The lodge lies beside Rio Mutúm, just before the river becomes two lakes, the largest of which is 15km in diameter.There are 22 red-roof chalets set within a relaxing landscaped garden, with each attractive room having air-con, ceiling fan, mosquito mesh, bathroom and veranda with hammock. Other facilities include a thatched restaurant and bar (drinks not included in cost), TV room and swimming pool.
Friendly Pousada do Rio Mutum is a 3-hour drive from Cuiabá airport. Red-roofed chalets house modest but cosy and brightly decorated rooms with en suite facilities and mosquito screening. There is a swimming pool, shady patio and a large thatched restaurant serving hearty buffet meals, including a nightly chance to try soup made from piranhas freshly caught by guests during the day. Thanks to its position at the point where the Rio Mutum merges with two lakes, there are frequent sightings of giant river otter from the lodge. The surroundings are quite thickly forested and support a rich variety of bird life; red and green macaws are seen in abundance. Capybaras graze nearby and after nightfall they appear en masse within the grounds. Guides are well-informed, and excursions, which include kayaking on the river at sunrise, as well as nature walks and horse riding, are suitable for most ages and abilities.
When to go:
From Jan-Mar, heavy rainfall results in widespread flooding, with wildlife packed onto islands above the water level. Apr-Jun the waters recede and water-birds return to the isolated lakes, while Jul-Sep (winter) wildlife is at its most abundant - though it can take cover during cold snaps. The highest temperatures (up to 40°C) are reached in Nov-Dec. Insect life (including mosquitoes) is less abundant in winter.
The Pantanal is inhabited by similar species to those of the Amazon but you have a much better chance of spotting them. Staying in a remote lodge here is a real get-away-from-it-all experience, but the programme of wildlife safari expeditions means there's plenty to do each day.
Activities at the lodge: