The Brazilian Pantanal
Welcome to one of the great works of the Pacha Mama: the Pantanal, the largest wetland on the face of the Earth and one of the greatest spectacles in terms of landscapes, flora and fauna. While it is huge and occupies part of Bolivian and Paraguayan territory, the largest and most accessible part is in Brazil, particularly in Mato Grosso do Sul. There are many places to visit, but it is not easy to get around in this area on your own and hiring a tour is expensive. But no worries if you have no money… There is always a way!
If you come from Bolivia (as it was my case), the easiest way to visit it is from the border city of Corumbá, an interesting and peculiar population with several things to do, by the way. Here you can hire a tour with an agency or take a bus to the nearby entrance of the Estrada Parque Pantanal, a dirt road that crosses the marshy ecosystem and that allows you to spot animals such as capybaras, alligators, peccaries and birds of all kinds: tuiuiú (or jaburu), toucans, macaws… You can do it on your own by hitchhiking or renting a car (be careful, especially with alligators), combined with some incursion to more restricted areas hiring a tour in the lodges that you will find along the Estrada. You can even negotiate for room and board in addition to the tour.
If you have extra time, money and feel like you want to know more places in the Pantanal after this, you can always go to other destinations (but, again, it is not easy on your own). Also, it is highly recommended to visit other places outside the Pantanal, like Bonito, about 4 hours by car. Over there await waterfalls and crystal-clear rivers, caverns and much more...