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Discover the Top Destinations for Coach Travel with Just Go Holidays

Are you looking to explore new destinations but want a hassle-free and comfortable travel experience? Look no further than coach travel with Just Go Holidays. With their extensive range of destinations and expertly planned itineraries, you can sit back, relax, and let the journey unfold before your eyes. In this article, we will take a closer look at some of the top destinations you can discover through coach travel with Just Go Holidays.

The Beauty of the British Isles

If you’re looking to explore the stunning landscapes and rich history that the British Isles have to offer, coach travel with Just Go Holidays is the perfect choice. From the rolling hills of Scotland to the rugged coastlines of Wales, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

One popular destination is the Scottish Highlands. Picture yourself gazing out over Loch Ness or exploring the historic castles that dot the landscape. With a knowledgeable tour guide leading the way, you’ll learn about Scotland’s fascinating history and immerse yourself in its vibrant culture.

For those seeking a coastal getaway, why not consider a trip to Cornwall? Experience sandy beaches, picturesque fishing villages, and breathtaking cliffs as you journey through this beautiful region. From visiting iconic landmarks like St. Michael’s Mount to indulging in fresh seafood delicacies, there are endless possibilities for exploration.

European Adventures Made Easy

If you’re dreaming of exploring Europe but are unsure where to start or how to navigate multiple countries efficiently, coach travel with Just Go Holidays can make it happen. With carefully crafted itineraries that include must-see sights and hidden gems alike, you can truly make your European adventure unforgettable.

One popular destination among travelers is Italy. From romantic cities like Venice and Florence to historical gems like Rome and Pompeii, Italy offers a wealth of cultural experiences waiting to be discovered. Imagine strolling through ancient ruins or indulging in authentic Italian cuisine while taking in the sights and sounds of this picturesque country.

For a taste of Eastern European charm, why not consider a trip to Prague and Budapest? Explore the cobblestone streets of Prague’s Old Town, marvel at the stunning architecture of Budapest’s Parliament building, and soak in the rich history and vibrant energy that these cities have to offer. With Just Go Holidays, you can experience the best of Europe without the stress of planning.

Coastal Retreats and Scenic Drives

If you’re a fan of coastal retreats and scenic drives, coach travel with Just Go Holidays has got you covered. Whether you’re looking to explore the rugged beauty of the Scottish coastline or soak up the sun on England’s south coast, there are plenty of options to choose from.

One popular destination is the stunning Jurassic Coast in Dorset. This UNESCO World Heritage Site offers breathtaking views, dramatic cliffs, and beautiful sandy beaches. Explore charming coastal towns like Lyme Regis and Weymouth or take a leisurely stroll along one of the many coastal paths for an unforgettable experience.

For those seeking a more adventurous coastal getaway, why not consider a trip to the Scottish Highlands? Experience driving along some of Scotland’s most scenic routes, such as the North Coast 500. From picturesque lochs to majestic mountains, this drive will take your breath away at every turn.

Festive Delights

If you’re looking to add some festive cheer to your travel plans, coach travel with Just Go Holidays offers a range of exciting options during holiday seasons. From Christmas markets in Germany to New Year celebrations in Edinburgh, there are plenty of opportunities to make lasting memories.

One popular destination is Cologne’s Christmas markets. Immerse yourself in a winter wonderland as you wander through stalls filled with handmade crafts, delicious food, and festive decorations. With Just Go Holidays taking care of all your travel arrangements, you can focus on soaking up the magical atmosphere and indulging in the holiday spirit.

For a unique New Year’s Eve experience, consider joining the Hogmanay celebrations in Edinburgh. From the iconic torchlight procession to the world-famous fireworks display, this Scottish tradition is a must-see for any traveler. With Just Go Holidays, you can ring in the new year in style while enjoying hassle-free travel and expertly planned itineraries.

In conclusion, coach travel with Just Go Holidays provides a convenient and comfortable way to explore a wide range of destinations. Whether you’re looking to discover the beauty of the British Isles, embark on an adventure through Europe, explore coastal retreats, or indulge in festive delights, Just Go Holidays has something for everyone. So why wait? Start planning your next coach travel adventure today.

This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.


travel destinations in brazil

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17 Best Places to Visit in Brazil

Last updated on November 2, 2023 by Kay Pierce - 23 Comments

Famous for being home to one of the world’s top football teams, the Rio de Janeiro Carnival and the remarkable Iguazu Falls, Brazil is an exciting world travel destination. As South America’s largest country, Brazil covers a majority of the continent’s northeastern region and borders all of its countries except for Chile and Ecuador .

From the Amazon rainforest in the North to the tropical beaches along the Atlantic , to the Pantanal wetlands and the vibrant metropolises of the Southeast there are plenty of interesting places to visit in Brazil .

In this post, we'll cover:

17. Jericoacoara


Located in the northeast of Brazil in the state of Ceara, Jericoacoara is a lovely, laidback place nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and a national park of the same name. Often referred to as Jeri or Jijoca, the small and secluded seaside town boasts some of the most beautiful scenery in Brazil and is an increasingly popular tourist destination.

Besides its beautiful beaches, Jeri is surrounded by delightful dunes and lagoons that offer countless recreational opportunities, with hiking, swimming and watersports all very popular. Exploring the area on horseback or in dune buggies is a fantastic way to see as much of its splendid scenery as possible; Pedra Furada – or the ‘Arched Rock’ – is the standout sight and symbol.

While its remote setting makes visiting Jericoacoara a challenge, it is well worth the effort for its sumptuous scenery, wealth of outdoor activities, and surprisingly lively nightlife.

16. Sao Paulo

Sao Paulo

Not only is Sao Paulo the largest city in Brazil, but it is also one of the largest in the world according to population. Located in southeastern Brazil, Sao Paulo is known for its skyscrapers, gastronomy and robust culture scene. Home to many ethnic groups from all over the globe including the largest Japanese community outside of Japan.

Dividing the city between its old and new districts, Paulista Avenue is the city’s busiest strip, brimming in businesses, shopping malls, art galleries, theaters and restaurants. Although Sao Paulo is known for its concrete jungle, it is also home to a large number of public parks and even portions of the Atlantic rainforest.

15. Brasilia


Located in the Brazilian Highlands, Brasilia was installed in 1960 as Brazil’s capital. Brazil’s former President Juscelino Kubitschek of the late 1950s ordered the city to be planned and developed into what some refer to as a utopia. Brasilia’s modern day infrastructure is designed in the shape of an airplane in which each of its sections serve as different districts such as government, commercial, residential and cultural.

Brasilia’s new and creative architecture attracts many visitors. Most significant is the Three Powers Square, which houses the Presidential Palace , the Congress and the Supreme Court. Other important buildings include the Palácio da Alvorada, the President’s official residence and the TV Tower. The Brasilia Cathedral with its glass roof that resembles hands reaching up to heaven is a must visit.

In addition to all its concrete, steel and glass, Brasilia also features a large artificial lake and several beautiful parks that all offer a variety of leisure activities. The capital is also an important transportation hub for travel within Brazil.

14. Ouro Preto

Ouro Preto

Tucked away among the mountains of Minas Gerais, Ouro Preto is the most picturesque, popular, and well-preserved colonial town in Brazil. As it was one of the main centers of the Brazilian Gold Rush , wealth and riches poured into its streets – along with the power and prestige that came with it.

Strung out across a series of hills, its historic center is full of steep, winding cobbled streets that meander past gorgeous old buildings and 18th-century churches. The small city also has several interesting museums for visitors to check out; many of these focus on the artworks of Aleijandinho or Ouro Preto’s mining past.

Many people visit the city for its rich history and culture or to visit the numerous mines via a guided tour. In recent years, Ouro Preto’s colorful carnival has attracted more and more revelers to its ancient streets.


Lying in the southwest corner of Mato Grosso do Sul, the small city of Bonito is a great place to go in Brazil if you are looking to explore the gorgeous Pantanal region. While there’s not all that much to see or do in the town itself, it has long been the posterchild of sustainable ecotourism in Brazil.

Awash with natural wonders, the area surrounding Bonito is home to sparkling waterfalls, gushing rivers, and huge sinkholes and lake-filled caves that you can go swimming or snorkeling in. Hiking in the lush rainforest is also popular, with lots of colorful fauna and flora to be spied in Serra da Bodoquena National Park .

Many companies operate out of Bonito’s pousadas, and excursions usually focus on the Pantanal’s rich ecology and ecosystems. Among the most popular are snorkeling below underwater stalagmites at Anhumas Abyss, enjoying a canopy walk in the rainforest, and exploring Blue Lake Cave – one of the largest flooded caves in the world.

12. Fortaleza


Nice beaches, dynamic shopping and lively culture all make Fortaleza one of Brazil’s popular tourist destinations. The capital of the Ceará state on the country’s northeastern coast, Fortaleza is Brazil’s fifth largest city, well-known for its forró music .

Featuring a mix of colonial and modern day architecture, Fortaleza offers plenty of things to see and do. Praça do Ferreira is the city’s main square where restaurants, shops and a movie theater are all located. Praça José de Alencar is another popular square where street performers can be observed.

Fortaleza’s 16 miles of urban beaches are one of the reasons many tourists flock to the city. The most popular beach is Praia do Futuro , but other favorites are Iracema, Mucuripe and Meireles. Not only are the beaches great for swimming, sunbathing, fishing and surfing competitions, but they also offer hotels, restaurants and markets. Fortaleza also serves as the jumping-off point for many visitors to truly spectacular beaches, rolling dunes and idyllic fishing villages along the Ceará coast.

The shopping experience in Fortaleza is another of its main attractions. Because the city is home to a large textile industry, clothing is cheap here. Local handicrafts and fresh seafood and produce can be found among the city’s markets while the Iguatemi Mall offers a little of everything.

11. Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park

Chapada dos Veadeiros

Home to sparkling lakes, dramatic waterfalls , and stunning landscapes – as well as some of the oldest and most biodiverse tropical ecosystems in the world – Chapada dos Veadeiros really is a treat to explore. Covering a huge area in the center of Brazil, the marvelous microregion can be found in the state of Goias, some three hours drive north of the nation’s capital Brasilia.

Chapada dos Veadeiros’ main attraction is the wonderful national park of the same name that lies atop an ancient rainforest-coated plateau . Scarred by jagged cliffs and crumbling canyons, the park is fascinating to hike around, with lots of awe-inspiring waterfalls hidden away among its verdant flora and fauna.

Other highlights include the appropriately named Moon Valley , which is home to lunar landscapes. Swimming and bathing in any one of the numerous waterfalls and rivers that dot the area is a must-do. The two main places to stay when visiting Chapada dos Veadeiros are Alta Paraiso and Sao Jorge, a small city and village which lie not too far from all of the main sights.


A paradise of tropical forests, waterfalls, emerald sea and coastal mountains, Parati is a popular tourist destination located along Brazil’s Green Coast in the Rio de Janeiro state. Also spelled Paraty, this beautiful city is a former Portuguese colony established on the shores of the Bay of Ilha Grande.

The heart of Parati is its historic center with cobbled streets and multicolored colonial houses, many of which now serve as bed-and-breakfast accommodations called pousadas . Some of the most visited attractions here are the colonial defense forts that still boast original walls and cannons. The historic center of Parati is pedestrian-only .

Surrounding the city are several beautiful parks and nature preserves where visitors can hike and explore the natural setting of mangrove forest, waterfalls and wildlife. There are also indigenous villages here that can be visited. The bay offers gorgeous beaches where visitors can enjoy swimming, kayaking, snorkeling, diving and boat cruises.


Nicknamed the “ Venice of Brazil ” because of its numerous waterways and bridges, Recife is the capital of the Pernambuco state and one of the largest and most important cities on Brazil’s northeastern coast. Situated amid tropical forests with many islands and rivers, Recife is an interesting place to visit because of its historic old town, beaches and vibrant culture.

Recife was a Dutch colony during the early 17th century, and nowhere is this more evident than the city’s historic district where many colonial buildings still remain. Some of the most significant structures include the oldest synagogue in the Americas and one of Brazil’s most beautiful baroque churches, the Franciscan Convent of Saint Anthony.


Saint Peter Square is also noted for its history and picturesque setting of colorful buildings, shops and restaurants.

The city’s main market, the Sao José Market , is a popular place to find traditional handicrafts, medicinal herbs and locally produced food. Recife’s beaches are considered some of the best in Brazil. Lined with hotels, restaurants and bars, Boa Viagem is the most popular beach with its pristine white sands, clear water and coral reef.

8. Chapada Diamantina National Park

Chapada Diamantina

Created in 1985 to protect, preserve, and promote its spectacular scenery and rich ecosystems, Chapada Diamantina National Park lies in the northeast of Brazil in the center of the state of Bahia. Popular among nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts, the park encompasses everything from dramatic mountain ranges and sweeping valleys to teeming rivers and towering waterfalls.

As it is set atop of a plateau, the park is very mountainous, with its tallest peaks reaching more than 2,000 meters. Crumbling, rugged cliffs line the plateau, as do lots of epic waterfalls ; the awe-inspiring 380-metre-high Cachoeira da Fumaca is the tallest in Brazil. Cavernous caves also punctuate its rugged terrain, with Lapa Doce and Pratinha two of the largest.

Chapada Diamantina

Thanks to its diverse landscapes and gorgeous scenery, Chapada Diamantina National Park is an increasingly popular tourist destination. Visitors can choose to either camp or stay in one of the small towns, such as Lencois and Vale de Capao. Horseback riding and hiking are popular pastimes, as is swimming in the rivers and pools of the area.


One of Brazil’s best-preserved colonial cities, Olinda is located on the country’s Atlantic Coast in the northeastern state of Pernambuco. Founded by the Portuguese in the early 16th century, the city served as the state’s capital until it was burned by the Dutch, thereafter losing its sovereignty to its nearby neighbor, Recife.

Perched on a picturesque hilltop surrounded by trees, Olinda’s historic downtown is a treasure trove of colonial churches, colorful old houses and numerous artisan studios. Because of its love affair with art, Olinda packs many shops and markets selling paintings, ceramics, sculptures and handicrafts.


Every year, Olinda hosts its lively Carnival celebration that differs somewhat from those of Rio de Janeiro and Salvador in that Olinda’s festival is best at daytime and features the music, dances and traditions of African culture . Olinda’s Carnival involves parades, lavish costumes, giant puppet dolls, street parties and the rhythms of maracatu and frevo.

However, even outside of the Carnival season, Olinda offers an animated culture where every weekend buzzes with parties, bars, nightclubs and singing groups who perform serenades of traditional songs in the streets.

6. Pantanal


Covering a vast swathe of western Brazil, as well as parts of Paraguay and Bolivia , the Pantanal is the world’s largest and most diverse tropical wetland area. Due to its stunning scenery and incredible wildlife, the region is increasingly popular to visit, although its remote and watery nature does pose a few challenges.

During the rainy season, around 80 percent of the floodplains are submerged, so the only way to get around is by plane or boat. It is worth it, however; the endless marshes and grasslands are home to an astounding array of fauna and flora.


Besides exploring the scenic landscapes ranging from swamps and savanna to lakes, forests, and wetlands, visitors are also sure to spot many caiman and capybara . The highlight of any trip is spotting the South American jaguar ; the Pantanal is the best place on the continent to catch a glimpse of the elusive creature.

5. Florianopolis


The capital of Santa Catarina state, Florianopolis lies in the south of Brazil, with half of the city set on the mainland and the other on a beautiful island . Due to its scenic setting, it is a very popular tourist destination and is widely considered one of the best places to live in the country.

An important economic, cultural, and political center, Florianopolis is a modern city with lots of large shopping malls and chic restaurants, as well as lively bars and nightclubs. Despite this, it is a lovely laidback place, and each of its neighborhoods has its own distinct identity.

The main attraction, however, is the wealth of fabulous beaches . While relaxing in the gorgeous scenery is divine, Florianopolis also has stunning dunes, sparkling waterfalls, and forested mountains – as well as a large lagoon for visitors to explore. Hiking and cycling around the ‘Magic Island’ (which it is also known as) are popular activities, as are paragliding and watersports.


The capital of the Amazonas state in northwestern Brazil, Manaus is an important tourist destination because it serves as a gateway to the Amazon rainforest .

As a result of the region’s flourishing rubber industry during the early 20th century, Manaus today is Northern Brazil’s largest metropolitan area, featuring distinguished landmarks like the Amazonas Opera House , the Adolpho Lisboa Market and the Rio Negro Palace.

Amazonas boat

Not only is the port of Manaus an important commercial hub for several manufacturing industries, but it also serves as the most popular starting point for river tours into the Amazon rainforest. Some of the most striking things to see on these tours include the Paricatuba Waterfall, Love Cascade and glimpses of the Pied tamarin, Brazil’s most endangered monkey. Another significant sight is the Meeting of the Waters , which is a natural phenomenon where the two rivers of Negro and Solimões run side by side for more than three miles without mixing.

Besides the rainforest and river, Manus also offers public parks, a botanical garden and a zoo. Several beaches are here as well such as Ponta Negra with a number of restaurants, bars and hotels.

3. Salvador


A historic Old City, beautiful beaches, lively culture and one of the world’s biggest Carnival celebrations all fashion Salvador into one of Brazil’s top tourist destinations. One of the oldest cities in the Americas, Salvador is Brazil’s third largest city and the capital of the Bahia state.

Formerly a major center of sugar and slave trade, Salvador today still bears traces of its history in Pelourinho or Old City, which features colonial architecture, stunning churches and plazas where important events once occurred. Also found in the old quarter are many restaurants, bars, art galleries and handicraft shops. Contrastively, Salvador’s New City district is where all the modern day developments of shopping megaplexes, entertainment venues, golf courses and residential neighborhoods are located.

Porto da Barra Beach

Situated on the coast of the Bay of All Saints, Salvador offers fantastic beaches that are ideal for sunbathing, swimming and surfing. Some of the most popular include Porto de Barra, Flamengo and Stella Maris.

One of Salvador’s main crowd-pullers is its annual Carnival celebration . Acclaimed as one of the largest in the world, this extravagant event involves music, dancing, parades, costumes and street parties.

2. Foz do Iguacu

Foz do Iguassu

One of the most awe-inspiring natural wonders in the world, Iguazu Falls straddles the Argentine-Brazilian border. It is often compared to Niagara Falls and Victoria Falls, such is its staggering size and scale. Surrounded by dense rainforest, its endless series of cascades stretch for almost three kilometers, making it the largest waterfall system in the world.

Every second, incalculable gallons of water from the Iguazu River course over the Parana Plateau, plunging onto the rocks and pools below. While 80 percent of the falls are in Argentina , it is the Brazilian side that offers the most spectacular views, with Devil’s Throat canyon being the highlight.

Iguazu Falls

Besides gazing in awe at Iguazu Falls and taking in the deafening roar, visitors can take a boat ride beneath the falls or go hiking in the steamy rainforest that surrounds them. The gateway to the falls on the Brazilian side is Foz do Iguaçu, a big and reasonably safe city by Brazilian standards.

1. Rio de Janeiro

Christ the Redeemer

There is no destination on earth more animated and exciting than Rio de Janeiro. Located in southeastern Brazil, Rio de Janeiro is the most visited city of South America due to its famous mountains, beaches and Carnival festival.

Rio de Janeiro is situated on one of the world’s largest harbors surrounded by natural attractions that include the Sugarloaf and Corcovado mountains and famous beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema . Within this sprawling metropolis is Tijuca National Park , one of the world’s largest urban forests, teeming in native flora and fauna.

Ipanema Beach

The city’s iconic landmark is the enormous Christ the Redeemer statue sitting atop Corcovado mountain. Other important landmarks include colonial fortresses, former presidential palaces and Maracanã Stadium, one of the world’s largest football stadiums.

See also: Where to Stay in Rio de Janeiro

Sadly, most people also know Rio for its crime and favelas. The favelas are areas of poor-quality housing, slums usually located on the city’s many mountain slopes, juxtaposed with middle-class neighborhoods.

Rio de Janerio is home to one of the world’s largest Carnival celebrations , renowned for its vibrant parades, costumes, dancing, music, fireworks and street parties. Outside of the festival, the city buzzes nightly with an abundance of bars and dance clubs.

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Reader interactions.

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October 11, 2019 at 3:37 am

I would also recommend Maceió. Beautiful beaches, great nightlife and safer than the big cities. But, you can’t go to Brasil for the 1st time and not go to Rio (my hometown for 16 years/Copacabana). As one person said above, do your homework before you go and you should be safe. Don’t dress like a gringo… just saying!?

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February 16, 2019 at 3:44 pm

I highly recommend you guys to go to Porto de Galinhas (translates to…Hen’s Harbour, yeah), i’ve been there a couple of times and it’s one of the most beautiful places i’ve ever been, with amazing beaches, some handicraft fairs (that show a lot of brazilian’s northeastern culture) and splendid sights and hotels.

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March 30, 2018 at 8:04 am

I recommend “Porto de Galinhas-Pernambuco” and “Maragogi-Alagoas”. Paradise! They are safe places. Really Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo are very dangerous.

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June 29, 2017 at 7:44 pm

@Laura Morgenstern, I have to say that there are some places that are dangerous. But people generalize about it. Like most countries, there ares some dangerous neighborhoods but it is not the entire country. There are very safe cities, and I’m sure that if you speak with local people they will tell you where you have to avoid going to. There are amazing places in Brazil that some people don’t know about such as Gramado, Aguas de Lindóia, Brotas – radical sports in the water, Balneário camboriu

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June 11, 2017 at 1:23 pm

Isla do Mel……amazing! Curitiba, fantastic city.

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January 10, 2017 at 3:52 pm

And about Espirito Santo… Beaches. Guarapari and Vila Velha and beautiful mountains like Domingos Martins with a wonderful wine by the fireplace

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December 22, 2016 at 12:19 am

I went to Brazil for three weeks this summer and there weren’t any cases that made me feel uncomfortable or where I felt unsafe. I was in both Sao Paulo and Rio de Janiero during my trip. I wouldn’t recommend going to certain parts of both cities because there are gangs but if you do your research you’ll be able to figure out where not to go and what is safe.

My trip was absolutely amazing and I would recommend going if you ever get the opportunity.

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October 20, 2016 at 9:33 am

Gramado is the best city

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June 30, 2016 at 12:46 pm

I think Brazil is a beautiful place, but ‘s very dangerous. It’s true?

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November 23, 2015 at 11:07 am

Thank you for recommending all these interesting places. My husband I are thinking to go to Brazil next year but I do not wish to go to big cities – may go to Rio for a few days only and then travel to other small places. Which ones would you recommend – We are not beach people. Like the culture and ”naturaleza” from these places people are recommending? which is the best time to go?

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October 13, 2015 at 8:21 pm

Forget about the big cities in Brazil… The best and safest tourism here is in small and fantastic places. Keep noted: 1. Bonito – Is, by far, the most amazing place in Brazil!!! There you can swim in small rivers with several fishes and enjoy the real nature 2. Fernando de Noronha – Is an isolated island in the north east of Brazil. Destination of the Hollywood movie stars. You can swim with dolphins or sharks. Amazing beaches and is a very calm place. 3. Iguaçú falls (Foz de Iguaçú) – Much bigger than niagara falls and really beautiful. You can feel the power of nature there. 4. Chapada dos Veadeiros – A lot of water falls and a mistic place. Great site to meditate and to be in touch with yourself.

All these places are safe and really cheap if you have Dollars or Euros. Forget the big cities…

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June 12, 2015 at 12:07 am

I do not speak English , I am using a translator , sorry . Anyway , I wanted to leave my opinion ‘m from São Paulo SP Brazil ( love this place <3) , and put the ranking as: 1 – Maranhão – National Park Maranhenses 2 – Amazonas – Manaus, located in the center of the largest tropical forest in the world 3 – Bahia – Morro sp 4 – Bahia – Chapada Diamantina National Park 5 – Pernambuco – Porto de Galinhas 6 – Ceará -the beach of Canoa Quebrada 7 – Rio de Janeiro – Paraty 8 – Minas Gerais – Sao Tome das letras 9 – São Paulo – SP ( Paulista Avenue, Ibirapuera Park) 10 – Rio de Janeiro – RJ

Sao Paulo has little beauty , but it's where you find the best hotels, bars, parties and museums in Brazil.

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May 15, 2015 at 6:47 pm

I think that you should mention Mato Grosso do Sul ( Bonito the city) , crystal clear waters, a lot of different animals. It s amazing and perfect

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July 30, 2014 at 3:49 pm

Christ the Redeemer statue sitting atop Corcovado mountain is wonderful and unbelievable! I really want to visit that place 🙂 Great!

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July 24, 2014 at 10:16 am

I think you should put Graemado and Canela (two cities of Rio Grande do Sul) too! It doesn’t have beaches, but it’s like a cold paradis. It’s VERY beautiful and there are a lot of cultural attractions. I would recommend the dates around Easter and Christmas (specially the last one), because there’s really maaaany beautiful things. During the winter it’s very cold and good to stay there! It’s awesome

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May 27, 2014 at 10:58 am

Brazil is Amazing and Fascinating!! I hope I visit it soon and the first place ide love to visit is amazingly the Rio De Jeneiro!! ..its the most wonderful place I’ve heard of and apart from this comes the iguazu Falls..SPLENDID..its Paradise On Earth!..

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May 23, 2014 at 6:18 pm

You should visit the south too, specially Rio Grande do Sul, where many cities still conserve the german and italian culture! June and july is the best time of the year

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May 14, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Wow, I never knew there were so many beautiful cities in Brazil! I visited Floripa and it IS beautiful!

Please add it between 2 and 6!!

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May 8, 2014 at 11:30 am

I agree with you! There are a lot of beautiful cities in Brazil to visit!! Not just São Paulo e Rio de Janeiro! Floripa is very beautiful too

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April 14, 2014 at 7:44 am

Thanks for mentioned Sao Paulo!

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January 7, 2014 at 2:01 pm

I also would put Floripa between 3 and 6 for sure!

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December 26, 2013 at 10:15 pm

I want to understand how Florianopolis isn’t in that list…

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December 10, 2013 at 5:55 pm

I appreciate your information about the top ten in Brasil.. But I would like to inform another city: Ouro Preto, very interesting,, cultural and beautiful , the first capital of the important Minas Gerais state. Rich Baroque, churchs from the XVII and XVIII, is a place very important to the cultural tourism. All the gold from Brasil to Europe, in these centuries came from OURO PRETO ( black gold) regions , the name of this city, in the heart of Brazil, between mountains, near the new Capital of Minas Gerais State: Belo Horizonte.

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The 10 most incredible places to visit in Brazil

Catherine Balston

Sep 26, 2023 • 9 min read

A man throwing confetti in the air at a street party in Olinda, Brazil

The scale of Brazil can be overwhelming but we're here to help with picking the best parts of it to visit © MesquitaFMS / Getty Images

One of the world’s most dazzling destinations, Brazil  is packed with steamy rainforests, tropical savannas, wetlands and exciting cities. 

The ecosystems found in this giant of  South America  are home to the largest collection of plant and animal species found anywhere in the world. But even if exploring the natural world is not top of your Brazil to-do list, plenty of life can be found in the country’s musical metropolises, too. When it comes to relaxing, Brazil has sand to spare: 2095 beaches, to be precise, dotting its 7242km (4500-mile) Atlantic coastline.

With such a massive footprint and a wide variety of things to do, planning an itinerary here can feel overwhelming. Let us help get you started with our 11 favorite places to visit in Brazil.

1. Ouro Preto and the colonial towns of Minas Gerais 

Ouro Preto (meaning “black gold”) in Minas Gerais was at the heart of Brazil’s 18th-century gold rush. Nearly two dozen churches, lavishly ornamented with gold filigree, still ring out their bells across the hillsides of this rural town, which at its height was home to 110,000 residents – the majority of whom were enslaved people. 

One of Ouro Preto’s most famous residents was the sculptor Aleijadinho, who studied European baroque traditions and developed his own unique style. His sculptures and reliefs – some of which he carved after losing his fingers to a disease – adorn churches across the region, including in Tiradentes, Congonhas and São João del Rei. The historical Royal Road links up most of these towns and makes for an adventurous road trip . An essential detour for art lovers is nearby  Inhotim , the world’s largest open-air contemporary art museum.

A colonial-era church in Paraty, Brazil, seen from the water, with palm trees and green mountains beyond

2. Paraty and the Saco de Mamanguá 

The other terminus of the Royal Road, seaside  Paraty  was where the precious metals extracted from Minas Gerais were shipped out in the early days of Brazil’s gold rush. The town lost some of this export trade to Rio de Janeiro in the early 1700s, yet its architecture was impeccably preserved – and it’s all the more impressive for being sandwiched between steep, jungle-covered mountains and the warm, clear waters of the ocean. 

A forgotten gem for centuries, Paraty has in recent decades attracted writers and artists from all over the world. The city plays host to a number of prestigious events, including the literary festival FLIP , a jazz festival and a pinga festival (an excuse to drink lots of pinga , slang for cachaça, the Brazilian cane spirit that’s produced locally).

Getting out on the water to explore some of Paraty’s 65 islands and 300 beaches is a must. Motor boats and schooners can be rented, but for a close-up connection with nature join a kayak tour in the Saco de Mamanguá – a “tropical fjord” – and paddle to deserted beaches, mangroves, waterfalls and Caiçara fishing communities.

3. Amazon rainforest

The Amazon  has a mysterious pull that has fascinated explorers for centuries. One of the wildest places on the planet, the region is almost too big to comprehend, spanning about 42% of Brazil and swaths of eight neighboring countries. Each region offers something different in terms of ecology, tourism and local culture; doing your research before visiting is essential as it’s neither an inexpensive nor easy-to-reach destination. 

The unending expanse of green can be gazed at for hours as you fly overhead into Manaus , the region’s largest city and a good jumping-off point for many of the lodges and Amazon jungle experiences . You can try canoeing through flooded forests at Anavilhanas National Park , heading farther afield to the recently formed Xixuaú Reserve or spotting river dolphins in the Mamirauá Reserve. A few hundred miles east, Santarém is another access point for seeing the majestic trees deep in the Tapajós Forest or beach hopping along the banks of the Arapiuns River, a tributary of the Tapajós River near Alter do Chão .

4. Brasília

The city of the future that’s forever stuck in the past, Brasília  is a fabulous paradox. The federal capital officially opened for business in 1960, becoming the ultimate symbol of modernity for an urbanizing nation and a long-hoped-for kick start for the economic development of the country’s interior. 

Built in the middle of the hot, dry landscape of Brazil’s Center-West, Brasília is an open-air monument to the people who shaped and built it, including urban planner Lúcio Costa and architect Oscar Niemeyer. Thousands of tons of concrete and steel were poured into a series of Modernist architectural gems that are worth spending a day or two to explore – though not on foot, as the sprawling city was designed for cars not pedestrians.

Niemeyer’s much-loved curves can be spotted everywhere, most notably in the metropolitan cathedral , with its white columns rising up to the heavens in a hyperboloid structure studded with stained glass. 

A woman in a swimsuit in a natural pool in Jalapão State Park, Brazil

5. Jalapão 

In a country teeming with rainforests, pristine beaches and other natural wonders, the tropical savanna hinterlands of the Cerrado certainly hold their own. While the Cerrado has borne the brunt of Brazil’s agribusiness boom in recent decades, pockets of conservation do exist, including the relatively unexplored Jalapão State Park – 34,000 sq km (13,127 sq miles) of scrubland, grasslands, forest, caves and unusual rock formations.

The best time to visit is the dry season (from May to September) when, despite the dry landscape, water is the main attraction. Splash in the glassy pools of waterfalls or kayak down rapids – you can also take a dip in the so-called fervedouros (boiling pots), natural springs where the bubbling water buoys swimmers. Sand dunes and chapadas (mountain formations) also make for some spectacular hiking. 

Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park  (400km/248 miles south) and Emas National Park (to the west) are two much larger conservation areas that are home to dozens of species of flora and fauna at risk of extinction. Lucky hikers might cross paths with giant anteaters, giant armadillos, maned wolves and rheas, South America’s largest bird.

6. Pantanal 

The largest wetland region in the world,  the Pantanal offers the best wildlife spotting in Brazil. South America’s largest mammal (tapir) and largest bird (rhea) call the Pantanal home, as do more than 230 species of fish and 650 species of bird – plus such apex predators as jaguars, caimans and anacondas.

Spanning an area more than half the size of France, the Pantanal can be explored in a number of different ways. The most accessible is by road, on the Estrada Transpantaneira, though small airplanes and motorboats open the doors to more remote zones and secluded, upscale lodges.

It’s easier to spot wildlife during the dry season, from May to September – but when the water levels rise from October onwards, the rivers flood their banks and inundate the surrounding plains, spurring on an abundance of flora and flocks of wading birds. The wet season also brings the arrival of river cruises: the sun deck of a 15-cabin boat cruise to the Serra do Amolar mountains near the border with Bolivia is an ideal vantage point from which to contemplate the grandeur of this region. 

7. Fernando de Noronha

An archipelago of islands some 200 miles off the northeast coast, Fernando de Noronha is high on many honeymoon wishlists. Of Noronha’s 21 islands, only the largest one is accessible to tourists – and even then, its boundaries lie safely within Brazil’s largest marine park . Dreamy beaches – including Baía do Sancho , Baía dos Porcos and Praia do Leão – all compete for the top slot on rankings of the best beaches in the country .

Silky-soft sands and clear blue waters would have holidaymakers flocking here if this place were on the mainland; happily, its remote location and a cap on visitor numbers keep the crowds to a welcome minimum. 

Just off the shoreline, Noronha is an underwater paradise that’s home to 230 fish species, 15 varieties of coral, five types of (harmless) shark and the greatest concentration of tropical marine birds in the Atlantic.

You can dive to spot corals and shipwrecks in the marine park or watch hundreds of dolphins doing water acrobatics at sunrise before snorkeling in shallow tide pools. Noronha offers Brazil’s natural beauty at its absolute best, and this place warrants going the extra mile.

Two backpackers looking at view of Sugarloaf, Rio de Janeiro

8. Rio de Janeiro 

The most visited city in Brazil, Rio de Janeiro didn’t earn its title of cidade maravilhosa (“marvelous city”) for nothing. In the eyes of Cariocas, it’s the most beautiful place on earth. Visitors would be hard-pressed to disagree.

Dense high-rises are stacked like sugar cubes between mountains cloaked in rainforest and studded with naked granite peaks jutting skywards. Visitors hit the famous beaches to lounge in the sun, but the locals go to get active – surfing, running, cycling or diving into the sand over a sweaty game of beach volleyball. People watching is a serious beach sport in its own right. 

Come evening, Rio’s own special blend of tropical rhythms draws the crowds out onto the city’s streets to meet friends at botecos (bars) or join impromptu street parties. You’ll also discover a wealth of culture and history – the city was the capital of the Kingdom of Portugal in the 19th century, and, until 1960, the capital of Brazil. 

9. Ribeira Valley and the Atlantic Forest 

The Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Forest) is Brazil’s “other” tropical forest. Regrettably, it’s also one of the most endangered biomes in the world, with just 12.5% of it remaining in disparate fragments along Brazil’s southeast-facing coastline.

Teeming with life, the forest has a wider variety of flora and fauna per hectare than the Amazon, with half of its species not found anywhere else in the world. In short, it’s a hidden gem within easy reach of Brazil’s largest cities.

The Ribeira Valley – a 28,489 sq km (11,000 sq mile) river valley straddling the São Paulo – Paraná state border, is home to the largest continuous stretch of remaining Atlantic Forest. Here, visitors can explore some of the biggest caves in Brazil (at PETAR ), stay at traditional quilombos (communities that were formed by escaped enslaved Africans ), hike through the forest and raft down rivers.

Private nature reserves like the whopping 310 sq km (120 sq mile) Legado das Águas offer a range of ecotourism activities. An ambitious plan to connect Atlantic Forest conservation areas (including the Ribeira Valley) with one long trail – the Caminho da Mata Atlântica – has been gathering pace in the last few years, though no one has yet attempted to hike its full 4000km (2485 miles) length. 

A woman and a man eating traditional food in the municipal market of São Paulo

10. São Paulo

Last but by no means least is South America’s most populous city. São Paulo may not have beaches, vast swathes of forest or even clean rivers, but it has a kinetic charm all its own.

Poet Mário de Andrade called it “the hallucinated city,” which seems a fitting description for a megalopolis of 20 million residents. It’s a city whose soul is young and restless, a party-mad colossus with cutting-edge theaters, world-class chefs and a fascinating art scene, among countless other draws.

With layer upon layer of immigrant influences and centuries’ worth of boom-and-bust cycles, São Paulo attracts people from all over the world who thrive on its energy. Its delights are not served up on a plate – visitors have to seek them out. But once you get a taste, you'll be hooked.

This article was first published January 2022 and updated September 2023

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8 Must See Destinations in Brazil

By Briana Seftel

South America's largest country is teeming with stunning natural wonders, vibrant cities and everything in between. That also means planning a trip to Brazil can be a little daunting, so we're here to help with ideas.

Here are 8 places in brazil we think you should visit now.

View vacation packages to Brazil > (trips include flight, hotel & excursions)

Copacabana Beach

Rio de Janeiro 

Sun, surf and samba.

Ravishing Rio is a trip for all five senses. Surfers and sunbathers fuel up on acai bowls before hitting the famous beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema, while kids of the favelas toss around a soccer ball (Brazilians are fanatical about their futebol). Dance the night away at one of the city's many samba clubs, and if you really want to see the city come alive, go during Carnival in February.

Parrots, piranhas and poison dart frogs.

The Amazon brings to mind a colorful array of birds, deadly predators (hello, anaconda), a tangled expanse of emerald trees and one big river. Brazil is home to 60% of the Amazon, so if you're searching for Amazonian adventure ideas, this is the place to do it. Just don't forget insect repellent!

Iguazu Falls

The world's most stunning waterfalls..

Niagra Falls doesn't stand a chance against Iguazu Falls, which holds the title as the largest waterfall system in the world. Straddling the borders of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, Iguazu Falls is made up of 275 individual waterfalls, with the Devil's Throat being the largest of them all. Come for the awe-inspiring gushing water and stay for the incredible flora and fauna surrounding the falls.

A non-stop party in Brazil's largest city.

Your brain might tell you to skip smoggy, overcrowded Sao Paulo, but you'd be missing out on some of Brazil's best nightlife, cultural offerings and Brazilian foodie pleasures . Like New York City or Tokyo, Sao Paulo (or Sampa as its called) is a city that never sleeps. It's big and noisy, but for city people there's no other place quite like multicultural, riveting Sao Paulo.

Colonial charm without the cars!

Paraty (or Parati) might be Brazil's prettiest city. Awash in colonial cobbled charm, the city has a heavy Portuguese influence and was a major exporter of gold during the 1600s. Stroll the streets of the pedestrian-friendly historical center (blissfully car free) and take day trips to pristine beaches and lush rainforest just outside the city.

The Venice of Brazil.

With its many rivers, small islands and over 50 bridges, Recife is often called the Brazilian Venice. It's a buzzing, gritty city like Rio with a vibrant cultural scene and interesting historical center. Outside Recife, the beach of Porto de Galinhas has been repeatedly awarded the title of best beach in Brazil while the historic center of Olinda charms all who visit.

Eat your way through Brazil's tastiest city!

The capital of Bahia, Salvador is a city of many accomplishments. Its historic center is one of the oldest colonial cities in the Americas, capoeira was born here and the city's Carnival is the largest party on the planet. You can't visit Salvador with trying its food, which is heavily influenced by Africa and the Caribbean. One of the most famous dishes is moqueca, a seafood stew made with coconut milk.

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  • Add These Diverse Landscapes To Your List Of Top Places To Visit In Brazil

rio de janeiro

23 Mar 2023

There is no dearth of places to visit in Brazil owing to the presence of rainforests, magnificent beaches, and some of the beautiful Portuguese architecture. The place has a vibe of its own which gives you an energy the moment you step your feet on the land. There are many popular places to visit in Brazil and activities for a traveler to get involved in the place. The best part is it has activities for different sets of people, whether they are adventure lover or have much interest in the nightlife.

Top Places To Visit In Brazil

Brazil is already a famous destination among tourists which it owes to its vibrant culture, scenic beauty, and immense love for football. Here are a few of the places to visit in Brazil that should make to your itinerary.

1. Rio de Janeiro

 Rio de Janeiro is a standout

Image Source

Remarkable Rio de Janeiro is a standout amongst the most energizing urban communities you’ll ever visit. The famous Brazil point of interest is one of those spots that just gets under your skin and remains with you until the end of time. Rio is additionally not a city you do per say but instead a city you can dare to dream to encounter – to some degree – for a couple of days on end. Impressive Copacabana and Ipanema and their gentrified avenues are the centers of all traveler activity, and why not? Brilliant dining and touring will undoubtedly make them wander about town. It is one of the best places to visit in Brazil.

Suggested Read: Restaurants In Brazil: These 10 Brazilian Eateries That Lend Fine Dining A New Meaning

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Paraty and the shorelines south of Rio should be on your list of places to visit in Brazil while you plan the trip. Marvelous waters, flawless shorelines, and unspoiled islands offering a blend of unwinding, culture, and history across the board magnificently tropical bundle. Of all the Brazil tourist attractions, Paraty is especially intriguing and flaunts a really shocking frontier town, along with cobbled road and vivid façades, which go back to the mid-eighteenth century. Under 300 km south of Rio, Paraty offers a great ocean side venture and is home to a variety of relaxing and rural pousadas (guesthouse) where you can relax and revive.

Suggested Read: Street Food In Brazil: 10 Best Delicacies That’ll Please Your Palate Forever!

3. Iguazu Falls

most well known and strong cascades

South America’s most well known and strong cascades, Iguazu Falls sit comfortably as a fringe among Brazil and Argentina. One of the most beautiful places to visit in Brazil, it makes for an impressive 3-day side trek from Rio and an especially advantageous ‘Brazil visit endpoint’ that will make you wish to visit Argentina as well amid your outing to South America. Iguazu Falls are one of the biggest falls on the planet and a sight that never neglects to inspire. On a visit, incorporate a couple of hours at the astonishing bird stop nearby (on the Brazilian side) and you’ll experience each one of those common fortunes that make this such an extraordinary and precious nation. It is indeed one of the unique places to visit in Brazil and even the whole world.

Suggested Read: 10 Brazilian Rivers Which Every Traveler Should Explore While At This Roaring Cascade!

4. The Pantanal

the biggest wetland on the planet

With regards to natural life watching, Brazil’s Pantanal, the biggest wetland on the planet, has no opponents. One of the best places to visit in Brazil, the open fields and unlimited skylines influence wildlife spotting to appear like child play here, most particularly for bird watchers. In the Pantanal you can meet Goliath Otters, panthers, capybaras, crocodiles, toucans, monkeys, boa constrictors thus numerous more animals and, more often than not, that is simply on the very first moment!

Suggested Read: Iguazu National Park: A Heaven Which Lies On The Border Of Argentina, Brazil, & Paraguay

5. The Amazon Rainforest

another Brazil point of interest

For that embodiment Brazilian wilderness encounter, nonetheless, nothing beats the Amazon rainforest which is another Brazil point of interest. Visit amid the dry season and you can take long strolls in the core of this staggering wild, and in the event that you come amid the wet season rather, you can explore the relentless streams like an old-world adventurer, winding on kayaks looking for sloths and drenching up a standout amongst the most ethereal environments on our planet. On an outing to the Amazon, you’ll find out about the inborn restorative privileged insights these locale shrouds, about the extraordinary creatures that live and flourish here and bounty about the indigenous individuals which still call this place home. However, keep in mind it is not one of the best places to visit in Brazil in December.

6. Salvador de Bahia

most invigorating city in the nation

The northern Brazilian city of Salvador de Bahia thumps to an entire distinctive drum, one implanted with African tunes and Caribbean rhythms. The origination of Jubilee is still the most vivid, most mixed and most invigorating city in the nation, and a visit – even outside Festival time – is in every case fulfilling. One of the historical places to visit in December, Salvador is a completely blended sack of treats, with Portuguese provincial architecture, Caribbean atmosphere and culture. In addition to African roots, joining to make a stand-out air.

Suggested Read: Top 10 Brazil Beaches For A Funtastic Summer Vacation!

How to reach

how to reach brazil

Image Source The South American country is connected with airways. The Aeroporto Galeão is an important airport in the capital city of Rio de Janeiro and is well connected with the different parts of the world. In fact, it is the main junction that is used to enter the country. Apart from that, Aeroporto Guarulhos in Sao Paulo is also an important airport serving the country. It can be easily accessed on road from the nearby South American countries also.

Further Read: 46 Places To Visit In December In The World

Brazil is one of the most delightful places to visit in the world and has a diverse landscape to make your visit memorable. If somehow you may have missed to include the country in your bucket list, then you should not waste your time to put it there. The country has been mesmerizing the travelers over the years and is sure to do the same in the future also.

Disclaimer: TravelTriangle claims no credit for images featured on our blog site unless otherwise noted. All visual content is copyrighted to its respectful owners. We try to link back to original sources whenever possible. If you own the rights to any of the images, and do not wish them to appear on TravelTriangle, please contact us and they will be promptly removed. We believe in providing proper attribution to the original author, artist or photographer.

Please Note: Any information published by TravelTriangle in any form of content is not intended to be a substitute for any kind of medical advice, and one must not take any action before consulting a professional medical expert of their own choice.

Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In Brazil

What is Brazil famous for?

Brazil is famous for a number of things and football remains on the top of the list. Known for producing some of the greatest football players in history such as Pele, Ronaldo, and Ronaldinho, Brail is also called the country of football. The Christ the Redeemer landmark and the annual Brazillian carnival has also a worldwide popularity.

What is the best time to visit Brazil?

September and October is the best time to visit Brazil and has the most pleasant weather. Since its the shoulder-season, you will see very few crows and even get huge discounts on hotels.

Where are the best places to visit in Brazil?

Apart from the popular places listed above, here are a few more amazing places that you can visit in Brazil: 1. Brasília’s Modernist Architecture 2. Salvador’s Pelourinho 3. Ouro Preto 4. Pernambuco Beaches 5. Art Museums of Sao Paulo

Which is the most romantic places in Brazil?

Here are some of the romantic places in Brazil which is perfect for a romantic day out: 1. The Amazon Rainforest 2. Fernando de Noronha 3. Lençóis Maranhenses 4. Morro de Sao Paulo 5. Florianopolis

Is Brazil safe to visit?

Tourists visiting Brazil are extremely safe and rarely encounter any petty crime which is limited only to pickpocketing and mugging.

What is there to do in Brazil?

Some of the most amazing things to do in Brazil on a fun vacation are: 1. Soak in the breathtaking beauty of Porto de Galinhas 2. Explore the wild and exotic Amazon rainforests 3. Experience the visual extravaganza of the Rio Carnival 4. Watch some exotic birds at Parque das Aves

How many days is enough for Brazil?

Considering the size of the country and the number of interesting things and places that can be explored, at least 2 to 3 weeks would be required to marvel at the wonders of this enchanting country.

Is Brazil expensive place to visit?

Brazil is not very expensive and an average day in Brazil could cost you anywhere between Rs. 3,500 to Rs.20,000 inclusive of travel, food, and accommodation.

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Places to Visit in Brazil

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Brazil Places to Visit

Here are some of the best places to visit in brazil:, rio de janeiro.

1574065437 rio de

Nestled between the mountains and the sea, the very location of Rio de Janeiro makes it spectacular so much so that it has been acclaimed as the world heritage site for being the “the staggeringly beautiful location for one of the world's biggest cities" by UNESCO. However, the accolades of UNESCO weren’t solely for the natural setting of the city but also for the planned green space, urban cultural landscape and the right blend of architecture, all of which have contributed very well in the growth of the city.     

Rio de Janeiro is also the second major city of Brazil has also served as the capital of Brazil from 1763 to 1960. Founded by the colonists from Portugal in the mid 1500s, the city used to be the port for the shipment of gold from its inland mining areas. 

All through the history, Rio always seemed very aware of its physical assets -   long crescent beaches, soaring mountains behind it and the towering Sugar Loaf above the harbor. All these are today the prime tourist attractions of the city which have amplified the landscape with distinguished buildings from the different era of the history as well as the green parks and spaces that add to the city’s landscape.    

1619197716 shutterstock 1243868206

Even though the city is not too large in size, it is considered to be one of the most important industrial and commercial centers of the country. On the basis of what the Ministry of Tourism, Brazil had to say, Fortaleza is found to be the “second-most desired tourist destination in Brazil.” Some of the famous beaches of the city include the bech of Futuro and the Iracema. Since beaches are commonly used here, the majority of the tourists also indulge in watersports. Fortaleza consists of Brazil’s largest oceanariums known as Acquario Cear?. Found to be nestled away on the Praia de Iracema coastline in Fortaleza, the oceanarium has been recorded to have attracted over 12 million visitors annually. You can check out the Beach Park - a theme park to satisfy all your adventure fantasies. There are many other exciting experiences that you can indulge in including checking out the marvellous night-life and the beach-front restaurants are worthy of your time. Another one of Brazil’s gems that has a typical tropical climate. Some of the best times to visit this city are during summers, which would be between February and April.

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Located in the northeast corner of South America, Recife was founded in 1537 thereby qualifying as one of the oldest cities in the world. It is the capital city of Pernambuco and is primarily known for housing the largest scale of production for sugar canes. The city is home to many beautiful rivers, beaches and tiny islands. The name Recife itself can be accredited to the fact that the city’s shoreline is filled with magnificent-looking stone reefs. Due to the nature of the city, the place is also fondly referred to as the “Brazillian Venice.” Among the places to visit in Brazil, Recife should top your list. Why? The spirit of Recife is always about being up and about and the folks herein indulge in many different celebrations all throughout the year. You should surely check out the New Year celebrations starting at the Praia de Boa Viagem beach located in Old Recife. Recife consists of numerous local markets including the Mercado de S?o Jos? are worth a visit or two. Featuring an old, iron construction - these markets give you a vintage feeling. You can also visit the Fort Cinco Pontes, also known as the ‘Fore of Five Points.’ The weather is quite friendly all year round. Most days are tropical but the winter can go down to 1 degree. We recommend visiting Recife between March and June to enjoy the tropical weather.

Adventurous Trip to Jericoacoara in Brazil

Capital city of Amazonas, Manaus is home to Negro and Solim?es rivers and is qualified as the second oldest city in Brazil, as it was discovered in 1669. Initially, owing to its size, Manaus was actually considered to be a fort. It had a different name too. Back in those days, it was called Fort of S?o Jos? do Rio Negro. Among the tourist places in Brazil, many fondly refer to Manaus as ‘The City of the Margins of the Black River.’ Manaus acts as the perfect destination to lay low for a bit before you go exploring the incredible flora and fauna. It’d be interesting to take a boat ride through the black waters of the Negro River. If you’re around the region, you will surely be informed of the ‘Meeting of the Waters’ point wherein the black waters of Negro meet the brown waters of Solimoes River. Manaus is known for the happening nightlife it offers to its visitors. Imagine partying hard at the beachfront with some of the most interesting travelers from around the world - that’s just the kind of vibe that Manaus holds. Compared to most other cities in Brazil, Manaus has a humid climate. The best times to visit Manaus would be between December and March because that’s when most celebrations take place, as is the case with most Brazil places to visit. 

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Brasilia - named inspired by Brazil itself serves as the main seat of the government. Since it is home to the federal government, it is understood to be a federal capital of Brazil. This well-planned city is also home to some of the most important buildings in Brazil including the Banking sector and the Embassy sector. The city is filled with parks and beaches all around. Although modern by heart, they haven’t commercialised all aspects of the city but have made sure everything is kept intact. The city is filled with modern structures all over and thus, was declared to be a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. The city’s planning was considered to be quite advanced and urban. Another one of the architect’s paradise, many even refer to Brasilia as the “City of Design.” Being the federal capital doesn’t stop Brasilia from being just as happening as any other party location. There are festivals taking place all throughout the year. The festivals are often accompanied with different parades and unique types of celebrations. Brasilia itself features a young, vibrant art’s scene. Some of the world-famous artists have hailed from Brasilia including Bruno Giorgi, Alfredo Volpi, Burle Marx and Marianne Peretti to name a few. Brasilia is home to tropical, savanna-type climate. There are a few months during the year, wherein it does get mild however it is best to experience this city during its winter months. The best time to visit Brasilia is between December and March.

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The name ‘Salvador,’ is an abbreviation of a longer version, “S?o Salvador da Bahia de Todos os Santos.” This literally stands for ‘Holy Savior of the Bay of All Saints.’ Being the capital city of Bahia, the city is home to one of the oldest colonial settlements in the world, let alone Brazil places to visit. Salvador’s Porto da Barra Beach awaits you. Named as one of the best beaches in the world, the region is a party hub for anyone looking for adventure. The beaches are ideal for watersports including swimming, sailing and several other underwater activities. Stellar examples of rich Portuguese colonial architecture can be found in Salvador - a sight that you cannot absolutely miss. In fact, the whole Pelourinho area located in the upper town region of Salvador is classified as a ‘World Heritage Site’ by UNESCO. You will find yourself indulging in the tasteful cuisines that the city has to offer. The city is also known for its art - in several forms including music and dancing - making it an interesting choice when it comes to places to visit in Brazil. The weather, unlike many other cities in Brazil, is quite pleasant. The temperatures here are relatively consistent with most months being hot. It is only between April and June that it rains. The best times to visit Salvador would be between December and March, as is the case with most other Brazil places to visit.

Alter do Chao

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Alter do Cha? stands out as one of the most important administrative districts. Many even refer to Alter do Cha? as the ‘Brazilian Caribbean,’ given its location, which is why it is an important place to include in your list of places to visit in Brazil. Alter do Cha?, considered as the main tourist spot in the state of Santar?m, is home to some of the most incredible-looking freshwater beaches. Known as the ‘Island of Love,’ this small slice of paradise is located a few kilometers away from the Alter do Cha? city centre. Bustling at the heart of the city is a vibrant arts community. The region, Arariba Cultura Indigena is what comes to mind when we talk about art. If you’re at the Island of Love, you might want to go rowing in the boat and check out the crystal clear water. When it comes to Alter do Cha?, art doesn’t just limit itself to canvases. Be it ceremonial costumes, necklaces or even home decor - there’s something unique that you are sure to find among the Brazil places to visit. Tourists from all around the world come visiting during the low-tide months, which is between August and December, especially because of how calming the waterforce can get. However,  the best months to visit Alter do Cha? are between December and April.

Belo Horizonte

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The words Belo Horizonte literally translates to “A Beautiful Horizon” in English. It should be on the top of your places to visit in Brazil list. History suggests that Belo Horizonte is among the first cities in Brazil that undertook the modern-style of planning. Greenery all over, there are plenty of parks all throughout the city that you can check out as well, including the Baleia State Park as well as the Serra do Rola-Moca State park. The city is a paradise for architecture lovers as it is home to some of the best works till date. Chief among the best works of architecture is the Pampulha Complex. The good-natured city is extremely serious about conserving its flora and fauna and thus, you will find multiple environmental education projects all throughout. Some of the most common activities that you can indulge in while you’re here is visit the Bela Horizonte Zoo. The Zoo, which comes under the protection of the Ministry of Conservation Brazil, is constructed over a massive 1.4 million square meters. Belo Horizonte has mild weather all throughout the year, there are no extremes on this one. The city is pleasant all throughout the year but we recommend visiting during summers as the greenery just pops up the whole atmosphere.

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S?o Paulo is the most populated city of Brazil. The city is recognised as the capital of the surrounding state of S?o Paulo. Some of the wealthiest people are inhabitants of this city. There are numerous photo-worthy spots around the city as well, which makes it worth it in the places to visit in Brazil. For example there is the narrow alleyway of Vila Madalena. While you’re at it, do check out the luscious greenery of Ibirapuera Park. Another location that is straight out of a postcard is the Municipal Theatre - which is primarily based on the structural design of the Paris Opera House. This theatre is known to host musical and dance performances by world-famous artists. Be sure to check out one of the shows, if you’re passing through. There are a lot of activities that one can take part in while in S?o Paulo. Chief among them would perhaps be visiting the Avenida Paulista, the main financial and cultural centre of the city. The best of these restaurants and contemporary centers can be found in S?o Paulo’s Avenida Paulista region. The most popular museum of Brazil known as MASP is also located in this region. The temperatures here are relatively consistent with most months being hot. The weather is quite friendly all year round, with most days being tropical however, we recommend visiting between March and June.

Other Attractions

The pantanal.

The Pantanal

The Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon Rainforest

Sao Paulo Museum Of Art

Sao Paulo Museum Of Art

Chapada Dos Veadeiros National Park

Chapada Dos Veadeiros National Park

Lencois National Park

Lencois National Park

Arraial Do Cabo

Arraial Do Cabo



Mount Roraima

Mount Roraima

Chapada Diamantina National Park

Chapada Diamantina National Park

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18 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Brazil

Written by Barbara Radcliffe Rogers Updated May 26, 2022

The largest country in South America, Brazil occupies almost half the continent. Nearly all of it is in the Southern Hemisphere, and much of it is tropical, with vast stretches of rainforest filled with exotic plants and wildlife.

Brazil's 7,400-kilometer Atlantic coast is lined with golden-sand beaches , and its interior is filled with mineral resources. Gold from Brazil's mines still lines the churches of Portugal, the colonial power that ruled Brazil until 1822. This strong Portuguese influence is evident in Brazil's colonial architecture , in decorative arts such as the glazed tiles in its churches and convents, and in the language.

For tourists, Brazil is both a tropical paradise and an exciting cultural destination with attractions for all tastes, from idyllic beach holidays and jungle explorations to world-class art museums and the pulsing rhythms of Rio's Carnival.

To discover the best places to visit and things to do, use this handy list of the top tourist attractions in Brazil.

1. Cristo Redentor and Corcovado, Rio de Janeiro

2. sugar loaf, rio de janeiro, 3. iguaçu falls, 4. copacabana, rio de janeiro, 5. carnaval, rio de janeiro, 7. amazon rainforests, 8. brasília's modernist architecture, 9. salvador's pelourinho, 10. ouro preto, 11. museu do amanhã (museum of tomorrow), 12. ibirapuera park, são paulo, 13. museu oscar niemeyer, curitiba, 14. botanical garden of curitiba, 15. porto de galinhas & pernambuco beaches, 16. art museums of sao paulo, 17. belo horizonte, 18. escadaria selarón.

Cristo Redentor, Rio de Janeiro

With arms outstretched 28 meters, as if to encompass all of humanity, the colossal Art Deco statue of Christ, called Cristo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer), gazes out over Rio de Janeiro and the bay from the summit of Corcovado.

The 709-meter height on which it stands is part of the Tijuca National Park , and a rack railway climbs 3.5 kilometers to its top, where a broad plaza surrounds the statue. Completed in 1931, the 30-meter statue was the work of Polish-French sculptor Paul Landowski and Brazilian engineer Heitor da Silva Costa, and is constructed of reinforced concrete and soapstone.

The eight-meter base encloses a chapel that is popular for weddings. Although this is one of Brazil's most readily recognized icons, it is often mistakenly called The Christ of the Andes, confused with the older statue marking the boundary between Argentina and Chile.

A mid-point stop on the railway leads to trails through the Tijuca National Park, a huge forest that protects springs, waterfalls, and a wide variety of tropical birds, butterflies, and plants. Several more viewpoints open out within the park.

  • Read More: Top Attractions & Things to Do in Rio de Janeiro

Sugar Loaf, Rio de Janeiro

The easily recognized emblem of Rio de Janeiro, the rounded rock peak of Sugar Loaf juts out of a tree-covered promontory, rising 394 meters above the beaches and city. Its summit is one of the first places to visit for tourists, for views of Rio and the harbor, and for the thrill of riding suspended in a cable car between Sugar Loaf and the Morro da Urca , a lower peak from which a second cableway connects to the city.

Rio's first settlement began below these peaks, near the long Praia da Urca beach, and you can tour one of the three early forts there, the star-shaped Fort São João .

Iguaçu Falls

At the point where Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina meet, the Iguaçu river drops spectacularly in a semicircle of 247 waterfalls that thunder down into the gorge below. Just above the falls, the river is constricted to one-fourth of its usual width, making the force of the water even stronger.

Some of the falls are more than 100 meters high and they cover such a broad area that you'll never see all of them at once, but you do get the broadest panorama from the Brazilian side. Catwalks and a tower give you different perspectives, and one bridge reaches all the way to one of the largest, known as the Garganta do Diabo (Devil's Throat).

You can cross to the Argentinian side for closer views from catwalks that extend farther into the center of the falls. The two sides offer different perspectives and views, so most tourists plan to see both.

The falls are protected by the UNESCO-acclaimed Iguaçu National Park , where subtropical rainforests are home to more than 1,000 species of birds and mammals, including deer, otters, ocelots, and capybaras.

Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro

Downtown Rio's most fashionable and famous section follows Avenida Nossa Senhora de Copacabana and is bordered all along one side by four kilometers of white sand and breaking surf. The beach is separated from the buildings and traffic by a broad promenade paved in black and white mosaic in an undulating pattern reminiscent of streets in Lisbon, Portugal.

The beach isn't just for show. It's also a popular playground filled with sun-worshipers, swimmers, and kids building sand castles whenever the weather is fine. Stroll the streets here to find restaurants, smart shops, cafés, and beautiful old buildings from the days when Rio was Brazil's capital.

One of these, the famed Copacabana Palace , is protected as a national monument. Inside its lobby, you can easily imagine seeing the royalty and film idols who have stayed here.

Carnaval, Rio de Janeiro

Few shows match Rio's pre-Lenten Carnaval (Carnival) extravaganza for color, sound, action, and exuberance. Make no mistake, this is not just another rowdy street party, but a carefully staged showpiece, where spectators can watch the parades of competing samba dancers from a purpose-built stadium designed by none other than Brazil's best-known architect, Oscar Niemeyer.

Called the Sambódromo , this long series of grandstand boxes provides ringside seats to a 700-meter parade route where dancers and musicians from the competing samba schools strut their stuff in a dazzling explosion of brilliant costumes.

If mob scenes are less appealing to you than more spontaneous celebrations (that are equally riotous and colorful), you'll also find Carnivals in Salvador , Bahia, Recife, and other Brazilian cities.

Aerial view of Ipanema and Leblon Beach

Beyond the beaches of Copacabana, the glorious white sands merge into the just-as-famous beaches of Ipanema. The same wave design of Copacabana's wide promenade continues here, separating the sand from the line of hotels, restaurants, cafés, art galleries, and cinemas that make this a popular social zone year-round.

Farther along, beyond the Jardim de Alá Canal, which drains Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon, are the beaches of Leblon . With more locals and fewer tourists, these beaches are favorites for families. Sunday is especially busy, with an antiques market at Praça de Quentaland and the Feira de Artesanato de Ipanema , alive with music, art, handcrafts, and street food.

The waves at Ipanema and Leblon can be very strong and unpredictable, so be careful where you swim. Follow the locals and stay out of the water where you don't see others swimming. If surf is what you're looking for, head to the stretch between Copacabana and Ipanema, where the surfers hang out.

Amazon Rain Forest

About 20 kilometers southeast of Manaus, the dark Rio Negro waters meet the light muddy water of the Rio Solimões, flowing side by side for about six kilometers before mixing as the Amazon. Boat trips from Manaus take you to this point, called Encontro das Aguas , meeting of the waters.

Other boat trips take you into the heart of the rainforests and the network of rivers, channels, and lakes formed by the three rivers. In the Rio Negro, the Anavilhanas Islands form an archipelago with lakes, streams, and flooded forests that offer a full cross-section of the Amazonian ecosystem.

You can see monkeys, sloths, parrots, toucans, caimans, turtles, and other wildlife on a boat trip here. Also close to Manaus, the 688-hectare Janauari Ecological Park has a number of different ecosystems that you can explore by boat along its narrow waterways.

An entire lake here is covered with giant water-lilies found only in the Amazon region. While in Manaus, be sure to see its famous Teatro Amazonas , the Italian Renaissance-style opera house, designed to put Manaus on the map as South America's great center of culture.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Manaus

Brasília's Modernist Architecture

Brazil's new city of Brasília was carved out of the wilderness and completed in less than three years to replace Rio de Janeiro as the country's capital in 1960. The ambitious plan by Lúcio Costa and Oscar Niemeyer became a showpiece of city planning and avant-garde architecture, and it remains today as one of the world's few cities that represent a completed plan and a single architectural concept.

Without the normal mix of residential and business districts, the entire governmental section is composed of major architectural highlights, which are the city's main tourist attractions . Some of the most striking surround Praça dos Tràs Poderes : the presidential palace, supreme court, and the two sharply contrasting congress buildings, plus the Historical Museum of Brasília and the Panteão da Liberdade (Pantheon of Freedom), designed by Oscar Niemeyer.

That architect's best-known building in the city is the circular Catedral Metropolitana Nossa Senhora Aparecida , whose curved concrete columns rise to support a glass roof. Another of Niemeyer's landmark works is the Palácio dos Arcos , surrounded by beautiful gardens designed by Brazilian landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx, who worked with Niemeyer on several projects throughout Brazil.

The round Memorial dos Povos Indígenas (Museum of Indigenous People) is patterned after a traditional Yąnomamö round house. But many consider Niemeyer's finest work to be the Monumento JK , a memorial to President Juscelino Kubitschek, the founder of Brasilia. Brasilia has been named a UNESCO World Heritage city.

Salvador's Pelourinho

The Cidade Alta (Upper Town) of Brazil's former colonial capital has been named a UNESCO World Heritage site for its exceptional collection of 17th- and 18th-century colonial buildings, the finest such ensemble in South America.

Called the Pelourinho, this old quarter is where you'll find Salvador's most beautiful churches and monasteries, built at a time when Brazil was the source of Portugal's riches, and the plentiful gold was lavished on the colony's religious buildings.

The finest and most opulent of the city's churches is São Francisco , built in the early 1700s and filled with intricate carvings covered in gold. In the choir and cloister, you can see excellent examples of Portuguese tile panels, called azulejos.

This was the friary church, and next to it is the church of the Franciscan Third Order. It's impossible to miss the riotously carved façade covered in statues and intricate decoration. The interior is just as ornate, surpassing even the Portuguese Baroque in its opulent detail.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Attractions & Things to Do in Salvador

Ouro Preto

The wealth of Brazil's state of Minas Gerais in its glory days of the colonial period is easy to imagine from the interiors of the churches in its old capital, Ouro Preto. Entire walls are washed in gold that flowed – along with diamonds – from the mines surrounding the city in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Cascading down the sides of a steep valley and surrounded by mountains, Ouro Preto is a jewel of a colonial town, but its steep narrow streets and mountain setting – however captivating for tourists today – didn't meet the needs of a growing provincial capital. The government moved to the newly built capital of Belo Horizonte, leaving Ouro Preto in its time capsule.

The 17th-century Baroque and Rococo churches of São Francisco de Assis and Matriz de Nossa Senhora do Pilar are the best examples, but the entire town is so rich in colonial architecture that Ouro Preto has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The steep streets, so precipitous in places that they become stairways, are lined by gracious colonial mansions, and white churches crown its hills with Baroque bell towers.

Museum of Tomorrow in Rio de Janeiro

The futuristic architecture of the Museum of Tomorrow in Rio de Janeiro gives a clue about its contents. Thought-provoking exhibits invite visitors to think what the world might be like in the future, exploring scenarios of how our planet may change in the next half century.

Examining these times of fast-moving changes in society, technology, and the physical world, the museum prompts viewers to consider various paths into the future, and how each opens up based on the choices made every day as individuals and as a society.

This eye-catching science museum overlooking the waterfront was designed by Spanish architect and artist, Santiago Calatrava.

Address: Praça Mauá 1, Centro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Ibirapuera Park

The most visited park in South America, Ibirapuera Park is a vast green space designed by Brazilian landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx, with buildings designed by Oscar Niemeyer. The park is a showcase for modern architecture and a center for Brazilian culture.

Amid its monuments, gardens, playgrounds, trails, and lakes are museums and performance spaces that include Oscar Niemeyer's Auditório Ibirapuera , one of São Paulo's best concert venues. A Japanese Pavilion with sculptures, clothing, and traditional crafts is set in rock gardens with a fishpond.

The Museu da Aeronáutica e do Folclore , the Aeronautics and Folk Art Museum , features thousands of examples of folk arts and exhibits on traditional cultures from across Brazil. The lower floor is devoted to aeronautical equipment and model airplanes. A separate museum, the large Museu Afro-Brasil , features the culture and history of Afro-Brazilians and their contributions.

Address: Avenida Pedro Alvares Cabral, São Paulo

Oscar Niemeyer Museum

Paving the way for the unconventional building shapes created by later futurist architects such as Frank Gehry and Santiago Calatrava, Oscar Niemeyer left his native Brazil with a treasury of his most iconic buildings. One of these was built as the New Museum, completed in 2002 when Niemeyer was 95 years old, and renamed in tribute to him in 2003.

Balanced on a massive 60-foot pillar, the gallery is formed by a pair of joined arcs that resemble the shape of the human eye, hence its popular name, Museu do Olho – Eye Museum. Access to this raised structure is by a series of curved ramps. Inside the eye, the 2,000-square-foot gallery focuses on architecture, design, and the visual arts, and displays many of Niemeyer's works.

Niemeyer added a later rectangular gallery on the grounds to display changing exhibitions of works by contemporary Brazilian artists. In addition to visiting during its daytime open hours, try to see the Museu Oscar Niemeyer after dark, when it is spectacularly lighted.

Address: Rua Marechal Hermes 999, Curitiba

Botanical Garden of Curitiba

Reflecting the style of 17 th - and 18 th -century French palace gardens, Curitiba's Botanical Garden was opened in 1991. Formal beds are outlined by low sculpted hedges, in a geometric design inspired by the city's flag. The landscape is enlivened by fountains, waterfalls, and ponds, and in the park surrounding the gardens are forests of native trees, with walking paths.

The focal point of the botanical gardens is the main greenhouse, an Art Nouveau-style conservatory made of glass and white metal, reminiscent of the Crystal Palace in Victorian London. Its unusual shape includes three domes that merge into the rectangular base. Inside are plants native to the region.

Even the grass in the Garden of Native Plants of Curitiba is a native variety, and its flowers are especially attractive to butterflies and other pollinators. The Garden of the Senses (Jardim das Sensações) is a 200-yard path through a wisteria tunnel, where the more than 70 plant species are chosen for their fragrance or tactile appeal. Visitors are invited to try walking through it blindfolded to fully appreciate the garden by using their other senses.

Behind the main greenhouse is the Frans Krajcberg Cultural Space, displaying more than 100 large sculptures created from the remains of trees that were burned or illegally cut, calling public attention to the destruction of Brazil's native forests.

Pernambuco Beaches

The crystal waters, tall palm trees, and broad stretches of silver sand are only a few of the reasons why Porto de Galinhas is frequently cited as Brazil's best beach. For a country with more than 7,000 kilometers of Atlantic coast, much of it sandy beaches, that's saying a lot.

The town stretching along the beach is laid-back, colorful, and just the right blend of old-fashioned beach town fun and chic boutiques. Its hotels and resorts lie close to the land instead of soaring in high-rise blocks.

Jangadas, picturesque sailboats, will take you out to reef-top pools where brilliant tropical fish swim around your feet in ankle-deep water. You can also take a boat to a lagoon where tiny seahorses swim, and you can scuba dive to explore impressive coral reefs or shipwrecks, kayak in the lagoons and estuary, or buy a fanciful kite from a beach kiosk to fly in the steady breeze. Nearby Maracaipe is popular with surfers.

Porto de Galinhas is just one of the beautiful beaches on Pernambuco's 187-kilometer coast. Closer to Recife, 17th-century Olinda is a UNESCO World Heritage Site overlooking a popular beach. The main beaches in Recife itself are Praia da Boa Viagem, São José da Coroa Grande, and the Carne De Vaca.

Art Museums of Sao Paulo

São Paulo holds some of the best collections of fine arts in Latin America, and the buildings in which they are housed are architectural landmarks as well. The Museu de Arte, MASP, displays the continent's most comprehensive collection of western art, with representative works by artists from the Renaissance through modern masters.

There are 73 bronze sculptures by Degas and works by Renoir, Manet, Van Gogh, Matisse, Picasso, and Miró. From its beginning, the museum has concentrated on works of mid- to late-20th-century artists, and the building designed by architect Lina Bo Bardi is a Modernist landmark.

Oscar Niemeyer designed the Pavilhão da Bienal de Artes in Ibirapuera Park , home to the Museu de Arte Contemporânea. More than 8,000 works of art - one of Latin America's largest collections of 20th-century Western artists - includes Picasso, Chagall, Kandinsky, Miró, and Modigliani along with major Brazilian painters.

Set above Versailles-inspired formal gardens, Museu do Ipiranga houses paintings and decorative arts.

For another kind of art, don't miss Batman's Alley , an open-air gallery of street art by local and international artists. It is in the bohemian Vila Madalena neighborhood, where you'll also find art galleries showing the works of well-known and rising Brazilian artists and craftspeople.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Attractions & Things to Do in São Paulo

Praca da Liberdade, Belo Horizonte

The capital of the state of Minas Gerais gave the pre-eminent Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer his first commissions, and today, these early Niemeyer buildings draw tourists and fans of Modernist architecture to the city.

His first major work, which immediately set him apart from conventional architects, was the parabolic-curved São Francisco de Assis church, beside a lake in the Pampulha neighborhood. On the hillside above it, and connected by gardens designed by landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx, is Niemeyer's earlier casino building, now an art museum.

Overlooking the large Praça da Liberdade in the city center is the sinuous apartment building, Edificio Niemeyer , one of his most famous early works. The clean geometric lines of his later Palácio das Artes mark the edge of the Municipal Park, housing the Minas Gerais Craft Center featuring works of contemporary craftsmen.

The postmodern Rainha da Sucata – Queen of Scrap Iron – is another landmark building in Belo Horizonte, this one the work of Éolo Maia and Sylvio Podestá. It now houses the mineralogy museum.

Read More: Top Attractions & Things to Do in Belo Horizonte & Easy Day Trips

Escadaria Selarón, Rio de Janeiro

For 13 years, until his death in 2013, Chilean-born artist Jorge Selarón covered the long stairway that formed the street in front of his house with a mosaic of colorful ceramics and glass fragments. Broken tiles and pottery, mirrors, and colored glass were worked into exuberant designs that largely feature the colors of the Brazilian flag.

Selarón called this "my tribute to the Brazilian people," and as the work grew year by year, people began bringing him shards to incorporate. First these were from his Santa Tereza neighbors, then as the fame of the stairway spread, contributions came from all over the world. Now more than 60 countries are represented in the 250 colorful steps.

Address: Rua Manuel Carneiro (off Rua Joaquim Silva), Rio de Janeiro

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