Bonito is a small town in the southwest of Brazil, near the Paraguay and Bolivian borders. It is located near a large national park, so it is the gateway to many outdoor activities. The main activity that we participated in there was snorkeling down the Rio da Prata, which means the River of Silver. This is an amazingly clear freshwater river. We borrowed an underwater camera from someone, and our pictures really don’t do it justice. This was such a beautiful aquatic world.

Rio da Prata

The Rio da Prata ecological reserve where we went snorkeling was about 60 km. outside of Bonito. The river is fed from freshwater springs, which is why it is so clear. We spent approximately three and a half hours hiking and snorkeling through the jungle. It was amazing!

Sydney snorkeling

Group snorkeling photo

Rio da Prata

Rio da Prata

Rio da Prata

Rio da Prata

Rio da Prata

We saw lots of really cool fish, a few monkeys, and some toucans! There were several spots in the river that had “boiling” sand, where the springs that feed the river bubble up through the sandy riverbed.

Boiling sand


Before we went snorkeling, we hung out near the main building and saw several different tropical birds. We saw some small Peach-fronted Parakeets, both in the trees and at feeders.

Peach fronted Parakeet

We also saw several Scarlet Macaws that were in the trees and were interested in whatever we were doing.

Red-and-Green Macaw

The Anhinga that we saw at Iguazu Falls was also fishing along the river. It is a really large bird that is almost three feet tall.


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