Argentina: Wildlife and Waterfalls

An exclusive photo safari of the Ibera wetlands and Iguazu waterfalls, expertly guided by renowned photographer Ossian Lindholm

Our exclusive wildlife safari and photography tour of Northeast Argentina combines two uniquely precious destinations that are perfect for landscape and wildlife photography—the endless wetlands of Ibera and the stunning waterfalls of Iguazu. Not only will you be exploring and learning about the natural and cultural wonders of these remarkable areas; our travel photography tour gives you a fantastic opportunity to learn tips from the best.

Each day of your tour we’ll provide you with expert workshops in landscape and wildlife photography. These are run by renowned professional photographer and experienced naturalist, Ossian Lindholm. Ossian is a respected documentary filmmaker too, and has created several documentaries exploring the Iguazu Falls and Ibera. On this unique South American photography expedition you’ll be able to tap into his immense knowledge of—and passionate commitment to—these precious environments.

Ibera: Argentina’s “Brilliant Waters”

The first part of the tour is based in the Ibera wetlands, found in the northwestern province of Corrientes. This vast area of some 7,000 square miles was, until quite recently, pretty much unexplored. Now it is recognized as one of South America’s most important freshwater reservoirs. In fact, after Brazil’s vast Pantanal, Ibera is reckoned to be the one of the biggest wetlands in the world. Its myriad rivers, streams, lakes, and wetlands are all fed by natural rainfall, and make Ibera a wonderful refuge for a huge diversity of wildlife.

Ibera, or “brilliant waters” in the Guarani language, was in fact once the riverbed of the Parana river. Over the years the river’s flow slowed, and a huge “sponge” of vegetative matter and boggy soils built up. This now has an amazing capacity to absorb water, with scientists reckoning it retains up to 1,500 millimeters of rainfall each year.

Like many environmental oases, Ibera has been at serious risk of degradation, mainly as a result of overhunting and overfishing. These activities were destroying the biodiversity of the region, undermining its crucial ecological role, and ruining the local economy. In 1983 the Ibera Nature Reserve was created to help preserve it, and its innumerable and unique species of fauna and flora, for future generations.

The situation changed for the better some 15 years ago, when gaming, poaching, and fishing were completely forbidden. The environmentalists who have worked so hard to protect it now believe Ibera is one of the most remarkable of Argentina’s ecosystems. Today it is open for careful and sensitive exploration, by photographers and nature-lovers from around the world.

In fact, educational and conservation focused tourism, like our guided Ibera tours, have helped ensure the economic success of the area. This, in turn, has helped to guarantee its environmental future: the people who once hunted wildlife here are now its guides and teachers. And as guests in Ibera, you will be making your own contribution to this inspiring and sustainable conservation model.

One of the last natural paradises on earth, with a mild climate and wonderful isolation, Ibera is an area where wild animals really are the stars of the show! Its marshes offer wildlife-lovers countless close-up encounters. There are caimans, capybaras, and giant otters to be spotted in its waters. The marshlands are home to swamp deer, pampas deer, and anaconda. You can also find howler monkeys and greater rheas here—in fact there are over 300 species of birds in Ibera.

It all helps to make a photo expedition to the Ibera wetlands a wildlife photographer’s dream come true. Our photographic tours, with their emphasis on education and total sensory immersion, will showcase its beauty for you from every angle. And most importantly, your tourism dollars will contribute towards sustaining this paradise for generations to come.

Iguazu: The Great Water of Argentina

For the second part of our Travel Vision Journeys photo tour, we visit the Iguazu Falls, declared one of the seven natural wonders of the world. On this exclusive tour you’ll again be partnered with Ossian, a native Argentinian who knows and loves the area well. You will quickly see why it has captured the attention and hearts of so many visitors to the country.

The Iguazu National Park, with its stupendous complex of stepped waterfalls, is one the world’s most visually stunning phenomenon. It lies in the Misiones Province in the northeastern corner of Argentina, and has been a World Heritage Site since 1984. Over the course of some 2 miles, the Iguazu River drops 250 feet, tumbling over a series of roaring waterfalls.

It is also here that the river—given the name of “great water” by the indigenous peoples—curves in a large horseshoe loop around two national parks, one in Argentina and one in Brazil. In fact, this mighty river forms the international border between these two countries, before it merges with the Parana River.

The special atmosphere of this place is immediately apparent to visitors, with great swirls of spray that drench its network of islands and riverine forests. These moist clouds help sustain an extremely humid microclimate, producing a lush and dense foliage home to some truly unique fauna. The Iguazu National Park is also treasured as one of the few remaining fragments of Atlantic Forest—a biome classified as a threatened ecosystem and a global conservation priority.

This forest once covered large parts of the Brazilian coast, ranging as far as Uruguay, eastern Paraguay, and northern Argentina. What little remains today is known for its incredible species diversity, high degree of endemism, and unique habitat. Scientists have counted 80 varieties of tree, some 2,000 plant species, and four hundred species of bird. Foremost among these is the rare harpy eagle, but there are also beautiful wildcats and the rarely-seen broad-snouted caiman to be tracked and captured on camera.

So, for lovers of nature and wildlife who relish delving into the lesser explored corners of our planet, this is a ready-made photography adventure. Argentina’s most renowned and environmentally precious wetlands and waterfall environments offer unsurpassed and abundant encounters with wildlife. An incredible variety of animals and birds, back-dropped by stunning landscapes, guarantee an unforgettable photo safari. And, thanks to the visual alchemy of the photographic experience, this is one trip that’s sure to inspire you for years to come.

Feel free to reach out to our director, Lauren Hefferon at +1-617-640-4837, or lauren@ciclismoclassico.com, for more information. A long-time photo tour professional, she has created, scouted, and will be co-guiding all departures for this exclusive photo adventure.

 

Highlights

  • Daily and abundant close encounters with wildlife
  • Expedition to Ibera, one of the most important freshwater reservoirs on the continent and the second-largest wetland in the world
  • Tranquil boat rides that glide through pristine wetlands
  • Educational talks by local naturalists and conservationists
  • Daily photography instruction and one-on-one coaching with Ossian Lindholm, one of Argentina’s most renowned nature photographers
  • Boutique accommodation and the savoring of local specialties
  • Night photography sessions

Trip Details:

Photo Walking

Price: 2016: $3,900 special introductory rate
2017: $4,900

Single Supplement: 2016: $800 special introductory rate
2017: $950

Length: 2016: 8 days / 7 nights
2017 9 days / 8 nights

Level: Easy

Start/End Locations: Ibera/Ibera, Argentina

Trip Dates:

  • 03/17/17 - 03/25/17
  • 06/03/17 - 06/11/17

Make this tour Private or for more information, call:

800.866.7314

Day by Day

Ibera

You will arrive at Posadas Airport in the Corrientes Province, from where we will escort you in our own private van to Estancia Puerto Valle. Here we will spend three days immersed in the total peace and serenity that Ibera provides. After a stroll around the Estacia’s grounds, we will host our first photography class, which you teach you about the best techniques for capturing wildlife shots. After a well-deserved rest you will be invited to enjoy a welcome feast made up of choice local specialties.

Ibera

Sunrise photography class. We will rise early on your first morning here to make the most of the breathtaking reds, yellows and golds reflecting on the serene Ibera waters. After breakfast, we will navigate along the Parana River, hoping to enjoy sightings of the abundant birds and animals that live here undisturbed. After a picnic lunch we will return to the Estancia, where you can share and review the photos taken during the day.

Ibera

Today, we will get up with the sun, so as to capture the subtle dawn light from another angle. We will share our photographic experiences over a delicious breakfast, before heading to the Estero wetlands in a 4-wheel drive for a chance to gather some more. At lunchtime we will enjoy a picnic of local specialties before heading back to the Estancia, now our beautiful home-away-from home. Before dinner, be sure to stroll around its the vast and delightful grounds—several native and exotic species can be found here. Or simply relax by the pool under the palapa or by the quincho, an area where Argentinians enjoy an asado, a traditional barbecue. Before we eat we will once again host another group photo show, where you can relive memories captured on film. You’ll also receive valuable one-on-one technical and artistic feedback from Ossian—our veritable treasure trove of photographic knowledge and experience.

Ibera, Reserva Cambyreta

After an early breakfast we will head to Reserva Cambyreta in Esteros. Cambyreta is a Nature Reserve created by the Conservation Land Trust, founded by the late Douglas Tompkins and his wife Kris. We are very proud to participate in this project, and support their remarkable initiatives that continue to make a real difference across South America.

Iguazu Falls

After an early breakfast we will begin a five-hour journey across the beautiful Misiones Province, heading towards the spectacular Iguazu falls. Our home for the next three nights will be the Sheraton, the only hotel to be found inside this famed National Park. After an early dinner we will head to bed to rest, and maybe to dream of the following three fantastic days at the falls! Get your cameras, lenses, and senses ready to photograph the falls from every possible angle and at every time of day—including by moonlight!

Iguazu Falls

Declared one of the seven natural wonders of the world, Iguazu has nearly 2 miles of braided waterfalls, spilling down through the dense jungle forest of the National Park. We will rise early to enjoy the misty falls before sunrise. Iguazu offers a remarkable array of compositional opportunities—from sweeping panoramas and stunning rainbows to the mirrored reflections in individual droplets. Ever present is the distinctive atmosphere of its misty waterfall light.

After a full day, we will return to our hotel, where you can admire your growing portfolio of waterfall photography. A delicious dinner follows and, after dessert, we’ll take a stroll and see if we can capture the night’s subtle interplay of moonlight and water.

Iguazu

The falls are located in an fascinating ecosystem that offers photographic opportunities beyond the falls themselves. Today we may see toucans, river turtles, teeming birdlife and fragile spider webs. After lunch we will visit the “Hummingbird Garden," a truly unique place where you are surrounded by hummingbirds flying freely all around. Here we will learn the intricate art of photographing these delicate avian delights from the hummingbird master himself. After a full day—and hopefully countless superb photos—we will head back to our hotel for our final dinner celebration. this will be the chance to review your favorite photos, taken over the course of our unequalled nature and wildlife photo safari.

Iguazu & Adios!

Final photos and Adios! After breakfast we will snap our final morning photographs in the National Park. Then it will be time to transfer to the Posadas airport.

What's Included

Trip Planning

  • Two expert guides throughout the program
  • Airport shuttles

On The Tour

  • 12-person van
  • Water and dried fruits to snack on board the van
  • Entrance fees to museums and archaeological sites
  • Select wine tastings

Accommodations & Meals

  • All accommodations
  • All meals

Meet the Guides