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Barranco Alto Eco-Lodge
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All reviewsgiant anteaterother guestshyacinth macawsthe riverhorse ridingfood is excellentmango treebird lifeflora and faunaon footcanoe tripwonderful placegame drivesamazing wildlifewonderful hostsknowledgeable guideshis wife
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Reviewed September 2, 2012

This is a wonderful place to stay.The house has only 4 rooms for guests, there is no need for security or locked doors. It feels like your own house. Our room was very comfortable with a screened porch looking down to the river.The food was very good, and eaten altogether at a large table.The public areas are very comfortable, with lots of books ,and comfy chairs to have your pre dinner Caiperinha!
The owners Lucas and Marina are very involved in the everyday running of the property and take a personal interest in all of their guests.The 2 guides, Hugo and Carol,are outstanding, they are extremely knowledgeable about all aspects of the Pantanal region.They also both take the time to find out what your personal interests are,and try to ensure you see everything you would like.
The activities are very flexible, you can do as much or as little as you like,and repeat an activity if that's what you want to do.
The big surprise here was that it was very cold! A cold front passed through for nearly all of our stay, we had to wear far more than we anticipated.But having been far too hot in the North Pantanal it was not unpleasant to be cooler, and the upside was that there were very few mosquitos, and the animals that normally keep cool in the forests were very visible.Giant anteaters, tapirs, armadillos, plus the usual capybara, howler monkeys, and caimen, were out and about daily.Plus a puma on one occasion.The bird life is truly astounding too.
Our time here passed very quickly, we enjoyed it all thoroughly. A truly amazing place with amazing guides for a once in a lifetime experience.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank llewellynroger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 30, 2012

I am a retired biology professor who did research for about ten years down river at the Fazenda Rio Negro. Back in June I took my wife to Baranco Alto and virtually within minutes she understood why I loved the Pantanal so much and had returned some 20 plus times because the biodiversity here that one can easily see in just a few days is boundless.

Lucas and his staff have created a gem of a eco-lodge in a still pristine region of one of the most fascinating ecosystems on this planet. Although small in relative scale, FBA has all the trappings associated with very upscale game lodges that one finds in East and South Africa, except that here small is so much better and one ends up feeling a strong sense of friendship not only with Lucas, Carol, Hugo, and Lydia, but with the other guests as well. During our three night visit there were guests from the UK, Netherlands, Hong Kong, and the USA so conversations at meals and the down times were interesting and expansive.

There is little more in agreement that I can offer to what has already been posted, except to say that my wife and i are already planning to book for a long week next summer.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Hemipenes14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 9, 2012

This is a great lodge if you decide to go to the Southern Pantanal. We would normally get up at 6, have breakfast and be ready for the morning excursion which departed at 7. We would come back at 10.30-11 and lunch would be served around noon. After an afternoon siesta in the hammocks the afternoon excursions would normally start at 3 with a stop for a drink and snacks watching the sunset before doing spot lighting in the dark going back. Caipirinhas or beers (all drinks except wine is included) were served before dinner which would normally start at 7-8. We found that if you ask the day in advance they are fairly flexible around what activity you do with options being boat ride (including piranha fishing), canoeing (with breakfast on the river bank), horse riding and game drives. The afternoon activities are normally game drives.

Before going I found it difficult to decide on whether to go to the Northern or Southern Pantanal. I now understand that where you should go depends on what animals you would like to see. If you really want to see a jaguar you should go to the north as you are quite unlikely to see that here, however up north you see more birds and monkeys but little other large animals as most excursions will be done by boat – or so I was told by someone staying at the lodge who had been up north first. In the south you are likely to see giant ant eater, tapir, capybaras, coati, pigs, armadillos, giant otters, lots of caimans, howler monkeys and lots and lots of different types of birds. If you want to see giant anteaters the south is best and you should be aware that they don’t like hot weather so July is a good time to go. When it gets above 28 degrees they tend to stay in the forest. We saw 7 during the 5 days we were here and it is great how you can go out of the car to get closer. From other guests we heard that the set up was much better here than what they had experienced in the North. Tapirs start to arrive in mid July with August and September being the months when you are most likely to see one. September is apparently best for toucans.

Drive – the drive to get here was a lot longer than I thought. I think the 5hours often mentioned is when the road is completely dry which from what I understand is often only September and October. It took us 8.5h to reach Barranco Alto. There is about 2h on an asphalt road (without stops) leading to a small town called Aquiduana at which point you will join a dirt road which is fairly good. I think we drove c1.5 on this road before taking a left down some smaller roads. This is where all the gates will start and if you open the gates yourself (rather than having the driver do it) you will probably save about 40min – that should give you an indication as to how many gates there are…

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank KDBB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barrancoalto, Manager at Barranco Alto Eco-Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 17, 2012

Dear KDBB,

Thank you for your detailed review, we feel very honored.
Normally, between May and November the road trip takes about 6 hours. But this year we had very unexpected heavy rains in May/June which resulted in a totally flooded road early July, something never seen before.

Warmest,
Barranco Alto staff

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 3, 2012

I cannot speak too highly of our 4 day stay at the Fazenda Barranco Alto.......a fascinating and highly enjoyable experience for the whole family, even for cynical teenagers! Nature at its best -lakes, rivers, woodlands, birds, a variety of wildlife, caimans, otters; by Toyota, by horseback, by boat or canoe, river swims, all in total freedom. A magnificent electrical storm one afternoon, was particularly memorable. Friendly and knowledgeable guides, excellent meals, comfortable rooms and a warm welcome, well organised, good access by light plane - we will certainly return!

Room Tip: There are only a few rooms, as the Fazenda is small and friendly, but both our doubles with en-suite were fine!
  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with family
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5  Thank Toby G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2012

Living on the rytm of nature. Fishing piranha's on the river bank surrounded by caymens. Horsbackriding, kayaking, jeepsafari,... Its all there!
Very friendly and professional staf.
We had a fantastic stay!

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank LaurentKristen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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