Thursday, November 30, 2023

How one can See Jaguars within the Pantanal, Brazil – Wild Junket Journey Journey Weblog

Final Up to date on Could 19, 2023 by Nellie Huang

The Pantanal boasts the very best focus of wildlife in South America. Right here’s an in depth information on the best way to do a Pantanal jaguar safari, by Dave & Becca from Carry Us That Horizon.

The Pantanal is usually outshone by the Amazon rainforest, the truth is, the Pantanal might be Brazil’s best-kept secret! The Pantanal is an immense freshwater wetland which expands and contracts with the seasons. It’s residence to among the world’s most iconic animals, together with the inexperienced anaconda, large anteaters, howler monkeys, capybara and its crowning jewel, the elusive jaguar.

The Pantanal is undoubtedly the most effective place to see jaguars in Brazil. In truth, we are able to safely say the Pantanal is among the greatest wildlife locations on the earth! Individuals usually steer away from Pantanal and in direction of Mato Grosso du Sul as they’re involved by the worth tag; this information will present you it doesn’t have to interrupt the financial institution to see jaguars in Brazil.

pantanal jaguar safari brazil - jaguars in pantanal

Pantanal Jaguar Safari

The place is the Pantanal?

Round 80% of the Pantanal is in Brazil, break up between the states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso du Sul. Nonetheless, resulting from its immense measurement, it additionally spills into Paraguay and Bolivia. The Pantanal’s measurement is estimated at 42 million acres (in response to WWF); To place that in perspective, it’s bigger than 29 of the 50 US states, together with New York and Florida.

Over 1 million folks go to the Pantanal annually, however the majority of those guests head to the state of Mato Grosso du Sul within the south. Accessed through town of Campo Grande, Mato Gross du Sul is simpler to achieve and provides a wider vary of lodging and has higher infrastructure.

Bonito, in south Pantanal, is an eco-tourism hotspot the place you possibly can partake in organised actions like snorkelling the crystal-clear waters of Rio da Prata or visiting the macaw heritage reserve of Buraco das Araras. As in comparison with Paraguay and Bolivia, the Brazilian a part of the Pantanal is by far the most effective geared up for eco-tourism. 

pantanal jaguar safari - pantanal river

The Pantanal Map

While the south could be plenty of enjoyable, in case you are decided to see wild jaguars in Brazil, it’s price making the additional effort to journey down the 145km grime highway named the Transpantaneira freeway to Porto Jofre. Occurring a Pantanal jaguar safari is all the time an journey, one that usually includes treacherous, lengthy drives and discomfort, however it’s properly price it in our opinion. Should you go to Porto Jofre through the dry season, you’re virtually assured to identify the Pantanal jaguar!

Should you’re planning a visit to Brazil, make sure to learn my 2-week Brazil itinerary.


Finest Time to Go to Pantanal

The very best time to go to the Pantanal is within the dry season, between the months of July and October. There’s much less rain and decrease possibilities of flooding; 80% of the plains recedes again to the principle rivers.

August and September, specifically, see the very best variety of Pantanal jaguar sightings. With the water receding, the caiman (the principle prey of the jaguars) inhabitants is concentrated to smaller areas. It’s thus a lot simpler to foretell the place you possibly can spot jaguars within the Pantanal. The temperatures throughout this season vary from round 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F).

Some extra advantages of visiting the Pantanal through the dry season are that the climate is much less humid and there are much less bugs. Additionally, the principle highway into Porto Jofre is 145km of grime highway and are often solely satisfactory through the dry season. 

jaguar attacking caiman - pantanal jaguar safari

pantanal jaguar safari - sunset in pantanal brazil

The place do Jaguars Dwell?

Jaguars love water and so are generally present in rainforests, savannahs and swamps. Traditionally jaguars could possibly be discovered on the Americas anyplace from mid-Argentina all the best way as much as Southwest USA. Sadly, since 1880, jaguars have misplaced greater than half of their territory, primarily resulting from unlawful poaching and deforestation. 

Though they do nonetheless have small pockets in Central America and as far north as Mexico, it’s estimated over half of the inhabitants of untamed jaguars stay in Brazil. The Amazon basin is the final main stronghold of jaguars within the wild. Nonetheless, it’s extremely tough to identify jaguars within the Amazon rainforest because of the dense jungle. Due to this fact, the most effective place for to see jaguars in Brazil is the Pantanal, particularly the Cuiabá River close to Porto Jofre.

pantanal jaguar safari -

How one can Go to the Pantanal

Due to how distant the Pantanal is, you’ll almost definitely have to fly there. It’s potential to run a sequence of long-distance buses, however it should take without end and it could usually work out dearer. Regardless of the title Cuiabá Worldwide Airport – Marechal Rondon, there are at present no worldwide air routes.  

There are a great deal of flights every day (a couple of an hour!) between Sáo Paulo and Cuiabá. The flight time is round 2 hours 15 minutes, with costs round $100 return.  Flights from Rio de Janeiro to Cuiabá are round 2 hours 40 minutes and costs are round double that of flying from Sáo Paulo. Verify for flights to Cuiaba.

If you’re planning to go to each northern and southern Pantanal you do have the choice of an 11-hour bus, which could be achieved in a single day for round $50. Alternatively, you possibly can fly between Campo Grande and Cuiabá, which takes simply over an hour and prices round $70. After getting reached Cuiabá, the next move will enormously rely upon whether or not you decide on visiting Pantanal by way of an organised tour or self-driving. Extra on this beneath.

pantanal jaguar safari - boat cruising on river

Do You Want a Pantanal Jaguar Safari Tour?

To see jaguars within the Pantanal, it’s essential to both guide an organised tour or self-drive. Reserving an organised Pantanal jaguar safari usually includes much more cash, although all the things might be taken care of for you, together with transport and loding. Most significantly, you’ll have a wildlife information who can spot the jaguars for you. Self-driving is extra appropriate for adventurous vacationers who’re eager on treading your individual path.

No matter which choice you select, you’re virtually assured to see jaguars within the Pantanal in case you go to within the dry season. Listed here are the issues to contemplate between self-drive and an organised Pantanal tour:

  • Value – Let’s begin with the plain one, in case you self-drive the Pantanal it’s prone to be at the very least half the worth!
  • Pantanal jaguar safari itinerary – Should you be part of an organised tour your itinerary is ready out for you, however by self-driving the Pantanal you’re accountable for your individual future.
  • Stress – An organised tour is definitely going to be the least worrying, you solely have one moderately than a number of bookings to make and as soon as you’re there you’ll be picked up from the airport and ferried from A to B and again once more, with out the necessity to consider it.
  • Communication – Pantanal ecotourism is comparatively new; you will see that a lot of the lodges within the Pantanal have little English subsequently becoming a member of an organised tour will provide you with the good thing about having somebody whom you possibly can simply talk with. 
  • Details about the animals – Occurring a tour, you’ll have entry to a wildlife information who can present every kind of data on the wildlife. 
  • Variety of folks in your Pantanal jaguar safari – One vital factor that you simply discover on visiting the Pantanal is that almost all organised excursions exit in teams of between 4-10. Getting that excellent photograph of Pantanal jaguar could be tough with half a dozen folks in your manner!

In abstract, the deciding issue might be how a lot cash you must spend in your journey. So so long as you’re completely satisfied to pay for it, many tour corporations will tailor a personal journey to go well with you, however self-driving is the extra adventurous, budget-friendly choice.

Pantanal Jaguar Safari: How to See Jaguars in the Pantanal, Brazil

Organised Pantanal Tour Choices

Earlier than opting to self-drive our Pantanal jaguar safari journey we did analysis into the totally different tour choices, right here is the data we discovered and a abstract of what every Pantanal tour contains:

Viator – ‘Following the footsteps of the Jaguar’

  • Tour size – 6 days
  • Tour price – Ranging from $4,212 per individual
  • Transport – decide up and drop off from Cuiabá airport
  • Lodging – 3 nights in lodging close to Poconé (e.g – Pousada Rio Claro/Pousada Piuval). 2 nights in Porto Jofre at Resort Pantanal North 
  • Safari excursions – all safari excursions in group sizes of a most of 10 folks
  • Meals – full board day by day


Wildlife Pantanal Excursions 

  • Tour size – 4 days
  • Tour price – $2,740 per individual
  • Transport – decide up and drop off from Cuiabá airport
  • Lodging – 1 evening in Poconé (Piuval lodge) space and a pair of nights in Porto Jofre (lodging not specified)
  • Safari excursions – Personal
  • Meals – full board day by day


Pantanal Trackers

  • Tour size – 4 days
  • Tour price – $1,750 per individual
  • Transport – decide up and drop off from Cuiabá airport
  • Lodging – 1 evening in Poconé space and a pair of nights in Porto Jofre (lodging not specified)
  • Safari excursions – Personal
  • Meals – full board day by day


pantanal jaguar safari - jaguar by the river

How one can Do a Self-drive Pantanal Jaguar Safari 

We’ve tried and examined this selection and would 100% advocate Pantanal self-drive for anybody wishing to avoid wasting cash and tackle the journey. 

Should you select to self-drive with your individual Pantanal jaguar safari itinerary, all automobile rent corporations function from Cuiabá airport, and so they additionally provide a group shuttle service. Upon accumulating your automobile it will likely be an hour and a half straightforward drive to Poconé, primarily on one straight tarmacked highway. In Poconé you possibly can top off on drinks and snacks, it should price you rather more as soon as you’re previous Poconé! After buying provides, ensure you fill your automobile to the brim, there are not any extra gasoline stations after this level. 

In Brazil a lot of the rent vehicles function on multi gas, both gasoline or ethanol. Be certain to refill with gasoline in Poconé because it offers rather more miles to the gallon. As soon as you’re crammed up there may be one highway heading into the Pantanal, the Transpantaneira freeway. About 5km outdoors of Poconé the tarmac finishes and the journey begins!

Tip: It’s a good suggestion to obtain, even in case you are paying to make use of your telephone in Brazil as there isn’t a lot sign on the Pantanal. Should you obtain and the suitable map you need to use this offline.

pantanal jaguar safari

How one can Lease a Automotive in Pantanal

Relating to hiring a automobile for visiting Pantanal you don’t want a 4×4, however you want one with a excessive floor clearance, this is because of protecting 145km on unsealed roads. When doing our analysis and chatting with the lodge house owners they beneficial any of the next automobile fashions; VW Gol, Renault Duster, Fiat Uno or Toyota Sienna.

We opted for a Renault Duster, and it was excellent for the job. We all the time guide our automobile rent by way of Uncover Automobiles as they’ve constantly given us the most effective customer support and greatest charges. Automotive rent approx. $60 per day.

Seek for automobile rent!

renting a car in pantanal

Is It Straightforward to Drive within the Pantanal?

To get to the Pantanal, it’s essential to navigate the grime highway, the Transpantaneira, for roughly 147 kilometers (91 miles) from town of Poconé to Porto Jofre. The highway could be difficult to navigate, particularly through the wet season when it turns into muddy and waterlogged. In drier seasons, the highway circumstances are typically higher, however it could nonetheless have tough patches and potholes.

The Transpantaneira is a distant route, and there are restricted companies obtainable alongside the best way. Chances are you’ll discover a couple of small lodges, farmhouses, or relaxation areas, however don’t count on frequent entry to facilities equivalent to gas stations, eating places, or restore retailers. It’s advisable to make sure you have sufficient gas, meals, and water provides earlier than embarking on the journey.

It’s comparatively simple to navigate since it’s a single highway main from Poconé to Porto Jofre. Nonetheless, it’s important to concentrate to signage and markers as they are often sparse in some areas. Having a GPS or a dependable map could be helpful to keep away from getting misplaced. Total, driving on the Transpantaneira freeway could be an adventurous and rewarding expertise. 

pantanal jaguar safari - self drive in pantanal

Is It Protected to Do a Self-Drive Jaguar Safari?

Whereas it may be an unbelievable expertise to see jaguars of their pure habitat, it’s essential to train warning and respect their area. Jaguars are wild animals, and it’s vital to take care of a secure distance to keep away from any potential conflicts or accidents.

Should you select to self-drive, it’s beneficial to have some prior expertise in off-road driving and be ready for potential challenges. You can be within the security of your automobile when recognizing jaguars, however you’ll have to know what to do in case you break down.

Nonetheless, it’s vital to notice that guided excursions with skilled native operators are a safer choice for exploring the Pantanal, particularly in case you are unfamiliar with the world. 

cruising the river - jaguars in pantanal

The place to Keep within the Pantanal

Lodging in Poconé

We stayed at Pouso Alegre Lodge and extremely advocate them. The rooms had been easy however comfy and there was loads of actions on the lodge. The associated fee per evening was $190 per evening for two folks sharing, full board. Listed here are the costs for actions organised by the lodge:

  • FREE – walks and use of trails, roads and methods and use of 24-meter remark tower.
  • Horseback trip, R$140 (US$28) per individual / 2 hours.
  • Evening safari is R$240 (US$48) for all.
  • Strolling safari with an area is R$100 (US$20) for all.

Lodging in Porto Jofre

We completely loved our keep at Pousada Porto Jofre Puma Lodge. The associated fee for the keep there may be $390 per evening for two folks sharing. That included a full day river safari for each full day spent in Porto Jofre and full board meals.

pantanal jaguar safari - toucan spotted in pantanal

Value of Pantanal Jaguar Safari

Whole Value for Self-driving (Costs beneath are primarily based on 2 folks):

  • Self-drive = $2,210
  • Organised tour = $8,424

The overall price of our 6-day self-drive jaguar safari added as much as a complete of US$2,210 for 2 of us.

The costs for organised Pantanal jaguar excursions often vary from $2,000 to $5000 or extra per individual. These excursions usually present lodging, meals, transportation, guided actions (together with jaguar recognizing), and generally extra wildlife excursions equivalent to birdwatching or canoeing.

To place it into perspective, evaluating what we spent with the Viator (the most cost effective worldwide tour firm) 6-day safari, you’d save over $6.000!

pantanal jaguar safari - jaguars in pantanal

Jaguar Enjoyable Information

  • Jaguars like to swim, in contrast to a lot of their feline family, who keep away from water, jaguars have tailored to their moist environments to be extraordinarily good swimmers.
  • Jaguars are the threerd largest cat on the earth, and they’re the one massive cat that may be discovered within the Americas.
  • Jaguars in Pantanal could be as much as twice the scale of jaguars present in Central America. Males within the Pantanal can weigh as much as a hefty 120kg (265lbs); their humungous measurement is required to take down prey equivalent to giant caiman.
  • Jaguars will not be the identical as leopards. Though they give the impression of being strikingly just like leopards, they aren’t the identical. The primary distinction in look is that jaguars have a spot inside their spots, whereas leopards don’t.
  • Jaguars have essentially the most highly effective chunk of any massive cat. The title jaguar has come from the indigenous phrase ‘yaguar’ which implies ‘he who kills with one leap’. Their chunk pressure is round 1,500-2,000 PSI which is robust sufficient to chunk by way of a caiman’s cranium or a turtle’s shell!
  • Jaguars are randy! When breeding jaguars can mate as much as 100 occasions per day.
  • There is just one species of the jaguar. Though there are 34 sub-populations, 25 of that are classed as endangered.
  • A black jaguar and a noticed one are the identical species. Typically folks seek advice from a black jaguar as a black panther. Nonetheless, a black panther isn’t a species in any respect, it’s both a leopard or a jaguar with extra melanin. In truth, black jaguars have the identical markings as noticed ones, it’s simply tougher to see! 

pantanal jaguar safari - jaguar up close

What to Pack in your Pantanal Journey

  • Loads of money – Be certain to withdraw money in Cuiabá, there are not any ATMs in Porto Jofre. We paid for a few of our lodging in money. The one different factor you’ll need money for is drinks, ideas & and further actions.
  • Portuguese phrase guide – It’s greatest to study some primary Portuguese: “olá” (hey), “bom dia” (good morning), “por favor” (please), “obrigada/o” (thanks). In case your Portuguese isn’t nice, obtain the Portuguese dictionary on Google translate, as you gained’t have web for essentially the most half in Pantanal.
  • SPF 50+ solar cream – You can be spending some lengthy hours out on the river and there’s a great probability you’ll not have any shade. 
  • Solar hat – While spending many hours on the river you will need to defend your head. It’s straightforward to get sunstroke in case you don’t put on ample solar safety.
  • LifeStraw – Not all lodges provide free consuming water in Pantanal. We completely swear by our LifeStraw Go filter water bottle! Not solely does it scale back plastic waste, it should save loads of cash on the highway as you possibly can drink the faucet water (or every other water for that matter) even in locations the place it isn’t suggested.
  • Lengthy sleeve, gentle weight t-shirt – If you’re fair-skinned and burn simply it’s a good suggestion to put on lengthy sleeves in your days on the boat in Porto Jofre, as talked about above, you’ll be on the river for round 8 hours with little shade.
  • Light-weight mountain climbing pants – We opted for zip-off mountain climbing trousers moderately than conventional safari apparel to provide us the choice to show our legs for durations of time to chill down.
  • Digital camera – Should you don’t have already got a digital camera you like, take a look into canon EOS r5 – r7 vary. We didn’t have one however a man we met visiting Pantanal had one and it’s completely superior. They’re dear however they’ve an animal eye autofocus which can means your footage might be superb.
  • Pantanal’s Wildlife Guidebook This guidebook is an absolute should in case you are self-driving to assist with figuring out the animals. We had nice enjoyable with this and located it actually helpful when persevering with our travels within the Southern Pantanal and Bolivia.
  • Torch – Should you can take a high-powered torch, it will likely be invaluable on evening safari & additionally as a backup for the lower than dependable electrical energy in Porto Jofre.

pantanal jaguar safari - spotting animals with camera

Get pleasure from Your Pantanal Jaguar Safari!

Thanks for studying this far. I hope this information has helped you intend your individual Pantanal jaguar safari. When you have any questions on seeing jaguars in Pantanal, please go away them within the feedback beneath and I might be completely satisfied to answer to any questions you may have.

Learn my articles on Brazil and wildlife beneath:

Disclaimer: This submit incorporates affiliate hyperlinks i.e. in case you guide a keep by way of one among my hyperlinks, I get a small fee at NO EXTRA COST to you. Thanks in your help!

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pantanal jaguar safari - how to see jaguars in pantanal brazil

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