Fazenda São João, Miranda, Brazil

Pantanal with Paraguay in Sight

Alligator crossing
Three pantaneiros cross the farm's alligator-infested lagoon.
Little Camouflaged Alligator
The most feared reptile in the Pantanal, recharging its energies in the sun.
Intrigued herd
Cows suspicious of the approach of outsiders to their pasture.
Pause for Mate II
Pantaneiros live together in a break from the tasks of the farm.
Mangoes on the way to Mature
Hose loaded with mangoes that will be ripe with the arrival of the rainy season.
Pantanal Fashion
Pantaneiro in traditional dress working with cattle in the Pantanal.
camouflaged lizard
Another reptile, semi-camouflaged on the lush grass on the edge of the lagoon of Fazenda de São João.
Pantaneiro Moment
Pantaneiro from the farm in a moment of rest and conversation.
Pantanal Pitéus
The regional food buffet at Fazenda São João.
Ibis alignment
Scarlet ibis fly at low altitude, among the green of the Pantanal.
The Cardinal of the Pantanal
One of the most exuberant small birds in the Pantanal.
hidden sunset
Sun descends to the horizon, behind branches and a dense fog caused by the heat of the afternoon.
The Convivium of the Macaws
Hyacinth macaws live in the shade of a large tree.
A Mirrored Sunset
The setting sun gilds the lagoon of Fazenda de São João.
Angola sleep
Guinea hens sleep under a shed on the farm.
When the Fazenda Passo do Lontra decided to expand its ecotourism, it recruited the other family farm, the São João. Further away from the Miranda River, this second property reveals a remote Pantanal, on the verge of Paraguay. The country and the homonymous river.

We have the first surprise even before we leave.

The guide in charge of accompanying us spoke Portuguese. Not the typical “Brazilian” Portuguese, much less that of the Pantanal region. He spoke in African Portuguese.

When we asked him what had taken him to that interior of Brazil, so far from his Angola, Coutinho tells us that the fact that he also speaks English opened up the prospect of working there on the farm and in tourism.

The opportunity seemed perfect to him, not least because he was going to continue to live in the heat.

He grabbed her as soon as he could.

And it continued there, between the Passo do Lontra and St. John. On the way between the two, sitting in the back of a pickup truck, we talked a little more.

Passo do Lontra to São João Farm: Journey through the Pantanal Rural Area

The dirt road proved to be dusty and straight, but full of small ascents and forced descents in places where, during the rainy season and the flooded Pantanal, it was necessary to avoid its submersion, especially around the great course of nearest water, the Corixo do Cerrado.

We came across iguanas and the inevitable carcarás, a mere introduction to the faunal extension of Passo do Lontra that we were about to encounter.

We enter the property around eleven in the morning, with the summer heat already tightening. The rooms, the hammocks, all the private rooms, in fact, were occupied.

We installed ourselves, like this, in the men's dormitory of the farm, it gave us the idea that there is a lot to use. We shared it with two large frogs who had claimed the “bathroom” as their refreshed domain.

Half an hour later, Coutinho reappears. It invites us to take a guided tour of the farm, in the company of a Bolivian external guide and her Chilean clients.

Ser João, the Elder and Owner of the São João Farm

We skirt the swamp in the heart of the farm when we are surprised by a man already his age, at the controls of a tractor.

Coutinho informs us that it was João Venturini, the owner of the property. As if that weren't enough, he drove a Massey Ferguson, has long been our favorite tractor brand.

We ask you for some photos of your work vehicle. Despite not being used to this type of attention and protagonism, João Venturini agreed.

We position ourselves in such a way as to give you the prominence you deserved, and to avoid unwanted background obstacles.

We are in this process when we feel a growing ardor. On one foot. Right on the other. To the ankles above.

By the time we realized what was going on, the ardor becomes a generalized affliction, a kind of biological fire.

We had been photographing for almost a minute on a huge nest of bullet ants (clavata paraponera), thus treated in Brazil because, with due exaggeration, its bite causes a pain comparable to that inflicted by projectiles.

Ser João Venturini and Coutinho strive to avoid impending laughter. Several shakes and curses later, we anticipated the end of the photo shoot.

Discovering the Pantanal da Fazenda São João

We continue to move away from the farm buildings, along the banks of its lagoon, which we see full of amphibian vegetation, decorated by water lilies, inhabited by juvenile alligators, fattened by the profusion of fish that the drought every year provided them with.

We passed between hyperbolic mango trees, by that time, laden with tiny mangoes, still green miniatures of the succulent and delicious fruit that the muggy heat of the rainy season would make them.

Meanwhile, trees fulfilled another function.

Macaws, Ibis and So many other birds of the Pantanal

They gave shady and sheltered landings to the flocks of macaws that flitted about, given over to their shrill thuds.

As we passed under one of these hoses, we spot four or five, blue ones, with their collars and yellow eye-rims.

They watch us, intrigued, but less apprehensive than we expected.

When, at last, their curiosity passes, they return to the conflicted nibbling in which they had been.

All around, flocks of scarlet ibis and red guarás, as Brazilians prefer to treat them, carry out their own flight choreographies, almost always orderly and well grouped.

First against the tropical foliage, then by the sky that the heat seems to wash away.

From the community of mango trees, we evolved into a vast, waterlogged pasture, the livelihood and livelihood of the herds of horses that the farm did to increase and the herds that were at the origin of the property.

São João Farm, the Sister Farm of Passo do Lontra

Until its conversion, Fazenda São João remained the Venturini family's rural and livestock retreat.

It existed as a counterpoint to Passo do Lontra, a river farm that opened, in 1979, on the banks of the Miranda to respond to a growing demand for this river and the Vermelho, on the part of fishing enthusiasts.

Over time, the family decided to offer Passo do Lontra guests a day to discover their other farm.

When visitors fell in love with her, they began to complain about spending nights there. The Venturini acquiesced. They adapted the property to match.

For example, they installed the hammock area where we no longer found a vacancy. And a picturesque dining room, in a rounded building from which one of the many palm trees in the Pantanal sprouts, a bocaiuva tree, or so it seems to us.

The Always Fascinating Pantanal Gastronomy

In this sheltered shelter, cooks with figures and manners of Dª Benta, from the old “Sítio do Pica-Pau Amarelo”, prepare, display and serve typical Pantanal meals.

Rice and beans, fried cassava (cassava), succulent pies and stewed chicken, from time to time, sacrificed from the flock of guinea fowl that, at the end of the day, we find in a communal sleep on the highest boards of the stable.

The night was announced by a perfect circumference of the sun, veiled by a sky that the afternoon brazier had turned gray and, as we wanted it in our photographs, hidden behind the branches of some dry grove.

The night was filled with mysterious and magical sounds and noises, even around the dormitory we called home.

Snorts of owls and songs of moon mothers, the croaking of frogs in the pond, furtive steps of ocelots and tapirs, crawling of anacondas. All this and much more was to be expected. Until the awakening of the great swamp.

Dawn brings relief from the furnace and even some dew that resists the first two hours of solar ascension. In the marshy pond, the water lilies display an exuberant freshness that only dawn gives them.

The Pantaneiro Cowboys of the São João Farm

We went out for another walk, among alligators in full recharge, tuiuiús repairing the nests and the same herd of the day before, intrigued by the new invasion of their pasture.

When we return, we find a trio of cowboys swamps from the farm returning from some task that the cattle had forced them to do.

They approach at a gentle gallop. When they reach the edge of the lake, they decide on the shortcut and cross it.

The crossing starts off calmly.

Until, in a deeper area, a horse is frightened by an alligator. It rears up and forces the pantaneiro to dominate it, with the mastery of years spent in the saddle.

Jesus and his helpers dismount in the stable. They un saddle the horses, reward them with parties, sit on low chairs and enjoy a rest still dressed.

Hats and leather boots, vaquette pants. Belt equipped with knives and bags with other utensils.

Rest with Tea-Mate Flavor

The conversation flows into a hard work in a few days and how the same work generated unexpected problems on a neighboring farm.

Jesus doesn't even want to think about what's next. Betting on freeing himself from the heat and the responsibility of being the example to follow, he fills a horn of mate with boiling water.

Sip your vitamin tea with the lightness of spirit of someone who has ridden through a thousand tribulations like that.

When the truce ends, one reverts to the shade of the stable and an endless drying rack of straps, harnesses, ribbons and buckles, saddlebags, spurs and similar items.

There is still work to be done there, but the heat and curiosity of the outsiders combine in a fair pretext to postpone the task.

Instead, the elegant pantaneiro leans over one of the bars that serve as bed for guinea hens.

Dazzled by the side of the Atlantic that we are telling you about, he reverses roles.

It confronts us with two or three questions-observations that leave us wondering, which it answers with its Pantanal, down-to-earth way, but so honest to see the world.

In those almost Paraguayan confines of the Pantanal, Brazil made more sense.

Passo do Lontra, Miranda, Brazil

The Flooded Brazil of Passo do Lontra

We are on the western edge of Mato Grosso do Sul but bush, on these sides, is something else. In an extension of almost 200.000 km2, the Brazil it appears partially submerged, by rivers, streams, lakes and other waters dispersed in vast alluvial plains. Not even the panting heat of the dry season drains the life and biodiversity of Pantanal places and farms like the one that welcomed us on the banks of the Miranda River.
Miranda, Brazil

Maria dos Jacarés: the Pantanal shelters such Creatures

Eurides Fátima de Barros was born in the interior of the Miranda region. 38 years ago, he settled in a small business on the side of BR262 that crosses the Pantanal and gained an affinity with the alligators that lived on his doorstep. Disgusted that once upon a time the creatures were being slaughtered there, she began to take care of them. Now known as Maria dos Jacarés, she named each of the animals after a soccer player or coach. It also makes sure they recognize your calls.
manaus, Brazil

The Jumps and Starts of the former World Rubber Capital

From 1879 to 1912, only the Amazon River basin generated the latex that, from one moment to another, the world needed and, out of nowhere, Manaus became one of the most advanced cities on the face of the Earth. But an English explorer took the tree to Southeast Asia and ruined pioneer production. Manaus once again proved its elasticity. It is the largest city in the Amazon and the seventh in Brazil.
Manaus, Brazil

Meeting the Meeting of the Waters

The phenomenon is not unique, but in Manaus it has a special beauty and solemnity. At a certain point, the Negro and Solimões rivers converge on the same Amazonas bed, but instead of immediately mixing, both flows continue side by side. As we explore these parts of the Amazon, we witness the unusual confrontation of the Encontro das Águas.
Pirenópolis, Brazil

A Ride of Faith

Introduced in 1819 by Portuguese priests, the Festa do Divino Espírito Santo de Pirenópolis it aggregates a complex web of religious and pagan celebrations. It lasts more than 20 days, spent mostly on the saddle.
Pirenópolis, Brazil

Brazilian Crusades

Christian armies expelled Muslim forces from the Iberian Peninsula in the XNUMXth century. XV but, in Pirenópolis, in the Brazilian state of Goiás, the South American subjects of Carlos Magno continue to triumph.
Goiás Velho, Brazil

The Life and Work of a Marginal Writer

Born in Goiás, Ana Lins Bretas spent most of her life far from her castrating family and the city. Returning to its origins, it continued to portray the prejudiced mentality of the Brazilian countryside
Chapada Diamantina, Brazil

Gem-stone Bahia

Until the end of the century. In the XNUMXth century, Chapada Diamantina was a land of immeasurable prospecting and ambitions. Now that diamonds are rare, outsiders are eager to discover its plateaus and underground galleries
Iguazu/Iguazu Falls, Brazil/Argentina

The Great Water Thunder

After a long tropical journey, the Iguaçu River gives a dip for diving. There, on the border between Brazil and Argentina, form the largest and most impressive waterfalls on the face of the Earth.
Marajó Island, Brazil

The Buffalo Island

A vessel that transported buffaloes from the India it will have sunk at the mouth of the Amazon River. Today, the island of Marajó that hosted them has one of the largest herds in the world and Brazil is no longer without these bovine animals.
Brasilia, Brazil

Brasília: from Utopia to the Capital and Political Arena of Brazil

Since the days of the Marquis of Pombal, there has been talk of transferring the capital to the interior. Today, the chimera city continues to look surreal but dictates the rules of Brazilian development.
Itaipu Binational Hydroelectric Power Plant, Brazil

Itaipu Binational Hydroelectric Power Plant: Watt Fever

In 1974, thousands of Brazilians and Paraguayans flocked to the construction zone of the then largest dam in the world. 30 years after completion, Itaipu generates 90% of Paraguay's energy and 20% of Brazil's.
Jabula Beach, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa
Saint Lucia, South Africa

An Africa as Wild as Zulu

On the eminence of the coast of Mozambique, the province of KwaZulu-Natal is home to an unexpected South Africa. Deserted beaches full of dunes, vast estuarine swamps and hills covered with fog fill this wild land also bathed by the Indian Ocean. It is shared by the subjects of the always proud Zulu nation and one of the most prolific and diverse fauna on the African continent.
Prayer flags in Ghyaru, Nepal
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit: 4th – Upper Banana to Ngawal, Nepal

From Nightmare to Dazzle

Unbeknownst to us, we are faced with an ascent that leads us to despair. We pulled our strength as far as possible and reached Ghyaru where we felt closer than ever to the Annapurnas. The rest of the way to Ngawal felt like a kind of extension of the reward.
Architecture & Design

the last address

From the grandiose tombs of Novodevichy, in Moscow, to the boxed Mayan bones of Pomuch, in the Mexican province of Campeche, each people flaunts its own way of life. Even in death.
Tibetan heights, altitude sickness, mountain prevent to treat, travel

Altitude Sickness: the Grievances of Getting Mountain Sick

When traveling, it happens that we find ourselves confronted with the lack of time to explore a place as unmissable as it is high. Medicine and previous experiences with Altitude Evil dictate that we should not risk ascending in a hurry.
Ceremonies and Festivities
Apia, Western Samoa

Fia Fia – High Rotation Polynesian Folklore

From New Zealand to Easter Island and from here to Hawaii, there are many variations of Polynesian dances. Fia Fia's Samoan nights, in particular, are enlivened by one of the more fast-paced styles.
Alaskan Lumberjack Show Competition, Ketchikan, Alaska, USA
Ketchikan, Alaska

Here begins Alaska

The reality goes unnoticed in most of the world, but there are two Alaskas. In urban terms, the state is inaugurated in the south of its hidden frying pan handle, a strip of land separated from the contiguous USA along the west coast of Canada. Ketchikan, is the southernmost of Alaskan cities, its Rain Capital and the Salmon Capital of the World.
Margilan, Uzbekistan

An Uzbekistan's Breadwinner

In one of the many bakeries in Margilan, worn out by the intense heat of the tandyr oven, the baker Maruf'Jon works half-baked like the distinctive traditional breads sold throughout Uzbekistan
Casa Menezes Braganca, Chandor, Goa, India
Chandor, Goa, India

A True Goan-Portuguese House

A mansion with Portuguese architectural influence, Casa Menezes Bragança, stands out from the houses of Chandor, in Goa. It forms a legacy of one of the most powerful families in the former province. Both from its rise in a strategic alliance with the Portuguese administration and from the later Goan nationalism.

Man: an Ever Tested Species

It's in our genes. For the pleasure of participating, for titles, honor or money, competitions give meaning to the world. Some are more eccentric than others.
Las Cuevas, Mendoza, across the Andes, Argentina
Mendoza, Argentina

From One Side to the Other of the Andes

Departing from Mendoza city, the N7 route gets lost in vineyards, rises to the foot of Mount Aconcagua and crosses the Andes to Chile. Few cross-border stretches reveal the magnificence of this forced ascent
Pentecost Island, Vanuatu

Naghol: Bungee Jumping without Modern Touches

At Pentecost, in their late teens, young people launch themselves from a tower with only lianas tied to their ankles. Bungee cords and harnesses are inappropriate fussiness from initiation to adulthood.
View of Fa Island, Tonga, Last Polynesian Monarchy
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Got2Globe Portfolio

Exotic Signs of Life

View from John Ford Point, Monument Valley, Nacao Navajo, United States
Monument Valley, USA

Indians or Cowboys?

Iconic Western filmmakers like John Ford immortalized what is the largest Indian territory in the United States. Today, in the Navajo Nation, the Navajo also live in the shoes of their old enemies.
Mdina, Malta, Silent City, architecture
Mdina, Malta

The Silent and Remarkable City of Malta

Mdina was Malta's capital until 1530. Even after the Knights Hospitaller demoted it, it was attacked and fortified accordingly. Today, it's the coastal and overlooking Valletta that drives the island's destinies. Mdina has the tranquility of its monumentality.
Era Susi towed by dog, Oulanka, Finland
Winter White
PN Oulanka, Finland

A Slightly Lonesome Wolf

Jukka “Era-Susi” Nordman has created one of the largest packs of sled dogs in the world. He became one of Finland's most iconic characters but remains faithful to his nickname: Wilderness Wolf.
shadow vs light
Kyoto, Japan

The Kyoto Temple Reborn from the Ashes

The Golden Pavilion has been spared destruction several times throughout history, including that of US-dropped bombs, but it did not withstand the mental disturbance of Hayashi Yoken. When we admired him, he looked like never before.
M:S Viking Tor Ferry-Wrapped Passenger, Aurlandfjord, Norway
Flam a Balestrand, Norway

Where the Mountains Give In to the Fjords

The final station of the Flam Railway marks the end of the dizzying railway descent from the highlands of Hallingskarvet to the plains of Flam. In this town too small for its fame, we leave the train and sail down the Aurland fjord towards the prodigious Balestrand.
Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

Lost among the snowy mountains that separate Europe from Asia, Sheki is one of Azerbaijan's most iconic towns. Its largely silky history includes periods of great harshness. When we visited it, autumn pastels added color to a peculiar post-Soviet and Muslim life.
Matukituki River, New Zealand
Natural Parks
Wanaka, New Zealand

The Antipodes Great Outdoors

If New Zealand is known for its tranquility and intimacy with Nature, Wanaka exceeds any imagination. Located in an idyllic setting between the homonymous lake and the mystic Mount Aspiring, it became a place of worship. Many kiwis aspire to change their lives there.
Dominican Republic, Bahia de Las Águilas Beach, Pedernales. Jaragua National Park, Beach
UNESCO World Heritage
Lagoa Oviedo a Bahia de las Águilas, Dominican Republic

In Search of the Immaculate Dominican Beach

Against all odds, one of the most unspoiled Dominican coastlines is also one of the most remote. Discovering the province of Pedernales, we are dazzled by the semi-desert Jaragua National Park and the Caribbean purity of Bahia de las Águilas.
aggie gray, Samoa, South Pacific, Marlon Brando Fale
Apia, Western Samoa

The Host of the South Pacific

She sold burguês to GI's in World War II and opened a hotel that hosted Marlon Brando and Gary Cooper. Aggie Gray passed away in 2. Her legacy lives on in the South Pacific.
Moorea aerial view
Moorea, French Polynesia

The Polynesian Sister Any Island Would Like to Have

A mere 17km from Tahiti, Moorea does not have a single city and is home to a tenth of its inhabitants. Tahitians have long watched the sun go down and transform the island next door into a misty silhouette, only to return to its exuberant colors and shapes hours later. For those who visit these remote parts of the Pacific, getting to know Moorea is a double privilege.
Hikers on the Ice Lake Trail, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal
Annapurna Circuit: 7th - Braga - Ice Lake, Nepal

Annapurna Circuit – The Painful Acclimatization of the Ice Lake

On the way up to the Ghyaru village, we had a first and unexpected show of how ecstatic the Annapurna Circuit can be tasted. Nine kilometers later, in Braga, due to the need to acclimatize, we climbed from 3.470m from Braga to 4.600m from Lake Kicho Tal. We only felt some expected tiredness and the increase in the wonder of the Annapurna Mountains.
The Toy Train story
On Rails
Siliguri a Darjeeling, India

The Himalayan Toy Train Still Running

Neither the steep slope of some stretches nor the modernity stop it. From Siliguri, in the tropical foothills of the great Asian mountain range, the Darjeeling, with its peaks in sight, the most famous of the Indian Toy Trains has ensured for 117 years, day after day, an arduous dream journey. Traveling through the area, we climb aboard and let ourselves be enchanted.
Nissan, Fashion, Tokyo, Japan
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo's fashion

In ultra-populous and hyper-coded Japan, there is always room for more sophistication and creativity. Whether national or imported, it is in the capital that they begin to parade the new Japanese looks.
Busy intersection of Tokyo, Japan
Daily life
Tokyo, Japan

The Endless Night of the Rising Sun Capital

Say that Tokyo do not sleep is an understatement. In one of the largest and most sophisticated cities on the face of the Earth, twilight marks only the renewal of the frenetic daily life. And there are millions of souls that either find no place in the sun, or make more sense in the “dark” and obscure turns that follow.
Hippopotamus in Anôr Lagoon, Orango Island, Bijagós, Guinea Bissau
Kéré Island to Orango, Bijagós, Guinea Bissau

In Search of the Lacustrine-Marine and Sacred Bijagós Hippos

They are the most lethal mammals in Africa and, in the Bijagós archipelago, preserved and venerated. Due to our particular admiration, we joined an expedition in their quest. Departing from the island of Kéré and ending up inland from Orango.
The Sounds, Fiordland National Park, New Zealand
Scenic Flights
Fiordland, New Zealand

The Fjords of the Antipodes

A geological quirk made the Fiordland region the rawest and most imposing in New Zealand. Year after year, many thousands of visitors worship the sub-domain slashed between Te Anau and Milford Sound.