| We had a wonderful stay at Pousada Pequi a charming, family-owned 10-room inn located on a former fazenda (farm) in the Pantanal in Aquidauana, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. Located 112 miles /180 km from Campo Grande, Aquiduanais known as the "southern gateway to the Pantanal tropical wetlands" and the inn offers a wide selection of adventures to experience including Horseback Riding, Photographic Animal Safaris, Alligator Tours, Bird Watching, Carriage Rides, Milking Cows, Ecological Walks, Piranha Fishing, River Tours, and much more!
Although we have traveled to Brazil many times throughout the years, this was our first trip to the mid-western part of Brazil, to the state of Mato Grosso do Sul, home of the Pantanal, where its very name conjures up the exotic, and we wanted to experience it all.
On March 17, 2019, we flew from São Paulo, Brazil from Guarulhos (GRU) International Airport to Campo Grande (CGR), where we rented a car at the airport and drove just under 2-hours to reach our destination of Aquiduana to spend 1-night at Pousada Pequi to experience a bit of the Pantanal, before continuing on to Bonito.
The Pantanal, the world's largest tropical wetland, is located primarily in the mid-western state of Mato Grosso do Sul, and covers an area of approximately 54,000 - 75,000 square miles(140,000 - 195, 000 sq. km), and extends to the neighboring state of Mato Grosso, and to the countries of Bolivia and Paraguay. The area is home to 1000 bird species, 400 fish species, 300 mammalian species, 480 reptile species, and more.
Renata & Rodrigo Queiroz
Pousada Pequi Owners
Situated on an authentic former Pantaneiro fazenda (farm), 1,000 meters (0.6 mile) from the banks of the Aquiduana River, Pousada Pequi provides its guests with the opportunity to see the Pantanal and all it offers, up close and on a personal basis.
Fish with sautéed onions
Arriving late at night, the restaurant had prepared a lovely dinner buffet for us consisting of a salad with beets and carrots, fish with sautéed onions, mandioca (cassava also calledyuca) fries, a regional dish of pasta with dried beef, rice and feijao (beans), and torta de queijo (a savory cheese pie) made with cheese made on the premises. For dessert there was another cheese made on the premises accompaniedby goiaba (guava) compote and banana compote.
We headed to our attractive room, which had 2 beds, a large flat-screen television, and instantly fell asleep. Other in-room amenities included a large bathroom with a walk-in shower and an assortment of toiletries on the vanity.
In the morning we awoke to bird song, and upon opening the door we were greeted by 2 talkative parrots sitting on a table outside our room. For birders, as well as nature and animal lovers, Pousada Pequi was a dream of an experience.
Debra on tour of grounds with the Grand Rhea
We felt like we were in a nature park with the plethora of parrots, including small green parrots with yellow "hats" and yellow around their eyes, and bright red pops of color under their wings and on the tail feathers, and arara-canide with gorgeous turquoise and bright yellow coloring and bright green "hat," however it was the Grande Rhea, a tall flightless bird thatis a relative of the ostrich and emu, walking around the grounds that captured our attention.
The grounds had an abundance of stunning tropical flowers in a wide array of colors including heliconia, bird of paradise, and torch ginger, as well as fruit trees including acerola, with its bright red cherry-like appearance.
As we would be going on a 2+ hour photographic safari, we enjoyed a hearty breakfast dining al fresco on a delicious selection of fresh fruit, homemade cheese, jellies, cakes, breads, our favorite pãode queijo, a type of cheese bread made with povilho (cassava flour), yogurt, and more.
Going on safari with Pousada Pequiin an open truck with a canopy provided us with the perfect Pantanal experience. We had a fantastic time spotting the many exotic birds including the famous bird symbol of the Pantanal, the tuiuiu, (jaburu) a beautiful large stork with a distinctive black head and beak, colorful red neck "collar" and white body. Other exciting sightings included seeing Brahmin cattle, macaco-prego (brown capuchin monkey, Cebus cay), and capivaras (capybaras, Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris), a relative of the guinea pig, that were adorable and are the largest living rodents in the world. We even saw a jacare caiman (alligator)!
For a 10-room inn, Pousada Pequi has much to offer guests in the form of unique and thrilling personalized adventures to experience including Photographic Safaris, Ecological Tours, Animals and Bird Tours, Alligator Tours, Bird Watching, Carriage Rides, Milking Cows, Ecological Walks, Horseback Riding, Piranha Fishing, and River Tours, making it a perfect introduction to all that the Pantanal has to offer.
Pousada Pequi - Horses
For those that are looking for a more relaxing day, there is a Swimming Pool lined with inviting lounge chairs and sun umbrellas, perfect for soaking up the relaxing ambience or reading a book.
Their restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, afternoon snack and dinner. Breakfast is served from 7:00 am to 9:00 pm, Lunch is served from 12:00to 1:00 pm, there is an Afternoon Snack at 3:00 pm, and Dinner is served from 8:00pm to 9:00 pm.
Edward F. Nesta with
Rodrigo & Renata Queiroz
Pousada Pequi Owners
Other hotel amenities include free WiFi, laundry service, and complimentary parking. For non-Portuguese speaking guests, arrangements can be made for a bilingual guide, as well as transfer service.
Before leaving to drive to Bonito for the rest of our trip to Mato Grosso do Sul, we played with the new puppies, said "hello" to the horses, and took a last look around to remember our wonderful stay at Pousada Pequi.
Debra C. Argen with puppy
Read more about our Pequi Photographic Safari in the Adventures section.
• Watch Adventure Kid - Debra C. Argen walking along with the animals - https://youtu.be/DnFrgfu_7ug
• Watch Adventure Kid - Debra C. Argen talk with the Parrots - https://youtu.be/d4xgg7nsw2E
• Watch as the jacare (alligator) swims to shore - https://youtu.be/usFUy2EXESU
• Watch Luxury Experience start their safari - https://youtu.be/RgVnJ-Q1EpA
• Watch as the safari runs into a cattle crossing - https://youtu.be/Ko1PMkiMrIg
For more information, please visit their website: http://www.pousadapequi.com.br/en/home
Estrada Rural ATM 04
(Estrada MS 171 40 km, área rural)
Aquidauana, Mato Grosso do Sul (MS)
WhatsApp: +55 (67) 99934-5781
Read more about our experiences in Brazil in the Pantanal and Bonito in the Destinations, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, Gastronomy and Adventures sections.
See you at Pousada Pequi
Important Travel and Planning Information
How to Get There from São Paulo
Azul Airlines flies from Campinas (VCP) Airport to Bonito (BYO) airport. The flight time is 1 hour and 35 minutes. Note Azul Airlines only flies to Bonito on select days of the week. Check their schedule accordingly. Flight time 3 hours 25 minutes.
GOL Airlines and LATAM fly from Guarulhos (GRU) International Airportto Campo Grande (CGR). The flight time is roughly 1 hour 50 minutes. To get from Campo Grande, the capital of Mato Grosso do Sul to Bonito, you can rent a car. Drive time is roughly 3 hours 40 minutes.
Travel and Tourism information:
We used Agência Ygarapé for expert and professional tour information and booking our adventures. The agency has been providing high-quality, attentive service for tours, packages, accommodations, and transport services and more for over 20+years, serving Bonito and the Pantanal region.
Please visit their site for more information (site is available in English, Portuguese, and Spanish): www.ygarape.com.br.
Agência Ygarapé is opendaily from 7:00 am until 9:00 pm (and until 10:00 pm during high season).
Rua Coronel Pilad Rebuá, 1853, Centro
Bonito, Mato Grosso do Sul (MS)
Telephone: +55 (67)3255-1733
Cellular: +55 (67) 99213-7374
For more information on Bonito and Pantanal, please visit: http://www.visitbrasil.com/en/destinos/bonito.html, http://www.visitbrasil.com/pt/destinos/bonito.html
Important Tips for Bonito and Pantanal
Bonito is focused on eco-tourism and as such they only allow a certain number of visitors to eco sites each day. Be sure to book your tours well in advance to not miss out.
For Water Sports (snorkeling), the sites request that you not use sunscreen, tanning lotions, or insect repellent to help keep the waters pristine.
Going hiking in the woods? Wear light colored clothing as dark colored clothing attracts mosquitos!
There are no ATMs, only banks: Banco do Brasil, Bradesco, Caixa Economica and Sicredi, so plan accordingly. Some small restaurants accept cash only.
Shops stay open late in Bonito usually until around 10:00 pm and most accept credit cards.
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