Pantanal ENG

Join us to the Pantanal

in 2020!


About the tour

During the trip we will stay comfortably at three different ranches and from there we will make hikes, boat tours and safaris by car to get close to Pantanal's fascinating wildlife. To maximize our chances of seeing jaguars we will also stay in a simple hotel just off the river Sao Lourenco in the Pantanal's absolute core area. The hotel is a short boat ride from the best places to see jaguars and from here we will take our boats and go out at dawn to explore the river system. We have chosen to limit the number of participants to eight people. There will be only four people per boat as we search for jaguars and other exciting species. This allows for a lot of time with the guides, good photo opportunities and the possibility of flexibility in the program.

Our philosophy is that our tours should contribute to the preservation of the nature in the areas we travel to. As a consequence of that, we hire local guides and accommodation to benefit the local economy. Of course, our top priority is that you as a traveler, will get an unforgettable experience. As a result of that you will hopefully spread the message about the importance of preserving species and nature. Our ambition is that animals should be worth more alive than dead.

About the destination

Our journey goes to the Pantanal, one of South America's most fascinating nature areas with a unique variety of species. What makes this area so special is the excellent photo opportunities that you find in the open environments. We will explore these, either on foot over the savannahs or in the comfort of a boat on one of the Pantanal's many rivers. Outside Africa, there is no other area that is comparable to the Pantanal in terms of density of larger animals. Nowhere in the world is there a better chance to photograph the normally so shy jaguar, South America's largest feline, than right in the Pantanal. The special feature here is that jaguars are very tolerant of the presence of people after many years of absence of hunting and it provides unique photo opportunities. And that’s only the top of the ice berg. Here lays caimans side by side on the best beaches, small herds of capybaras are basking in the morning sun and the giant otters plays in the river. Add to that more than 400 species of species of birds and you understand why the camera's memory card quickly fills up during a trip in this area!

The world's largest wetland

Pantanal consists of a mosaic of wetlands, forests and drier savannah-like areas. Pantanal stretches over three countries, the majority located in Brazil (70%), while the remainder is in Bolivia (20%) and Paraguay (10%). During the rainy season the water rises two to five meters in the rivers and 80% of the Pantanal become flooded in the world's largest wetland, nearly 1000 km long and 500 km wide! The annual floods bring nutrient-rich sludge that makes the area extremely productive and that is the reason the area has South America's highest densities of larger animals. There are more than ten million caimans that in the dry season is concentrated in rivers and in the remaining water holes where we have good chances to view these crocodile relatives in close-up. During the dry season, a lot of wildlife are attracted to the remaining water bodies, especially the jaguar's favorite prey capybaras, a 60 kg heavy rodent grazing on the beaches and in the water. If we are really lucky we can get the opportunity to experience how the jaguar sneaks up on a caiman or capybara along the river's shores!

Outstanding diversity

Pantanal is also home to a number of other iconic mammals which we will try to see during the trip. These include the giant otter, now endangered because of hunting but have a safe haven in the Pantanal. Seeing the giant anteater strolling out across the savannah in search of termites belong to the absolute highlights and with great luck we will also see South America's largest mammals, the 250 kg tapir.

Among the many species of birds, there are two species that really stands out among the rest. The first is the world's largest stork, the characteristic black-white-red jabiru stork, a rare species in other parts of its range. The other species is the deep blue hyacinth macaw, an endangered macaw of which the majority of the world population is to be found in the Pantanal. But there is also loads of other interesting species. We hope to see the ostrich-like greater rhea, bare-faced currasow, black skimmers that hunt along the surface of the water and the almost cartoon-like toco toucan with its big orange beak. Snail kite, a raptor specialist on snails is often seen sweeping along the beaches accompanied by black collared hawks and several species of kingfishers. We will also try to find the extremely well-camouflaged great potoo.

Besides caimans we have a chance to view other charismatic reptiles like the yellow anaconda and caiman lizard, a big beautiful lizard specialized in snails. With such a large density of large animals and birds, it is easy to forget the rest, but with 3500 species of plants, there is much to discover also here. Among wetland plants, it is probably the giant water lily that fascinates most with their meter large leaves. There is also a great diversity of insects, especially colorful butterflies and dragonflies.

Bring many memory cards for your camera and see you in the Pantanal wetlands!


Tour information

Date: Announced at a later date

Maximum group size: 8 people

Cost includes:

  • Meals as stated in the itinerary.
  • Two tour leaders and two local guides
  • Accommodation in shared double room (single room for supplement fee)

Cost does not include:

  • International and domestic airtickets.
  • Trip cancellation & Travel insurance
  • Passport and Visa fees
  • Soft and alcoholic drinks


Send an email with your contact information to

We will then come back with more information.

You are welcome to contact us if you have questions about the trip.

How to register for the trip and our travel terms can be found here.

Bergman Nature Tours has

protection in place to refund

your payments to ensure

your repatriation in the

event that it they become

insolvent at Kammarkollegiet.

The combination of travel services offered to you is a package within the meaning of Directive (EU) 2015/2302. As a travel agent, we are obliged to provide information about the traveler's rights and the travel guarantee that is valid for the trip. This information should be provided through a special standard information form.

The combination of travel services offered to you is a package within the meaning of Directive (EU) 2015/2302. Therefore, you will benefit from all EU rights applying to packages. Bergman Nature Tours will be fully responsible for the proper performance of the package as a whole. Additionally, as required by law, Bergman Nature Tours has/have protection in place to refund your payments and, where transport is included in the package, to ensure your repatriation in the event that it becomes/they become insolvent. More information on key rights under Directive (EU) 2015/2302 here.

Tour leaders

Karl-Olof Bergman has a PhD in conservation biology and has travelled to many of the world's biodiversity hotspots, always bringing his camera. He is an associate professor at Linköping university  and he passionately shares his deep knowledge in ecology and conservation biology.

Björn Johansson is a biologist now working as a professional photographer.

A great passion for tropical ecology has taken him to many of the world´s remote rainforests. He has also lead photography workshops and courses for beginners as well as more advanced photographers.

Day 1

We meet up at the airport in Cuiaba. We head south, passing the town of Pocone. The adventure really starts when we reach the Transpantaneira, the straight dirt road that was supposed to be built right through the Pantanal, but now ends in Porto Jofre. We follow it straight into the northern Pantanal. Already here we have good opportunities to start photographing. Surrounded by vast wetlands, we have great chances to see an abundance of birds including jabiru, snail kite, various herons and also the greater rhea. Perhaps we see our first caimans and capybaras. Along the road we will stop when we find especially interesting sites and species. Todays trip gives us a good introduction into this unique environment.

After a few hours of travel we arrive to Pousada Rio Claro, where we spend our first two nights. Before dinner there is time to look around or relax in the rooms. The ranch has a rich bird life and literally on the stairs outside your room there is good chance to take the image of the day. The tip is to always have your camera ready!

Accommodation: Pousada Rio Claro

Meals included: Lunch and dinner

To look forward to this day: The excitement in the stomach when we go into the Pantanal and experience the first large jabirus hunting frogs and snakes next to the road.

Day 2

Pousada Rio Claro, located a stone's throw from one of the many rivers in the Pantanal, is an excellent starting point for boat trips. After breakfast we head out on the river. From the boat there are good photo opportunities. South America's largest kingfisher, the ringed kingfisher, hunts along the river. Different parrot species, American darter and black-collared hawk are also often seen here.

After lunch we explore the surroundings on foot with our guide, hopefully encountering many new species such as greater rhea, orange-backed troupial and bare-faced currassow with its remarkable "haircut". The afternoon is ended with another boat ride on the river.

Accommodation: Pousada Rio Claro

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for this day: That a black-collared hawk swoops down in front of us and grabs a fish out of the river with its claws.

Day 3

After breakfast, we leave Pousada Rio Claro. Perhaps we encounter pantaneiros along the way, Pantanal's own cowboys on horseback driving their large cattle herds. After a short journey on the Transpantaneira we arrive at the horse ranch Pouso Alegre. Having made ourselves at home in the rooms and had lunch, we head out on a first game drive. In addition to large amounts of caimans and capybaras the surroundings give good chances to see crab-eating fox, greater rhea and hyacinth macaw. If we are lucky, more seldom seen species like tapir and giant anteater appear in front of our cameras.

Accomodation: Pouso Alegre

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for this day: The impressive sight of large amounts of caimans squeezed together in the last pools of water during the dry season.

Day 4

We spend one more day to explore the area around the ranch on foot or in the car. We hope to include the toco toucan, nanday parakeet and the small black-tailed marmoset to our list. If we are really lucky and have sharp eyes, we can spot the incredibly well camouflaged great potoo.

Accomodation: Pouso Alegre

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for this day: A giant anteater wandering the savannah in search of termites.

Day 5

We spend one more day to explore the area around the ranch on foot or in the car. We have good possibilities to customize our excursions for what is possible to see and the interests of the group.

Accomodation: Pouso Alegre

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for this day: That South America's largest mammal, the tapir, steps out of the forest on our morning tour.

Day 6

We penetrate deeper into the Pantanal. After an hour drive we reach the river Sao Lourenco and the village of Porto Jofre. Now the adventure is taken to a higher level! Here we have very good chances to meet the fascinating jaguar and to maximize our chances we spend six days here. In the area around Porto Jofre there are several major rivers and many smaller tributaries, which means that no day is ever the same. Porto Jofre Pousada & Camping will be our base camp in the coming days. The accommodation is a little more rustic than the previous, but is right next to the river and allows us to maximize the morning hours on the river, which increases our chances for unique experiences.

Accomodation: Porto Jofre Pousada & Camping

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for this day: Seeing skimmers sweep the water surface with their specially shaped beak.

Day 7-11

Early start of the day to meet the Pantanal's rich and exciting wildlife. We travel in two boats with a tour guide and a local guide in each boat. The boats are open and stable for excellent photo opportunities. In case of rain, a roof can be folded up.

We travel through the river system with the wild nature close by. The excitement increases, what shows up around the next river bend? Stay tuned for a variety of birds, caimans and capybaras. Both giant otters and neotropical otters also live here. To maximize the chances to encounter jaguars, our local guides will keep radio contact with other boats. At noon we will take a break and eat a packed lunch before continuing travel the tributaries. In the evening around dinner, we have time to reflect and share our experiences during the day. What was your highlight? What is today's best picture? What do you think we'll see tomorrow?

Accomodation: Porto Jofre Pousada & Camping

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for during the days around Porto Jofre: The obvious answer is, of course, to see a relaxed jaguar resting in the sun on the beach! And at least as much, we hope to see the endangered giant otter.

Day 12

Morning on the river. Today we leave Porto Jofre and travels back north along the Transpantaneira up to our final stop at the ranch Pousada Piuval. At Pousada Piuval we once again have a chance to see monkeys, toucans and hyacinth macaws. We will try to see the species that we may have missed earlier.

Accomodation: Pousada Piuval

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

To hope for this day: That we will see a group of coatis digging around for insects under a tree, or why not the southern tamandua, one of the smaller anteaters?

Day 13

In the morning, we head back to Cuiaba and the airport where the tour ends.

Meals included: Breakfast

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