About Brazil Luxury Travel
Rio de Janeiro: Rio de Janeiro is set like a gem amid mountains and sea, samba and carnival. It enjoys an easy lifestyle. From Copacabana Beach to the statue of Christ the Redeemer high above the city, Rio makes a grand impression. A cable car up Sugar Loaf Mountain offers panoramic views. The famous statue stands at the peak of the 2,300-foot Corcovado Mountain in the Tijuca National Forest. The wilderness of tropical flora, waterfalls and lagoons can be explored in open 4 x 4 vehicles. Rio afternoons are perfect for lingering in sidewalk cafes, or browsing boutique shops and colorful neighborhoods.
Iguassu Falls: Standing at one particular point, a person can be surrounded by 260 degrees of cascading waterfalls! The stunning falls straddle two countries – Brazil and Argentina. Both sides are designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The Brazilian side features a long walkway with brilliant views and an extension to the lower base of Devil’s Gorge.
Manaus & Amazon Rainforest: This unique ecosystem occupies the greatest share of Brazil’s landscape. The Amazon ranks high on the wish list for most serious travelers. It is spread among nine nations, but 60 percent of it is within Brazil. It represents over half of the planet’s remaining rainforests, and comprises the most species-rich tropical forest in the world. At least 40,000 plant species, 3,000 fish, 1,294 birds, 427 mammals, 428 amphibians and 378 reptiles have been identified. One in five of all the birds on earth are found here. This is also the last refuge of Brazil’s indigenous tribes. Eco-lodges and cruises offer comfortable settings from which to discover this incredible habitat. Activities range from nocturnal canoe trips to encounters with traditional villages. A boat trip to the “Meeting of the Waters,” is a compelling journey to see the black waters of Negro River and the brown waters of Solimões River run together for miles without mixing until they finally turn into the Amazon River.
Salvador: The soul of Brazil, this city is where the nation was founded, and its long history is evident in colonial monuments and African folk culture. The colonial-era slave auction site contrasts markedly with the grandiose baroque São Francisco Church and Convent. Salvador is noted for its cuisine, music and Portuguese colonial architecture. Monuments date from the 17th through the 19th centuries. The old city center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Beaches: The “St. Tropez of South America,” Buzios boasts 20 superb beaches with crystal-clear water, quiet coves and relaxing beaches. Settled by European pirates and slave traders, Buzios evolved into town known for its diverse mix of rustic charm, stylish shops and restaurants. Windsurfing, scuba diving, fishing, snorkeling, and other water sports are options here. Visiting the beaches of Jericoacoara requires special vehicles capable of crossing the sand dunes between the beaches and the nearest road. To preserve the environment, a large area around the village was transformed into Ubajara and Jericoacoara National Park. The town preserves the ambiance of a small fishing village. It has a growing reputation that draws both Brazilian and foreigners to its beautiful beaches and blue-water lakes. Natal, nicknamed “City of Sun,” is known for its giant white sand dunes. The city of Florianópolis consists of one main island, Santa Catarina, and numerous smaller islands. It also boasts 42 beaches! It has been called one the “Ten most dynamic cities of the world,” and the “best place to live in Brazil.” Dune buggy adventures, water sports such as windsurfing, horseback riding on the dunes, and sports fishing are some of the activities that make Brazil’s beaches nearly irresistible.
Ouro Preto: The ‘city of gold’ is encircled by mountains that include a number of caves and grottoes. Founded in 1711, this UNESCO World Heritage City reveals its masterful architectural style in the 1742 Governor’s Palace, the exquisite colonial churches and the planned gardens along cobblestone streets. Ouro Preto also has important metallurgic and mining industries. Minerals of note are gold, hematite, dolomite, tourmaline, pyrite, muscovite, topaz and imperial topaz, which is found only here.
The Pantanal: This vast wetland is a refuge for capybara, caiman, tapir, monkeys and some 600 species of birds including macaws, spoonbills, and jabirus. It is a complex of aquatic and terrestrial environments, including rough arboreal ranges and forests that can be explored on horseback, in open vehicles, and by boat. Outings are guided by bilingual researchers.
Recife & Olinda: Recife is famous for 17th-century architecture, and is one of the largest cities in Brazil. History buffs love these towns for the old quarters, ornate churches and an Inquisition jail. Olinda, a UNESCO World Heritage City, is nearly 500 years old. The Dutch occupied it for 24 years, adding to the cultural mix of Indian, African and Portuguese influences. It is a center for music and arts.
Praia do Forte: An hour north of Salvador, Praia do Forte is in a protected environmental area with about 7.5 miles of semi-deserted beach bordered by lush groves of coconut palms. The area is blessed with a pleasant tropical climate. The Praia do Forte Eco Resort & Thalasso Spa occupies a privileged location, in close proximity to the ecological preserves of Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Forest) with its lagoons and beaches. It offers more than two dozen activities for adults and children, ranging from water sports to soccer. There is an established turtle sanctuary here because sea turtles are drawn to the local beaches annually to lay their eggs. This is also a good location for observing humpback whales and exploring coral reefs. The charming Vila de Pescadores (Fishermen’s Village) and the ruins of the Garcia D’Avila Castle, the only example in the country of medieval architecture, are nearby.
Brasilia: The national capital was planned and developed in 1956, however, the country’s 1891 constitution mandated that the capital be moved from Rio de Janeiro to a place close to the center of the country. Brasilia is the only city in the world planned and built in the 20th century to be awarded the designation of a UNESCO World Heritage Site for the grand, linear architecture of its government buildings, planned gardens and wide avenues.
Suggested Brazil Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Day 2: Rio de Janeiro
Day 3: Rio de Janeiro / Iguassu Falls
Day 4: Iguassu Falls
Day 5: Iguassu Falls / Depart
Custom Brazil Travel Options
Manaus & Amazon Jungle (5 days)
One of the last great ecosystems to be thoroughly studied, the Amazon contains over half of the planet's remaining rainforests.
Salvador da Bahia (4 days)
Colonial monuments contrast with African folk culture as seen at the colonial-era slave auction site.
Beaches (3-4 days)
Brazil’s beaches offer a wide variety of profiles… some are a haven for sunbathers, while others boast giant dunes, quiet coves and rocky coasts. Activities range from scuba diving to horseback riding on the dunes.
Ouro Preto (3 days)
The “City of Gold” is a UNESCO World Heritage City of cobblestone streets, churches and terraced gardens.
The Pantanal (4 days)
Pantanal’s wetlands are a vast refuge for capybara, caiman, tapir, monkeys and some 600 species of birds.
Praia do Forte (3 days)
Luxury spa, semi-deserted beaches bordered by lush groves of coconut palms, and an established turtle sanctuary add up to more than just a beach retreat.
Recife & Olinda (3 days)
These towns are packed with history in atmospheric old quarters, ornate churches and a historic Inquisition jail.
Brasilia (2 days)
Brazil’s futuristic capital was only envisioned in the late 1950s. Its grand architecture and its planned gardens earned it recognition by UNESCO as World Heritage City.