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Explore Brazil

Taking up half of South America, Brazil is a huge and diverse country with hundreds of honeymoon options ranging from sophisticated big cities like Rio de Janeiro to the deep Amazon rainforest. From soccer to samba, Brazilians and their culture are passionate. It’s an emotion that takes hold of visitors from the moment they step off the plane. With more flights than ever, Brazil is easy to reach from North America but not at the expense of its intoxicating, far-away feel.

By: Joe Yogerst

Enter Slideshow
  • Brazil

    Brazil

    Iguazu is the world's second tallest waterfall. 

    Photo Credit: Mark Hickey/ Natural Habitat Adventures

  • Romance in Rio

    Romance in Rio

    The sultry rhythm and vibrant activities of the cosmopolitan Rio de Janeiro are seductive. And there are so many ways to make memories in the capital of Latin American romance. Smooch at sunset at the summit of Sugar Loaf. Get hot and sweaty on the golden sands of Copacabana Beach. Ride the cog train to the summit of Corcovado Peak and get your picture snapped beneath the city’s iconic Christ the Redeemer statue. At night continue the party at the beachfront Copacabana Palace. The hot spot has been the place to stay in romantic Rio since 1923—everyone from Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers to the Rolling Stones have stayed here. Curl up with caipirinhas beside the pool or in one of the overstuffed chairs inside the posh Piano Bar. Gourmet Italian cuisine is the forte of the hotel’s stylish Cipriani Restaurant (room rates start at $435 a night; copacabanapalace.com).

    Rio's famous Christ the Redeemer Statue. Photo Credit: Emratur, The Brazil Tourism Board

  • The Beach Scene

    The Beach Scene

    A hundred miles up the coast from Rio is the chic beach retreat of Buzios, a fishing village that was “discovered” by actress Brigitte Bardot in the 1960s. Since then jetsetters have been flocking to the rugged peninsula and its turquoise bays for the see-and-be-seen scene. Copious sea, sun and sand are complemented by luxury shopping and gourmet restaurants. Of course, watersports abound. There’s snorkeling, scuba diving, sailing, board surfing and even slipping into the tropical water au naturel at clothing-optional Praia Olho de Boi.
     
    Photo Credit: Breezes Buzios
  • The Beach Scene

    The Beach Scene

    New to the area is the all-inclusive Breezes Resort & Spa, set on a long, white-sand strand with big waves. The best rooms are the secluded bungalows with private balconies (room rates start at $242 a night; breezes.com).

    Photo Credit: Breezes Buzios

  • Back In Time

    Back In Time

    The capital of Portuguese America for more than 200 years, Salvador de Bahia preserves a pristine Colonial core spangled with cobblestone streets, Baroque churches and pastel-colored buildings. The entire city center is a UNESCO World Heritage area overlooking a wide, palmfringed bay. But beyond the architecture, people go there for the music. Salvador is the birthplace of samba, as well as recent mash-ups like samba-reggae that currently dominate the local club scene and Carnival. Sleep at the hip Zank hotel, which boasts beach access, a spa, an ocean-view library and local cuisine (room rates start at $221 a night; zankhotel.com.br).

    Did you know? The word "Brazil" comes from brazilwood, a tree that once grew plentifully along the Brazilian Coast.

    Photo Credit: Embratur, The Brazil Tourism Board

  • On the Wild Side

    On the Wild Side

    Of course the Amazon rainforest is spectacular, but animal lovers in the know flock to the vast Pantanal wetlands in southern Brazil for the best wildlife viewing. The reason is simple: more wideopen spaces make the animals easier to spot and photograph. There are plenty of creatures: giant river otters, caiman crocodiles, giant anteaters, hyacinth macaws, maned wolves and capybara (the world’s largest rodent). And the Pantanal is considered the best place on the planet to see jaguars in the wild. Several U.S. outfitters offer all-inclusive Pantanal tours including Natural Habitat.

    Photo Credit: Erick Rock/ Natural Habitat Adventures

  • Falling Water

    Falling Water

    The western hemisphere’s most spectacular cascade is Iguazu Falls, which tumbles into a 270-foot chasm on the border of Brazil and Argentina. Hike the rainforest national parks on either side of the gorge for jungle-framed views of the “big water” (that’s what Iguazu means in the native language). Or get closer than you ever expected on a motorized raft that takes you right into the spray zone at the bottom of the falls. Base your stay at the Hotel das Cataratas, where the 17 deluxe falls-view rooms boast Colonial decor, Brazilian folk art and panoramas of the waters (room rates start at $362 a night; hoteldacataratas.com).

    Photo Credit: Orient Express Hotels

  • Tropical Nights

    Tropical Nights

    The hillside Santa Teresa district of Rio offers sweeping views of the bustling city and Guanabara Bay. The neighborhood may have grown up around a convent, but it’s now home to artists' lofts, studios and a fantastic dining scene. Aprazível, set in a funky house and garden, offers traditional Brazilian dishes like cabrito (goat in red wine and yam puree), palmito fresco assado (roasted palm heart) or moquequinha de Gurijuba (freshwater fish in coconut milk) served indoors or at high-rise palafitas (treehouse) tables. After dinner head to the Lapa district for nightlife that runs the gamut from poetry readings and art shows to lively little samba clubs and cool music venues.

    The climb to Santa Teresa. Photo Credit: Embratur, The Brazil Tourism Board.

Explore Brazil

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