Pantaneiros (Pantanal cowboy) have been mustering cattle throughout this region on horses and mules for generations. So it only seems fitting to discover this wetland from the back of a horse alongside the very men who live and breathe the region.
Expect to plunge through knee-deep water crossings, gasp in delight when you see exotic toucans, hyacinth macaws, armadillos and caimans (similar to crocodiles), sip ‘terere’, the traditional drink of the Pantaneiro, muster a 1000-head herd of cattle and catch a piranha in caiman-infested waters. The wildlife and the hospitality of your hosts are true highlights of this ride; and this region is like no other in the world.
- Horse Breed:Quarter Horses.
- Pace:The pace can vary from a walk right through to a gallop.
- Weight Limit:A maximum of 100kg/220lbs.
- Type of tack:A mixture of McClellan, English and traditional Brazillian saddles.
- Seasons:The Pantanal’s dry season is from July to October and this is when the wildlife are gathered around the few remaining water holes. The summer rainfall is between November and March.
- Group size:A minimum of 2 and a maximum of 12 guests.
- Time in Saddle:On average between 5 to 6 hours daily.
- Riding Ability:Suitable for intermediate to experienced riders. Not sure what your riding experience is? Watch THIS video to find out.
- Accommodation:Fazendas (a fazenda is equivalent to a homestead), which offer spacious, air-conditioned rooms with ensuites. And a fixed, tented camp in the heart of the Pantanal.
- Ride Length:7 days, 6 nights with 5 riding days.
The price includes accommodation (double/triple/quad for 6 nights), meals, drinks and riding.
The price does not include international flights or travel insurance (compulsory), staff gratuities and transfers to and from the ride.
ItineraryExpand AllCollapse All
*Please note, this is a suggested itinerary only and subject to change at the discretion of your guides due to weather and other influencing factors.
After the long journey, arrival at the Daniel’s Fazenda, located in the Rio Negro region, the most preserved region of the Pantanal, with abundance of wildlife and nature.
In the afternoon a brief presentation of the program before leaving for a boat tour on the Rio Negro/Black River. An idyllic setting that serves as an introduction to the Pantanal, the first opportunity to see the fauna including fish: piraputanga, golden, painted, pacu, piranha and stingray ; also capybara, caiman, giant otter and many birds. There have been more than 360 are cataloged in this region.
After breakfast, you’ll meet at the corral where you’ll be paired with your horse according to your riding level. You’ll start riding by fields, savannas, forests, mountain ranges, bays and salt marshes that serve as the backdrop for bird and wildlife watching. Typical lunch in the field as done on the traditional cattle drives. Approximately 5 hours in the saddle.
You’ll be breaking camp early and ride to Capao farm, arriving before lunch. It’s here where you’ll have a chance to visit Rio Negro School which sits in the heart of the Pantanal. After a good siesta under the trees, we start our journey on horseback along the banks of Vazante Castelo, where you’ll see the landscape change from the Rio Negro region. You’ll ride about 3 hours to reach the Fly Camp – Refuge Primavera – which as the name implies, is a true refuge in the middle of the Pantanal. Tonight you’ll experience sleeping in a hammock, like a true Brazilian, surrounded by dimly lit lanterns, in the heart of the Pantanal. The Refuge has a comfortable infrastructure: hall with screens to protect against insects, bathrooms and a kitchen. If you prefer not to sleep in a hammock a mattress can be provided. Approximately 5 hours in the saddle.
After an early breakfast, you’ll depart for BP Farm. You’ll traverse some exceptional landscape of Vazante Castelo, where you’ll experience the lush Pantanal flora and fauna. You’ll ride through an open landscape, surrounded by native forest (cerrado), along the shores of Vazante. This is
a great opportunity for exotic bird and wildlife watching. Pause for a tereré* (a drink typical in the mid-West of Brazil, made with yerba-mate and cold water) at Retiro Sao Luis, where the support vehicle will be waiting. A few more hours of riding up to the place where we stopped for
a picnic lunch in the field. After a rest, you’ll continue riding along the Vazante Castelo, until the BP Farm, where you’ll spend the next few days. Approximately 6 hours in the saddle.
After a hearty breakfast, you’ll ride to the pasture where herds of Pantaneiro horses are bred. Here you’ll have the opportunity to observe the behaviour of the stallion in contact with your horses, as you approach his ‘family’. You’ll return to the farm for lunch and a siesta, after which you’ll drive to the Bay to try your hand at some piranha fishing. The piranha is mainly used to prepare a typical dish of the region – piranha soup! Approximately 5 hours in the saddle.
After an early breakfast, you’ll leave on horseback to watch the sun rise. Today you’ll join the Pantaneiro cowboys and help them work their cattle. This is TRULY a unique Pantanal experience, unlike anywhere in the world. After dinner with the Pantaneiro cowboys, you’ll return to the estancia by car.
Depending on your transfer schedule, you’ll be able to do some morning activities before return to Campo Grande.
*The estancia’s you’ll be riding across are more than 100,000 acres and 20,000 cattle in total.
There are different ways to get to the ranches/ lodges: by air/panoramic flights (all year round), by land in 4WD vehicles (available from May to November) or a combination of both.
The air transfer/panoramic flights offer an amazing bird’s eye view of the wetland that is thePantanal – a fantastic experience!
You can choose between flying directly from Campo Grande (one hour flight) or a combination of land and air transfers, which includes a car trip from Campo Grande to Aquidauana (130 km pavement road – 01h30 hs) and then by air from Aquidauana to the ranch (30 minutes flight). The aircrafts’ capacities is between three to five passengers with a luggage limit of 15kg per person (soft bags preferable). For groups with more than five passengers it is necessary to quote two or more aircrafts, according to the number of people on the trip.
The overland transfer by 4WD vehicle is the most cost effective and takes about 6 hours from Campo Grande on asphalt and sandy roads, a great introduction to Pantanal’s environment. The 4WD vehicles are comfortable and their capacities are up to four passengers. For groups with more than four passengers it is necessary to quote two or more vehicles, according to the number of people on the trip.
You also have the option to combine land transfer into the ranch and air transfer home.
NB: All transfers are private and are quoted for the type of transport(aircraft or vehicle), NOT per person.
Please contact Globetrotting for further information and pricing.