Wildlife holidays in Brazil, tailormade

“Brazil’s rich and diverse wildlife is the focus of this trailor made trip to the Amazon rainforest and the Pantanal, with time to explore exciting Rio, too.”


Rio de Janeiro guided tour and free day | Sugarloaf Mountain and Corcovado | Amazon rainforest | forest trails, observation tower and canoeing | Pantanal | horse riding, river cruises, canoeing and guided walking safaris | boat trip on Cuiaba River to spot jaguars | Cuiaba | Sao Paulo

Description of Wildlife holidays in Brazil, tailormade

This tailor made wildlife holiday in Brazil explores some of the best places for viewing fauna, flora and natural attractions.

Our tour begins in Rio de Janeiro with a visit to the statue of Christ the Redeemer rising above Corcovado Mountain and offering spectacular views of the city and surroundings. During a full day guided tour there will be the opportunity to visit Corcovado and visit Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain) by cable car.

Then it's on to our lodge in the southern Amazon. We spend three nights here, exploring the rainforest on foot and by boat. There is a large bird (550+ species) and butterfly (2,000+ species) list. There is also excellent mammal fauna and mammals often found in the surrounding forest include Brazilian tapir (usually seen along river banks), capybara, anteaters, opossums, river otters, giant otters (on longer river trips), brocket deer, agoutis, tayra and paca. There are also seven species of primates: night monkey, dusky titi monkey, brown capuchin, red-handed howler monkey, white-whiskered spider monkey, and the endemic red-nosed bearded saki monkey.

We head into the Pantanal, the world's largest seasonal wetland, which covers part of Brazil, Paraguay and Bolivia. During the dry season (mid-April to late September) the water drains from the wetlands leaving dry grassland, small wooded islands and fish filled pools where animals and birds congregate to drink and feed. This makes for incredible wildlife viewing (think Amazon rainforest without the trees!) and during the dry season many of the 700 species of birds, 100 mammal species and 80 reptile species can be seen. These include the metre high Jabiru stork, symbol of the Pantanal, hyacinth macaws, anacondas, jaguars, giant and collared anteaters, giant otters, about 600,000 capybara (at around 50kg they are the world’s largest rodent), and between 10 and 35 million caiman (South American crocodilians)!

We spend three nights in the heart of the northern Pantanal at two different lodges. Activities include horseriding, hikes, canoe rides, photographic safaris and animal night spotting.

At Jaguar Lodge, we'll focus our efforts on spotting jaguars from our boat trips on the Cuiaba River. You'll be pleased to hear we mostly have great success!

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

01273 823 700 Calling from outside the UK?

Departure information

This trip can be tailormade at a time to suit you except March & April, and can be adapted to suit your interests, budget and requirements as necessary
Dietary requirements:
We can cater for vegetarian and vegan diets.

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

In order to protect against the ever increasing ‘arc of deforestation’ to the south and add to the corridor of protected areas in Southern Amazonia rainforest is purchased by the owners of Rio Cristalino Jungle Lodge as it becomes available to manage as a Private Natural Heritage Reserve. The land the lodge is built on and some of the surrounding forest (a total of 700 ha) is in private ownership, and 7,150 ha of rainforest on the opposite side of the Cristalino River is currently being purchased. Including in the cost of the stay at the lodge is a $25 per person ‘wildlife preservation fee’ paid to the Cristalino Ecological Foundation, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the conservation and development of sustainable practises in the southern Amazon.

For every person that travels with the company, it plants trees through The Travel Forest initiative. Depending on where they plant and the requirement of the specific area, they plant either indigenous trees or a mix of indigenous and non-native species. Planting non-native seedlings may seem counter-intuitive but doing this can often help any remaining indigenous forest from being cut down (e.g. for fuel) as some non-native trees grow much more quickly than indigenous types. They particularly aim to save ancient or older indigenous forest, through offering an alternative option for fuel requirements of local communities. In addition to this benefit, their Travel Forest initiative helps with such things as planting for water-course retention, soil erosion, shade and even food – all depending on what is planted and where. They have planted almost 100,000 trees to date in various degraded locations including the Andean mountains in Peru, northern Tanzania and Malawi. This has always been done in conjunction with the local communities who plant and then tend the seedlings. Trees are far more important to the health of this planet (and us) than many people imagine. This global Travel Forest initiative can and does make a big difference.

As part of our commitment to the environment we have a programme to plant trees in Tanzania, Malawi, Peru etc. through the company’s foundation. This was set up to help alleviate poverty, conserve endangered wildlife, and protect earth’s environmental diversity for the benefit of us all. All the projects have a link with tourism in some way, and many benefit the wider world as well as local people, through conserving areas of natural beauty. We don’t just look overseas when considering the environment, even at the office the team planted tress in the fields surrounding the buildings to celebrate the company’s 21st birthday in 2019.

As a company we think about our partners overseas carefully. The company ethos is to use properties around the globe that have a similar ethical stance to ourselves. If they can use local suppliers for their provisions, be it food or furnishings then they do, and all offer a variety of menus including vegetarian and vegan/plant-based options. Our partners support the use of solar/renewable energies, and many are looking at ways of switching their current supplies to more eco-friendly options in order to be more efficient. The use of solar, water and air are options in use or being explored, as well as grey water run offs. Energy efficient appliances and practices, card operated in room lighting, low energy bulbs, and a change in laundry practices, are all in operation, and show just a few of the initiatives used. Our partners also use local staff within their properties. Many live on-site in seasonal properties for example reducing the travel emissions of the company, many come from the local villages and communities surrounding the properties. This includes everyone from house keeping to management and the guides that are from the locale.

Due to the nature of the holidays provided by the company, it is impossible to eliminate all flights but where possible we use the minimum flight hours an itinerary can operate with. The packages we have on offer include rail portions in some areas, which keep emissions low, many walking options and shared transportation.


The Impacts of this Trip

Our local operator in Brazil reinforces practices considered fundamental for environmental conservation and works to inform visitors, local staff and the population in general. They are one of the country leaders in ecotourism and one of the company directors is president of the Brazilian Bureau of Ecotourism. The company was founded to supply nature studies trips for students in the preserved areas of the country such as the Amazon and Pantanal. Though the company now also has an incoming tourism department there is still a very active study trips department. They strongly believe that these trips should promote the sensitivity of students towards nature preservation, present and promote models and techniques of sustainable exploration of natural resources and stimulate the sponsorship of local projects. The contact between urban students and local communities brings a possibility of development of other social and economic relations that value cultures and, at the same time, their peoples.


2 Reviews of Wildlife holidays in Brazil, tailormade

4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 08 Nov 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Each section was a highlight in different ways - Iguassu Falls, chance sighting of jaguar in Pantanal away from main spotting area, architecture of Brasilia by night and lakeside restaurant with local families, knowledgeable and interesting local guides.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Everywhere (even in cities) loo paper is put in bin beside toilet and not in toilet.
"Normal" European adaptors don't work. Need to be 2 thin pins. Sometimes socket inset so pins didn't reach but hotels managed to find multiplug adaptors to connect. Very efficient and easy internal flights but early starts often needed to make the most of each day

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Benefitted local people by mainly staying in locally owned and run accommodation and using local guides.
Environmental impact - Brazil is such a large country that several internal flights had to be made, but almost all flights full and modern planes.
Tourism in Pantanal (and elsewhere) encourages landowners to maintain environment to sustain wildlife.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Reviewed on 31 Oct 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Probably the falls at Iguacu. I have been to Niagra and Victoria Falls, but Iguacu was breathtaking. Also it goes without saying that the river trips to look for jaguar, giant river otters, capybara etc in the Pantanal were wonderful. All the excitement of a land safari, but in a motor boat!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Learn some Portuguese phrases - very little English is spoken or understood outside of the big hotels.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I hope so. All the local people in the Pantanal seemed to be very aware of the need to protect the environment, but they were also aware of the struggle to convince local farmers/ranchers to do likewise.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Read the operator's response here:

Christine, we’re so pleased you loved your time in Brazil. The Pantanal is particularly special isn’t it, and as for the Iguassu Falls … wow.
Thanks again for travelling with us.

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