traveling to mato grosso
This was the first time I had ever travelled so far and only know a few words in Portuguese which would make the journey quite difficult without my partner, the reason for the trip was to visit my girlfriends family in Cuiaba which is in the centre of South America.
A twelve hour flight from Amsterdam to Sao Paulo Guarulhos I remember Seeing the Skyscrapers on the plane over Guarulhos and being completely taken back by the scale of the city.
stepping of the plane the heat was quite intense and humid, Staying a short while in the Airport we had another flight to Cuiaba.
Once we were on the plane after about one hour I realised how big Brazil was it took another hour to land in Cuiaba.
Cuiaba, Mato Grosso
Cuiaba is the capital of the State Mato Grosso it is also the centre of south America it was founded in 1979 during the gold rush.
Cuiaba is surrounded by thousands of square miles of tropical forests and wetlands.
Once we finally arrived in Cuiaba and stepped of the plane the heat was very powerful and humid, nothing like I had ever experienced before, I was just happy not to be cold.
Cuiaba has a hot tropical climate reaching temperatures of 40° I have been four times now to Cuiaba and the tempreture has been late twentys to mid thirtys from 2pm to around 4pm
Things to do
Parque das Aguas
Parque das Aguas, which translates in english to water park but this is literally a park with water in the middle not a water park with slides.
The park is a great place to relax and have a drink and something to eat and listen to music with a few bars that play live music or go for a walk around the park, many people go to exersise.
There is also a great water display with music each evening.
You might be lucky and also see Aligators in the park, don't worry they won't bite.
Pantanal is the world's largest protected tropical wetlands that ranges from 54,000 to 75,000 square miles.
over a thousand different animal species and over three thousand plant species makes it a incredibly unique place to visit.
If you are planning to visit pantanal you will need to arrange a tour guide from Cuiaba.
Luckily for me we paid my partners brother a small amount for him to take us to a pousada which translates in english to hostel, however you dont have to share with strangers, we had our own small chalet, it is possible to pay more for a larger chalet that you could share with friends.
Pantanal in Cuiaba is around a two hour drive from the city.
We were driving for around an hour and the scenery became more dense with trees and farm land passing through only a few small villages.
The first time I visited pantanal I was shocked at how vast and beautiful it is. the climate is very tropical hot and humid but feels pure and unpolluted.
Make sure you have the repellents for mosquitos and other insects and all relevant injections depending on where you are traveling in Brazil.
When we arrived at the pousada for the first time in 2014 I just wanted to jump into the pool and cool down,
we only paid to use the facilitys this time so I took some pictures.
The next time we travelled back to the same Pousada in 2018 we decided to stay for a night, arrived in the afternoon and used the pool until the evening, before it was dark we got changed and had a delicious buffet for dinner, the next morning breakfast which was all included in the cost.
We also paid to have a safari and boat ride into the wetlands that took us deeper into the nature of pantanal, we were told that we might be able to see Jaguars but unfortunatly we didnt but we did see a foot print according to our tour guide it was a Jaguars.
Sitting on the back seats of a jeep we drove deeper into the the woods seeing lots of alligators!
When we arrived we were told to wait while they got the boat ready for the journey.
After they had finished getting the boat ready, we set out onto the water slowly and gaining speed as it got deeper which was nice because it gave a great breeze, well needed in the hot weather! the guide took us across the vast broad for about 15 minutes and we came to a small island where we got off, walked across a long wooden walk way.
Walking along the wooden path, it actually felt more secure than it looks!
I began to get very hot, it was very hot and humid but all part of the experience, we got to the end of the walkway and reached a tall wooden lookout tower, climed up the steep steps to reach the top the views are brilliant but didn't stay up there long because it was incredibly hot.
We made our way back to the boat and inland , the jeep took us back through the woods, the scenery is amazing.
the jeep also stopped in its tracks for cows and later alligators that were sunbathing!
The jeep made its way back to the complex and later that day we headed back to Cuiaba.
Chapada dos Guimarães national park, is located around forty miles from Cuiaba, outside the city is the geographic centre of South America which is 6,207 km²
a truely stunning place with waterfalls and wild life, tempretures range from 12 to 25 °C but can get higher and colder.
We travelled to Pousada Penhasco first in 2014 and went back in 2018 to stay the night, the pousada has great views and a short drive from the town centre.
Chapada dos Guimaraes Town
Chapada dos Guimaraes also has a small historic town with pousadas, restaurants, memorabilia shops and agents to organise different excursions.
We decided to stay a night in a Pousada called Villa Guimaraes although the other Pousada we stayed in wasn't far from the town this was only walking distance.
A very quiet town, we went out for a meal in the evening it there were not many people other than the locals, it only cost around £8 for both of our meals and two beers!
Villa Guimaraes & Town
Nobres, Mato Grosso
It boasts beautiful waterways, waterfalls, limestone caves, forests and beautiful wildlife which contains 30,920 acres of land.
Transport can be arranged in Cuiaba, luckily we got a lift.
we stayed Bom Jadim the pousada was called Serra Azul I would recommend staying here however there are plenty more to stay at in the area.
We booked a trip to a near by waterfall called Cachoeira Serra Azul, there was a short climb to the waterfall by foot, walking through the tropical forest we arrived at the end to the most beautiful natural scenery I have seen.
Together we went swimming in the natural water next to the extemely powerful waterfall, it was an amazing experience after about forty minutes we walked back to the car but instead of walking back the entire way we took a zip wire down the hill!
The next day we explored Bom Jardim, only a ten minute walk from the pousada was a small Bar with natural water running next to it I swam with more fish the water is so clear and pure.
We bought some bananas from the bar and fed them to the wild monkey's
I had never seen so many that close! have a look at my videos.
later that day we hired quad bikes we followed our guide to a reserve for parrots and other wildlife, unfortunatly the parrots were hiding that day, but the scenery was beautiful.