). After dinner, you'll have a night safari.
o/n Pousada Piuval

Day 5/Wednesday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Morning walking safari at the ranch. Then time to pack up and you're heading further into the Pantanal to a 'jaguar camp'. There is nowhere in the Americas where you will see more wild animals and this part of the Pantanal has the highest density of jaguars in the world. Don't expect luxury in such a remote area of Brazil, and you have to be on twin share here (3 nights of entire tour), but it is comfortable enough with ensuite facilities and air conditioning (from solar panels and a generator) and even Wi-Fi. Staying here will give us the very best chance to spot jaguar (100% sightings across all Tell Tale trips in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, 2018 and 2019). You'll have lunch then spend the rest of the afternoon on a boat trip looking for jaguar and river otters. River otters can be as big as a man.
o/n jaguar camp

Day 6/Thursday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
An early start for a full day boat trip and safari. Fingers crossed for jaguar and Tell Tale favourites capybaras (giant guinea pigs) and black howler monkeys. Have a look at these fantastic photos taken by Tell Tale Traveller, Theresa Amarawansa.
o/n jaguar camp

Day 7/Friday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Boat trip up the river to a more remote area.
o/n jaguar camp

jaguars in the Pantanal

Is it BBC Planet Earth II? Or is it Julia Bond with her nifty little camcorder on a Tell Tale trip.

Posted by Tell Tale Travel on Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Footage of following a jaguar down the river, taken on this trip by Tell Tale Traveller, Julia Bond

Day 8/Saturday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Time to pack up then you're back onto the Transpantaneira to drive to a lodge. Afternoon's walking safari around the forest, although there is a pool here if you want a dip. After dinner, you'll have a night safari.
o/n Aymara Lodge

Otters in the Pantanal

Fish on a Friday? 'Little' Giant River Otters in the Pantanal. If you're watching Planet Earth on BBC Earth at the moment, you know whom to call! (Tell Tale Travel :-)) Thanks to Julia Bond for sharing her video.

Posted by Tell Tale Travel on Friday, 25 November 2016

Footage of Giant River Otters, taken on this trip by Julia Bond.

Day 9/Sunday (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Early morning start. You'll explore the lake by canoe, a great opportunity of the bird lovers. Then you'll go horse riding for a flavour of life in the Pantanal. Panteneiro cowboys are descendants of Portuguese who mingled with Brazil's native Indians and live their lives in a 200-year tradition. Pantanal horses are very easy to ride. Then time to pack up and drive back to Cuiabá.
o/n hotel in Cuiabá

Day 10/Monday (breakfast)
From Cuiaba airport, fly to Foz do Iguaçu (via a hub airport such as Sao Paulo or Brasilia). Transfer to hotel and time to have a dip in the pool, relax or wander around town.
Evening – option to join dinner at a restaurant in Foz do Iguaçu.
o/n hotel in Foz do Iguaçu

Day 11/Tuesday (breakfast)
Our guide in Iguaçu will take to the Argentinian side of the falls, which is set in deep jungle so it's great for wildlife spotting. When you arrive you'll take a train to the Devil's Throat, where the river thunders over the horse-shoe shaped precipice and down on to the rocks 74m below. Look out for the great dusky swifts, which dart in and out of the cascades – one of our favourite sights.
Evening – option to join dinner.
o/n hotel in Foz do Iguaçu

Day 12/Wednesday (breakfast)
Our guide in Iguaçu will take you to the Brazilian side of the falls. You'll take in the panoramic view and then venture across the walkway that feels like it's right on the very edge of the falls. You'll also visit the bird park in this area (one of our personal favourites), home to lots of tropical birds, including some nearly extinct ones. Evening – option to join dinner.
o/n hotel in Foz do Iguaçu

Footage of Iguaçu Falls taken with a drone.

Day 13/Thursday (breakfast and meal/s on plane)
Breakfast and pack up or have a dip in the pool depending on flight timings on the day. Transfer to Iguaçu airport and fly to Sao Paulo or Rio de Janeiro, connecting to a flight with British Airways, direct to London Heathrow.

Day 14/Friday
Arrival back at London Heathrow.

Upcoming Departures:
Please contact us for dates and prices.

  • International flights from London with British Airways in economy class, as well as flight from Sao Paulo to Cuiaba and flight from Iguaçu to Sao Paulo
  • Domestic flight/s between Cuiaba and Iguaçu
  • Accommodation on single room basis except for 3 nights at jaguar camp (which are twin share)
  • Meals as specified
  • Activities
  • Guides
  • Entrance fees

    Add on flights from UK regional airports and Jersey – ask us for details
    Upgrade on international flights – ask us to check

    It is also possible to book excluding international flights. You will need to make arrangements to meet the group in Cuiabá on Day 2 and your tour will end in Iguaçu on Day 13. (Internal flights on Day 10 will be included).

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    Jaguars by Fred Barrington
    Giant Anteater by Fred Barrington
    Brazilian Cowboy by Fred Barrington
    Black Collared Hawk by Marjorie Socha
    Jabiru stork by Fred Barrington
    Iguacu Falls by Hannah Wilson
    Photos by Tell Tale Travellers: (these were taken on previous special departures for solo travellers)
    Jaguar Mother and Cubs, Anteater, Pantaneiro 'Cowboy' and Jabiru Stork by Fred Barrington; Black-Collared Hawk by Marjorie Socha; Jaguar watching Red-Billed Cardinals by Clare Maletroit; Iguaçu Falls by Hannah Wilson.