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The Pantanal: Fazenda Barra Mansa

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Fazenda Barra Mansa

Fazenda Barra Mansa is a small, family-run lodge in a remote part of southern Pantanal. It is a 3-hour drive on unpaved roads from Campo Grande airport, or an hour by Cessna aircraft landing on the private grass airstrip. This flight is a wonderful introduction to the wetlands: you can really appreciate the vastness of the Pantanal wilderness from the air.

The fazenda was built in the 1940s as a cattle ranch and is now managed by the founder’s grandson, who is very eco-conscious. You can expect a warm welcome here. The position of the lodge is unrivalled: truly isolated from human interference, it sits right on the banks of the Rio Negro which flows into a flood plain. There is very little river traffic, an abundance of wonderful natural landscapes, and oodles of wildlife. It is not uncommon, even in one visit, to see giant otters, giant anteaters, toucans, hyacinth macaws, caiman, capybara, and perhaps even the elusive jaguar. 

Being a guest here is almost like staying in a private home: there are just four guest rooms situated in the gardens next to the main house. The rooms are decorated and furnished in the original ranch style: simple but comfortable with air-conditioning and a shared veranda. Families with children are very welcome.

Guided excursions are offered on horseback, on foot, by boat, or by safari truck. Since the lodge entertains so few guests at any one time, they can be tailored to suit you: why not enjoy breakfast on the riverbank after an early start for bird watching?

What our experts say

If you really want to go deep into the heart of the Pantanal, and enjoy an intimate experience with local people who love the place, this is the right choice of lodge for you. I found it so relaxing and peaceful, with a friendly reception and great guides. I really enjoyed my stay here.


David Nichols

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Food and Travel Magazine Readers' Awards - Tour Operator of The Year 2016

Selling Travel Agents Choice Awards - Best Tour Operator to Latin America 2016

Sunday Times Travel Magazine - Editor's Award 2013

Guardian and Observer Travel Awards - Top Ten Small Tour Operator: 2012

Sunday Times Travel Magazine Awards - Best Value Tour Operator 2011

Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Awards - Top Ten Specialist Tour Operator 2016

Wanderlust Readers' Travel Awards - Top Ten Tour Operator 2015

British Travel Awards - Best Small Tour Operator to Central and South America 2012

Latin American Travel Association - Award for Customer Service 2012

Sunday Times Travel Magazine Awards - Best Specialist Tour Operator 2011

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