The mythical Amazon can only be described in superlatives. It covers an area of more than 5 millions square kilometers of which 80% is on Brazilian territory and it spreads for eight States, one of them is the State of Mato Grosso. It is the largest and most preserved rainforest region in the world. Through this large area, flows an extensive drainage system of more than thousand rivers, which account for 20% of the world’s fresh surface water.
The heartland of Brazil covers an area equal to Western Europe (2,000,000 sq km), and its original vegetation is called “Cerrado”, considered the richest savanna in the world, due to its high plant diversity and endemism. Most of Brazil’s great rivers find their sources here. It’s an area of enormous ecological importance with many areas of spectacular beauty, as the National Park of Chapada dos Guimarães, only 55km North East from Cuiabá airport. Its biodiversity is home of 837 birds species, 161 mammals, 120 reptiles and over 10.000 vascular plants. 44% of them are endemic.
The Pantanal, one of the last great wildernesses, is the largest continuous wetland on the planet, declared a World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, is South America’s primary wildlife sanctuary. With a total area of 240,000 sq km located in the center of the continent, the Pantanal is a biogeography mixing bowl, containing elements of the Amazon and Atlantic Rainforests, the Brazilian Savannah and the Paraguayan Chaco. This fantastic biodiversity refuges 698 bird species, 100 mammals, 177 reptiles, 40 amphibians and over 250 fish species.
1st Day – Arrival: Cuiabá to Jardim D’Amazônia
Meeting and greeting at Cuiaba airport. At 13h20, departure to the Amazon ecosystem (290 km on paved federal road– approximately 4.5 hours). Arrival by late afternoon. Welcome drink and check-in at Jardim d’Amazonia Eco Lodge. Dinner and overnight.
2nd Day – Amazon: trails and canoeing
After breakfast, follow the trails through this area, getting to know even more than the local flora and fauna but also the history of the rubber extraction industry – a former important part of the local economy.
A fish barbecue will follow this trekking and you may even relax on a hammock. Later, canoeing on the Claro River, exploring the Anaconda Lake and enjoying the solitude of the jungle and its different life forms: (muscovy duck, long tailed tyrant, cormorant, Amazon kingfisher, green and rufous kingfisher, swallow tanager, herons…). Dinner and overnight.
(B, L, D)
3rd day – Departure: Amazon to Bom Jardim, before meeting the great Savana
Breakfast and departure to Bom Jardim Village.
Bom Jardim takes place at 162km from Cuiabá Airport and is strategically located in an area of transition between the Savanna and the Amazon rainforest. Bom Jardim is the land of many clear water rivers, lakes and caverns, the habitat of several species of fish and plants. Snorkeling and caving are outstanding.
At your arrival, 1 km trail until we reach Enchanted Aquarium and Salobra River, where our snorkeling activity takes place. About 2 hours at river pace enjoying the beauties of underwater. Lunch and in the afternoon departure to Chapada dos Guimarães, passing by impressive rocks formation, where we will visit next day. Outstanding scenario to admire until the end of the trip. Visit to Chapada Town historic centre and to the Geodesic Mark of South America for a breathtaking view over the plain. Check in at the charming Park Eco lodge.
Dinner and overnight.
(B, L, D)
4th day – Parque Nacional: Waterfalls, trails and sunset
Breakfast. Join the Tour of the Waterfalls through the Chapada dos Guimaraes National Park. The wind and rain sculpted intriguing shapes in the sand stone covered with rich vegetation. Birds singing and waterfalls add to the enjoyment of this trail. The walk ends with a visit to the Bridal Veil Waterfall and lunch at a local restaurant.
Returning to the Park Eco lodge, enjoy the private trails of the property and a walk to the observation tower. This is the place to be at sunset. It allows you a bird`s eye view over the Sao Jeronimo Peak.
Dinner and overnight.
(B, L, D)
5th Day – Savanna to Pantanal: Araras Eco Lodge
Breakfast. Today we are headed to Pantanal, Araras Eco Lodge. Arriving in Cuiabá, lunch at local restaurant and departure to Araras Eco Lodge. This transfer is divided into two different stages. The first is a journey on a paved road along farms and cattle ranches. After reaching Poconé – a small mining town and the gateway to the Northern Pantanal, we take the Transpantaneira Park Road at km “0” (108 km / 67.1 mi. from Cuiaba). This is a park road at its best, allowing us to drive above the water level, watching the flora and fauna of the Pantanal ecosystem – a photo safari along 32 km of dirt road with several stops along the way for photos and information. Welcome drink on arrival and accommodation. Later, you will be guided on an introductory walk through the surroundings of the lodge to know our concepts and many preservation projects, follow to the Great Egret Lookout, a 12 m / 39 ft. high observation tower. After dinner, night walk under the Southern Hemisphere sky.
(B, L, D)
6th day – Araras Eco Lodge: Canoeing and trekking
After breakfast, take a photo safari through private dirt roads towards the Clarinho River.
Reaching its banks, board a canoe and paddle down the river, exploring the forest that grows by the riverbanks and mangroves. Here lives a colony of “ariranhas” – giant river otters. With some luck, you may spot a family playing with their babies and teaching them how to swim and fish. Chance of fishing the elusive piranha, not an easy task, but fun. Enjoy a barbecue lunch under the shadow of the threes (*). Hammocks are slanged to enjoy a “siesta”.
Return to the Lodge in time for the afternoon tea. Later on, trek the Howler Monkey trail to the Howler Monkey Tower, our highest observation point – 25 m high -, for a magnificent view of the sunset.
After dinner, join a night truck-safari drive in search of nocturnal animals.
(B, L, D)
(*) If the Sentinela Camp is not accessible (depending on the weather and terrain conditions), this canoeing tour will take place on the Corixo River. In that case, we will return to the lodge for lunch.
7th day – Araras Eco Lodge – horseback riding and trekking
After breakfast, enjoy a horseback ride, which will allow you to explore the diversity of the Pantanal landscape including some flooded areas of the Pantanal plain. The Pantaneiro horse are docile and has adapted, through the centuries, to eat with its nose underwater. In this region, the horse is the Pantaneiros’ best friend, a daily companion during work and leisure. Return to the lodge for lunch. In the afternoon, trek the Rondon Trail towards the 13 m high Jabiru Stork Tower, where you can watch a Jabiru Stork nest. Return to Araras Eco Lodge for dinner and overnight.
(B, L, D)
8th day – Departure to Cuiabá Airport
Another sunrise walk to witness the dawn of this amazing ecosystem. Return to the Lodge for breakfast. Departure to Cuiabá by 7:00 or 12:30, depending on your flight time.
Which is the nearest airport to Araras Ecolodge?
You should reach the Northern Pantanal, where Araras Ecolodge is located, through Cuiaba Airport, which is just 132 km from the lodge: 100 km on paved road toward Pocone – a small mining town and gateway to the Pantanal + 32 km through the Transpantaneira Park Road, dirt and scenic.
Is the transportation from Cuiaba included?
Our packages for Araras Ecolodge only have got the two options: with or without transfers.
If you have been confirm the full package, regular transfers in air conditioned vehicle are included from/to Cuiaba Airport.
The journey takes about 2h30. To ensure that our guests do not lose their return flight from Cuiaba, we count on minimum 4 hours for the return transfer: 3 hours for the journey and 1 for the check-in.
Airport > Araras Ecolodge
13:20 for flights arriving until 13:00
17:00 for flights arriving between 13:01 and 16:40
Araras Ecolodge > Airport
07:30 for flights departing between 11:30 and 16:29
12:30 for flights departing after 16:30
Why do I need to inform you about my arrival schedule? May I just tell you which transfer schedule I prefer?
If you let us know about your arrival flight details, we will meet you at the airport, right after the baggage claim area, avoiding misunderstandings.
Also, if your flight gets delayed, we will know in advance and will do our best to assure that you don´t lose a transfer to the lodge.
One of my flights doesn´t fit your transfer schedule. How can we handle it?
It is possible to book private transfers at any schedule – supplement applies. Please contact our reservations department.
I´ve booked the package without transfers. May I book them later?
Yes, of course. However, the confirmation of this service will depend on the availability at the time of booking. We suggest a minimum of 3 days in advance.
I´ll arrive at Cuiaba a few days in advance and will be staying at a hotel. Do I have to meet you at the airport for the transfer?
No. We can pick you up from your hotel in Cuiaba. Please be sure to inform our reservations department.
I will arrive at Araras Ecolodge during the morning. May I check-in? Is lunch included?
You will be most welcome if you arrive in the morning. However, your room may not be available before 2 pm.
Lunch on the day of arrival is not included, but if you let us know in advance, we will provide lunch and you can settle locally this extra service.
I´ll depart from the lodge at 12h30. Is there any activity programed for the last morning?
If you leave the lodge at 12:30 or after, your guide will organize one last activity before lunch.
How big are the groups?
During the regular activities, each of our guides – who are experts in nature and have an in depth knowledge of the flora and fauna of the Pantanal Flood Plain – is assigned to small groups of 8 to 10 guests, for safety reasons but also so our guests may deeply enjoy their experience with increased chances of spotting wildlife.
May I book a private guide?
Our packages include regular activities, but it is possible to book a private guide for your group or family, according to availability. A supplement applies: please contact our reservations.
Are the activities accessible for everyone?
The difficulty level of our activities is light to moderate, and considered accessible by most of our guests. However, some people with walking difficulties may have some issues with some of the activities. If that is your case, please contact our reservations department, for detailed information. A private guide may be a solution.
Are the activities safe?
Our activities follow all the rules for Safety Management and are monitored through radio.
However, precisely for safety reasons, the horseback riding is not allowed for children under 6 years old.
Will I be able to use my mobile phone and access the internet?
Generally, there is no mobile coverage at the lodge.
You will be able to access the internet through complimentary wifi in social areas.
I´m a vegetarian or I’ve got some food intolerance? Do I have to let the lodge know?
Our meals are buffet, with various dishes, including vegetarian. However, if you let us know, we will be able to serve you better.
What should I take to the Pantanal?
For your Pantanal experience:
We recommend light cotton clothes for the activities, including trousers and long sleeved shirts (against the sun and insects) and walking shoes or boots (very important). You should also avoid dark colours. Please do not forget your shorts, t-shirts, swimwear, hat with a brim, knee-high socks (the ones for sports) and 2 extra pairs of shoes.
From June to September, at night, temperatures can be as low as 4°C- 39°F: a sweater or windbreaker may come in handy.
You may also find useful to bring your camera, sunglasses, binoculars, pocket flashlight, pocket knife, mosquito repellent, sunscreen lotion, your prescribed medication (including anti-histaminic), batteries and toiletries.