Brazil - Rivers, Rainforests & Wildlife

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Day 1: Arrival Iguazu Falls, Brazil

Upon arrival in Iguazu Falls, Brazil, you are met and transferred to our hotel in Iguazu Falls, Argentina. Tonight, our group meets for dinner and orientation.

Overnight in Iguazu Falls.


Day 2: Iguazu Falls - Argentine Side

Iguazu Falls is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is best witnessed from both sides of the river gorge. Today, we have a full day exploring the Argentine side where we view the falls from an up-close (and damp) perspective. Well-maintained walking trails take us above and below the falls for unforgettable views. Walk along raised platforms that take you through the rainforest amid the cooling spray of the falls.

Overnight in Iguazu Falls.


Day 3: Iguazu Falls - Brazilian Side, Three Borders Landmark, Fly to Sao Paulo

After breakfast, we visit the Three Borders Landmark where Brazil, Argentina & Paraguay meet. We then enjoy the Brazilian side of the falls and take in the panoramic views by walking along a gently sloping trail that provides a wide perspective of the falls. The trail leads you to an incredible platform that places you amidst the most thunderous cascades at Iguazu. After lunch, we fly to Sao Paulo.

Overnight in Sao Paulo.


Day 4: Sao Paulo - Cultural Capital of Brazil

After breakfast, we will explore the cultural capital of Brazil, Sao Paulo. We take a drive down the famous Paulista Avenue, see the old financial center of the city and the municipal market.

After lunch, we will visit the Se Cathedral located right in the center of Sao Paulo. In the evening, we will walk through the neighborhood of Vila Madalena, which comes alive at night with its restaurants and night life.

Overnight at Sao Paulo.


Day 5: Fly to Cuiabá, To Pantanal – Stop over at Rio Pixaim

A morning flight takes us to Cuiabá where we will transfer to the Pantanal Area. On the way we will explore one of Pantanal’s most popular routes, the Transpantaneira Highway. It is a 145km long dirt road with around 125 wooden bridges. Our hotel is located in the middle of the highway (from Cuiabá it is 100km on paved road and 65km on dirt road – approximately 3h30). Upon arrival we will check in to our hotel, followed by a boat tour of the surroundings.

Overnight at Rio Pixaim.


Day 6: Porto Jofre and Jaguar Safari

After breakfast we will enjoy a boat trip along the Pixaim River. After lunch, we will depart for Porto Jofre. On the way to Porto Jofre, we will explore the second half of Transpantaneira Highway (85 km on dirt road - approx. 3h). Enjoy one of the best wildlife viewing areas in the world! Here you can admire the flora and fauna of the Brazilian Pantanal, search for jaguars, caimans, capybaras, giant anteaters, anaconda, jabiru storks, macaws, and much, much more.

Overnight in Porto Jofre.


Day 7: Jaguar Safari

After breakfast we depart for a morning boat trip on Cuiaba River exploring the channels in search of the jaguars. After lunch at the hotel, we depart for an afternoon excursion in hopes of more jaguar sightings. The region has the highest density of jaguar population in the entire Pantanal, and we have a 95% of chance to see Jaguars, especially from mid June to mid November.

Overnight in Porto Jofre.


Day 8: Porto Jofre to Araras Lodge, Pantanal Activities

After breakfast we have an early departure for Araras Eco Lodge, via the Transpantaneira Highway. We will have lunch upon arrival and some time to rest before we attend a presentation introducing us to the surroundings and environmental projects. After dinner we will enjoy a night walk to look for the nocturnal animals that live in the area.

Overnight in Araras Eco Lodge, Pantanal.


Day 9: Pantanal Activities

We can enjoy several activities during our stay in the Pantanal. They include the following:

Several paths lead visitors to a close contact with its exuberant and varied flora as well as wildlife.

Horseback Riding
This is an excellent way to discover the open grassland and forest, regardless of it being flood or dry season.

Photo Safari in Jeep
This gives us a chance to explore the different landscapes as well as an immense variety of birds, mammals and reptiles that live in the area. It is possible to see caimans, the capybara, toucans, the giant anaconda and much more.

Enjoy just paddling, or if you prefer, piranha fishing along the rivers. This is certainly a relaxing yet exciting way to enjoy this untamed nature.

Overnight in Araras Eco Lodge, Pantanal.


Day 10: Fly to Brasilia

We say good bye to the creatures of the Pantanal and drive by car to Cuiabá (aprrox. 2h30 ) where we will catch our flight to the unique capital city of Brasilia.

Overnight in Brasilia.


Day 11: Exploring Brasilia, Fly to Manaus

Today, we explore the unique city of Brasilia. This capital is the only city in the world built in the 20th century. It has been awarded the status of Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. There are plenty of reasons for such renown: this young city, inaugurated in 1960, surprises even the most experienced travelers. Brasilia is the result of a modern urban project designed by Lucio Costa. When seen from above, the city's pilot plan resembles the shape of an airplane. Many refer to it as a bird with open wings, although the architect's original urban concept pointed to the shape of a cross, to symbolize possession. The city's project is, up to this day, a world reference when the issue is urban planning.

In the evening we fly to Manaus. Overnight in Manaus.


Day 12: Manaus, Indigenous Community, Pink River Dolphins

The city of Manaus was founded in 1669. The name "Manaus", means "mother of the gods" in tribute to the indigenous nation of Manaus. Manaus was at the center of the Amazon region's rubber boom, a city built deep in the Amazon basin by rubber barons in the late 19th century.

After breakfast, we travel by boat to the indigenous community of Tarianos where we learn about their culture and rituals. We continue by boat and arrive at Castanho Lake for our interaction with the pink river dolphins. We return to Manaus for lunch and afterwards you have the afternoon at leisure.

Overnight in Manaus.


Day 13: Manaus City Tour, Amazon River Safari

Our morning city tour of Manaus includes a visit to the river market and Indian Museum. After lunch, we board our regional style Amazon riverboat to begin our 2 day/2 night journey on the Amazon River. Our vessel is well adapted to the Amazon region. The Clipper's accommodations include cabins with bunk beds with night time air-conditioning, shower and toilet facilities and is equipped with motorized longboats for excursions.

As we make our way upstream toward the Amazon River, we enjoy a welcome drink (possibly a caipirinha, the national drink of Brazil) and snack while listening to lectures about the Amazon for a better understanding about its ecology. After dinner, we explore the river's edge with powerful searchlights to see caiman and sometimes night-hawks, snakes, sloths and frogs.

Overnight onboard our Amazon Clipper.


Day 14: Amazon River Safari

We wake up in Janauaca Lake and start our early exploration of the waking forest by canoe, keeping our eyes open for birds and for pink river dolphins. We return for breakfast followed by a walk in the forest and a visit to the inhabitants of the lake who subsist on manioc plantations, fishing, diverse fruit trees, rubber and Brazil-nut trees, wood and other extractive products.

The piranha fishing in late afternoon is not only for passionate anglers, as there is a good chance of seeing Hoatzins and large flocks of egrets. After dinner, we explore the forest in our canoes with the possibility of observing nocturnal animals and to admire the millions of stars and constellations of the southern hemisphere.

Overnight onboard our Amazon Clipper.


Day 15: Return to Manaus, Opera House, Fly to Salvador

We search for birds and animals one last time and there is a good chance to see the Victoria Regia, the giant water lilies, as we travel to the 'meeting of the waters'. The boat cruises down the Negro River navigating along the shore of the city of Manaus, allowing passengers to view the Amazonas Theater, the Port of Manaus and a chance to see the real life of the locals with their stilted houses. It is a spectacular merge of the Negro and Solimes Rivers.

From this point on both rivers form the famous Amazon River that runs all the way to the Atlantic Ocean. The waters of the two rivers run together for about 12kms, side by side, without mixing. The phenomenon happens due to differences in temperature, density, and speed of the waters of the rivers. We continue our trip on the Amazon River to the island of "Terra Nova" where lunch will be served in a typical restaurant (rustic yet clean restaurant in buffet style, international and regional dishes).

We return to Manaus, where our river safari concludes, and visit the famed Opera House. Surrounded by Parisian avenues, Italian piazzas and splendid fountains, it was here that Caruso sang and Isadora Duncan danced. Following lunch we travel to the airport in Manaus to catch our flight to Salvador.

Overnight in Salvador.


Day 16: Full Day Historical Tour of Salvador

We depart for a full day tour of Salvador, a beautiful city known for its Portuguese colonial architecture. We will begin at the Lower City (Cidade Baixa), where we will see the Itapagipe Peninsula. Next, we will visit the Bonfim Church, the most famous in the city, and also the traditional neighborhood of Ribeira. The highlight of the tour is the visit to Mercado Modelo, the largest handicraft center in Bahia. We visit the Barra Lighthouse, before we go through Corredor da Vitoria, Campo Grande and Piedade to arrive at Salvador's Upper City (Cidade Alta). The highlight of this tour is a visit to Pelourinho, which is considered to be the most important architectural complex dating from the 17th and 18th centuries. It attracts people from all over the world because of its beauty and cultural diversity.

Overnight in Salvador.


Day 17: Explore Salvador, Fly to Rio de Janeiro

We have the morning free in Salvador to explore the Old Town. We will have lunch and enjoy a panoramic coastal tour enroute to the airport for our flight to Rio de Janeiro. Upon arrival in Rio, we will have dinner and rest up for our busy day tomorrow.

Overnight in Rio.


Day 18: Rio - One of the World's Most Beautiful Cities

After breakfast we explore the city which includes a visit to the most important sites of Brazilian history in Rio, including the National Library, Tiradentes Palace, The Portuguese Royal Lecture Room, the Pao Imperial and the panoramic view of the colonial buildings that remain at Uruguaiana Street.

After lunch we will visit Sugar Loaf Mountain. It was at the feet of Urca Hill, that the city of Rio de Janeiro was founded in 1565 by Estacio de Sa. First we travel by modern cable-car from Praia Vermelha to Urca Hill, located at 215 meters of altitude, a point from which you can see all of Guanabara Bay and its islands, the Flamengo land filling, Corcovado and the Rio-Niteroi bridge, besides the majestic mountains that protect and embellish the city.

We then ride a second cable car that will take us to the top of Sugar Loaf mountain, at 395 meters, which gives a beautiful and unique perspective - the beach of Copacabana, Santa Cruz Fortress and some beaches of Niteroi. We finish our day with a tour of downtown Rio to see the most beautiful monuments of old Imperial Rio.

Overnight in Rio de Janeiro.


Day 19: Rio de Janeiro - Corcovado, Tijuca Forest

One of the world's most beautiful cities, Rio sits on the coast against a backdrop of mountains. Its historic buildings, massive squares, beaches, nightlife, and pleasant climate make Rio a perfect place to wind down from our eventful journey.

Today, we travel to Corcovado for a view of the massive statue of Christ the Redeemer that gazes across the bay. Definitely the most famous and enduring image of Rio, a stay in Rio wouldn't be complete without this experience. We also travel to the charming district of Santa Teresa with its cobble stoned hilly streets, old homes, interesting museums and Rio's last surviving tram line.

After lunch we visit the Morrinho Project, a social and cultural project based outside the Pereira da Silva favela (slum) in the Southern Zone of Rio de Janeiro before we end our adventure with our farewell dinner.

Overnight in Rio.


Day 20: Depart Rio de Janeiro

Our adventure concludes with a transfer to the airport for your journey home.

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