The world’s fifth largest country could fit India into its top pocket and still leave space for another few nations to slip in comfortably too.
It’s not the destination for a casual, see-what-happens family holiday but it is one of earth’s greatest adventures, keeps several of the planet’s most spectacular landscapes within its boundaries and will never fail to amaze and stun on a minute-by-minute basis.
Brazil has 20 UNESCO World Heritage sites including the Central Amazon and the Iguaçu National Park.
Direct flights all year round from the UK to Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo – flying time between 11 and 15 hours.
The Central Amazon Rainforest in Brazil (Amazonas) is one of the world’s top five eco-tourism destinations.
Brazil has over 8000km of coastline and some of the world’s most iconic beaches from Ipanema and Copacabana in Rio to, lesser known legends like Lopes Mendes on Ilha Grande and Santa Catarina’s Lagoinha do Leste.
Brazil’s the world’s most bio-diverse country with more than 50,000 plant species and more known species of mammals and fish. The Pantanal is Earth’s largest area of tropical wetland, covering almost 195,000km² and most of it lies in central Brazil’s Mato Grosso do Sul region, now a UNESCO World Heritage site. As the only country with both the Equator and Tropic of Capricorn running through it, Brazil has eight different climate zones and several micro-climates.
Rio might not be the capital of Brazil any more, but it’s the country’s most visited city and one of the most icon-packed in the Southern Hemisphere with: Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado; Sugar Loaf Mountain; Ipanema and Copacabana beaches; and the annual Mardi Gras Carnival, unrivalled still for scale, glamour, beads and bikinis.
The north east region of Brazil has the country’s most temperate climate and thousands of kilometres of tropical beaches.
Amazonas in the far north west of Brazil is the country’s largest state and has South America’s biggest portion of Amazon Rainforest. It’s a major eco-tourism destination and almost all activities are centred around historic Manaus.
The Pantanal is one of the world’s great wilderness landscapes, the largest wetlands on earth and it’s almost all in the south west of Brazil, right on the Paraguayan border. The area’s second only to Amazonas as an eco-destination and the best way to adventure here as a family is on an eco-cruise or as guests of an eco-resort specialising in local area tours and experiences.
The largest city in the Southern Hemisphere, São Paulo’s the creative and cultured heart of Brazil with over 100 museums and galleries, almost 200 theatres and dozens of parks, gardens and exhibition spaces. Sampa, as it’s known locally, is as hectic and crowded as Rio but it’s a lot less touristy and the atmosphere’s more business-like than hedonistic.
Near São Paulo, don’t miss: Ubatuba’s 100 plus beaches on Anchieta Island; water sports on Cabras Island; the São Sebastião coastal region.
No surprise that a country the size of Brazil has dozens of. ‘best in world…..’ road trips. But, unless you’re planning to be here for months, driving’s the most inconvenient and time-consuming way to travel.
Direct flights from Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo connect to main airports in every region and, in some cases, to smaller provincial airports. Another inter-region option is the country’s network of luxury buses called leitos. These normally operate overnight services, have fully reclining seats and cost less than flights.
Don’t drive in cities: public transport’s generally good and keeps late hours, taxis are easy to find, just make sure they’re official city taxis and agree fares in advance.