5 Reasons to Travel to Brazil and Fall in Love with It
Hot on the heels of hosting the 2014 FIFA World Cup and currently gearing up for the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics Games, Brazil is quickly taking center stage in the international spotlight. While the country is known for football, sunny beaches, and gorgeous supermodels like Gisele and Adriana, there are still plenty of other things that will make you fall in love with this beautiful and eclectic country, but here are 5 reasons to travel to Brazil…
1. The People
With a population of approximately 200 million and officially being recognized as the most populous country in South America, Brazil is ethnically diverse and culturally rich. Brazilians are known extroverts who love to share their unique culture with others. They are naturally very friendly and generous people and it is not unusual to be invited to dine at their residence or even receive impromptu wedding invitations. Brazilians value building meaningful relationships with others and if you are given an opportunity to hang out with the locals, do it! (photo via Kelly Sato)
2. The Parties
Brazil is a country that likes to celebrate and party. The culture puts emphasis on outdoor activities and it seems like their boundless energy is fueled by fun, dance, and music. Alcohol laws are more lax and people are allowed to consume it in public places. Parties can be found in different places and spaces, but do keep in the mind that the largest party of the year is the Brazilian Carnival in Rio de Janeiro. The Carnival is a massive annual festival held four days before Ash Wednesday and marks four days of costumes, dance, and celebrations of epic proportions.
3. The Scenery
While the statue of Christ the Redeemer is widely regarded as one of the most popular sights to see in Brazil, many tend to overlook the natural beauty of the parks, jungles, and wildlife that is scattered throughout the country. The Iguazu Falls is situated within the Iguazu National Park and borders Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay. This UNESCO site boasts a set of scenic waterfalls and breathtaking views. For those who fancy flora and fauna, do visit the Pantanal – one of the world’s largest wetland regions in the world. It is here were you will see a plethora of plants and exotic animals native to South America. Finally, do not forget to visit the Amazon rainforest and its breathtaking views of nature virtually undisturbed. Made popular by Hollywood movies and restaurant franchises, the Amazon boasts a wide array of activities and tours available for any type of traveler. (Photo SF Brit)
4. The Food
Due to Brazil’s diversity, their cuisine is a hybrid of different cultures coupled with African and European influences. The types of food available are so expansive that there are regional cuisines. Rice and beans are staple foods in Brazil but do attempt to sample traditional street food and signature dishes. Popular street food include pastels, which are pastries filled with meat, cheese, or cod; acarajé, a type of fried snack stuffed with black-eyed peas, shrimp, etc.; and pão de queijo, a type of cheese bread made of cassava starch and Brazilian cheese. Also remember to visit juice bars to sample an array of exotic fruits blended into a tasty concoction! (Photo Rodrigo Gianesi)
5. The Culture
Brazil’s booming economy over the last few decades has led to a disproportionate distribution of wealth among its citizens. Like many developing countries, there is a large gap between the rich and the poor. To get a taste of what ‘real life’ is like for many Brazilians, book a tour and visit the favelas. Favelas are known as slums in urban areas such as Rio and visiting these places will give travelers a better insight of the pros and cons of Brazil. (Photo Dany 13)
Brazil is truly a country that is full of people to meet, places to see, and things to eat. Have anything else to add to our list? Let us know in the comments below!