Top Destinations for 2016: Brazil
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See the Olympics
One does not simply visit Brazil in 2016 without getting involved in some Olympic action! Tickets are still available for certain events, and although they can be pricey it’s worth it for such an amazing experience – after all, when will you have the chance to see the Olympics in Brazil again? And even if you can’t make it to the games this time around, don’t worry: you can still have a tour of the impressive Maracanã Olympic Stadium during your visit to Rio.
Push Yourself with some Extreme Sports
If you fancy yourself as a surfer, head to one of the 42 beaches on the island of Florianópolis. The most famous for their incredible waves are Praia Mole, Galheta, and Matadeiro. While you’re there, why not try surfing on sand too? Visit the dunes of Joaquina to try the exciting sport of sand-boarding.
Para-penting and hand-gliding are also popular sports for the braver tourist in Brazil. In Rio for example, you can hand-glide over the incredible views of Sugarloaf Mountain; much scarier than taking the cable car, but worth it! Further north, travellers that prefer kite-surfing, or paragliding from impressive cliffs, should head to Canoa Quebrada in Ceará.
And if this all sounds too much, you can always experience the most gentle of ‘extreme’ sports: snorkelling. Delve into crystal clear coral reefs, alongside tropical fish, in the heart of Brazil’s ecotourism industry, Bonito.
Visit Latin America’s Biggest Theme Park
Extreme sports not enough to get your blood pumping? Try a visit to Beto Carrero World in Penha; the largest theme park in Latin America, and considered the sixth best in the world. Beto Carrero is a complex divided into Seven district areas with different themes, and home to thrilling rides such as Chicote de Fogo, Torre de Terror, and Portal da Escuridão.Escape to a Paradisiacal Island, or a Bright White Beach
If warm crystalline waters, soft white sand, and relaxing in the bright sunshine sounds much more appealing to you, then have no fear; Brazil has plenty to offer! A hidden treasure of Rio de Janeiro, and (as some would argue) the most beautiful island in the country, is Ilha Grande. A similarly exotic getaway would be a trip to an island in the Fernando de Noronha archipelago, Pernambuco. These Atlantic islands are renowned for their undeveloped beaches and array of protected marine life, and were declared a World Heritage Site in 2001.
There are also plenty of opportunities to enjoy a beautiful beach escape on the mainland of Brazil, such as Natal’s stunning Pipa beach; famous for honeymoons and dolphins. (Plus, while in Natal, why not also take a visit to the Forte dos Reis Magos, the first milestone of the city?)Another white sand beach worth visiting is Maceió, where, as well as relaxing by the shore, you can also enjoy coral reefs and colonial houses. Last but not least, you can’t visit North-eastern Brazil without enjoying the long sandy stretches of Boa Viagem, in Recife. Eat and Drink like a Brazilian. Like any country, Brazil has its fair share of delicious cuisine, but there are a few dishes that you simply can’t leave without trying. First of all there’s Feijoada, a hearty traditional dish of meat, rice, and beans; the staples of any Brazilian meal. For the more carnivorous, there’s Churrasco, Brazil’s answer to a Barbecue. (Don’t forget to try the skewered chicken hearts, they sound gross but they are very tasty!) And of course, Pão de Queijo can’t be forgotten; the lovechild of cheesy deliciousness and fresh bread rolls, they are the perfect snack. Those with a sweet tooth must try Acaí na Tigela, a smoothie made from a blend of frozen acai berries; packed with anti-oxidants they make the perfect guilt-free ice cream treat. And if that’s not sweet enough, you have to try Brigadeiros, traditional chocolate truffles made with condensed milk; they are very rich and a true treat. Apart from enjoying a coconut water on the beach, what should you drink? Well, the typical Brazilian cocktail is a Caipirinha, a concoction of lime, sugar, and the sugar-cane based spirit Cachaça, but be careful – it’s strong!