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The Bolivian Pantanal Things to See and Do

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Some of Bolivia’s best wildlife viewing can be found in the Pantanal. Laguna Cáceres, right next to Puerto Suárez, is an 80 square kilometer lake surrounded by dry forest. You can search for animals and birds in the surrounding greenery, fish in the lake itself, or follow one of the canals leading to the Río Paraguay on a boat trip. There is an attractive park in Puerto Suárez on the water’s edge, and a wooden walkway out above the laguna. Other lakes worth exploring by boat include Laguna Madioré, Laguna Gaiba and Laguna Ureraba.

About eight kilometers from Puerto Su√°rez are the Motacucito caves, which average at about 80 meters in depth and have a range of stalagmites and stalactites. In the Parque Nacional y √Ārea Natural de Manejo Integrado Otuquis, the indigenous Otuquis tribe live the same traditional lifestyle as they did in pre-colonial times and the Chiquitanos and Ayoreos ethnic groups are also prominent in the area.

There are a number of balnearios, or outdoor swimming pools, near all the major population bases, where you can splash around and escape from the heat. These include El Salao, five kilometers from Puerto Suarez and Oasis near Puerto Quijarro. In San Matías, you can visit the Centro Ecológico El Tumbador, to learn more about the Pantanal. Laguna Curichó is in easy reach from the town, where you can swim and enjoy the scenery. You can also navigate the Río Curichi Grande by boat, which is especially accessible in the rainy season.

01 Apr 2010

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