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10 Pantanal jaguar safari tips

1. Visit the northern Pantanal for your pantanal jaguar safari. The northern Pantanal has the highest density of jaguars in the world. It offers the best chances on seeing and photographing jaguars in the wild.

2. Stay at a lodge in Porto Jofre, it is located next to the Cuiaba river and the prime area for spotting jaguars, examples for lodges are Pantanal Norte or Pantanal camping

3. Best time for a pantanal jaguar safaris is between July and November. During dry season the water level is low and jaguars come to the riverbanks to rest, hunt and mate.

Pantanal jaguar safari

4. Hire local guides since they grew up in the Pantanal, the locals have excellent spotting skills and are great at reading behaviour and manoeuvring the boat just for the perfect shot.

5. For keen photographers it is best to bring 2 camera bodies, one with a medium zoom lens (70-200) and one equipped with a 300- 600mm prime lens for close up images. If you have extenders bring them. But don’t forget about a wide angle lens to get some great scenic shots as well!

6. Bring lightweight breathable, easy to dry clothing (long trousers and long sleeves), a hat, sun creme, insect repellent and sunglasses for sun and insect protection.

7. When booking a Pantanal jaguar safari ask about the daily routine! Most operators go back to the lodge for lunch meaning you end up losing 2-3 hours of valuable jaguar spotting time. Pantanal safaris brings packed lunch so you have lunch in the prime jaguar area.

Pantanal jaguar safaris

8. Ask the touroperator what boat they are using. Some operators do not have a canopy for sun protection, meaning you will be exposed to the sun for the entire day.

9. Combine a jaguar safari with a stay at lodges along the Transpantaneira. Besides Jaguars the Pantanal offers a great variety of bird and other mammals like Anteater, Ocelot, Crab-eating fox or Tapir. Extend your jaguar safari with just a few days to get the full Pantanal experience.  Explore Pantanal tour options.

10. Have faith in your guide and be patient. Jaguar safaris mean long days of searching on the river (10+ hours) and sometimes it takes time before a jaguar is spotted. Pantanal Safaris has a network of fishermen and guides which all inform us via radio to ensure best chances on seeing jaguars for our clients.

Discover more about the Pantanal:

Facts about the jaguar

Pantanal jaguar safaris

Pantanal ocelot photography

11 facts about the pantanal

Jaguar tourism