An extraordinary year in the life of Leanne Baker travel blog


So we are accosted at the bus terminal (none of which have names on, so it is pot luck you got off at the right stop) by two hostel touts. Craig insists we go with the same company that he went with before (Ecological Expeditions), I am dubious and still take a flyer from the smarter Santa Clara outfit but Craig again says "honestly they were great last time".

We arrive at the hostel and then try to barter the tout down - "but you are rich British on holiday", err no we are backpackers probably living on less than you are! He tells Craig that the camp he stayed at last time no longer exists as they have moved to a much better campsite, he says he will also throw in a night at the luxury lodge they have just purchased. I am still thinking we should go to the Santa Clara place to make sure. He promises that we will have horse riding, swimming, fishing, boat rides - the lot! all of which is stated on the brochure. He then says he cannot take cards - even though there is a card machine right next to him and says we would go to the bank in town to pay him in cash.

Well, if you ever go to Campo Grande - take money in advance. None, that's none, of the cash machines will accept our bank cards!! We went to around 14!! Begrudgingly we have to use our credit card. When we arrive back at the hostel and the guy tells us "oh by the way there is a HSBC next to the hostel, did I not tell you?". I hate this guy already!

After a couple of hours sitting in the oldest laundry room I have ever seen - it had a mangle! We have a fitful night's sleep in a room where the fan looked like it was about to eject itself from the ceiling into one of our heads at any moment.

Onwards to the Pantanal!

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