One of Planet Earth’s most fascinating places, Brazil is definitely South America’s giant and yet remains one of the least visited countries within the region. It has been continuously portrayed through the media as a dangerous country, known for its violence, drug lords, murder rate and highly perilous favelas. However, many of these stories fail to mention the other side of Brazil; its breath-taking white sand beaches, lush rainforest, dramatic landscapes and undeniably rich history.

Brazil contains almost one-third of the world’s remaining tropical rain forests and is the fifth largest country in the world. In short, it is beautiful, wild and mesmerizing. So what is so great about Brazil? Well let me explain…

The View from Corvocado
The View from Corvocado

The city of Rio de Janiero is the perfect mix of urban and beach. Days can easily be lost wandering through the city or spending time relaxing on the beach. But nothing is more spectacular than getting a bird’s eye view of Rio from Corcovado or Sugar Loaf Mountain. Corcovado, meaning hunchback in Portuguese, is a 710 metre granite peak known for its famous statue of Jesus, Cristo Redentor, that sits atop of its peak. Just nearby, Sugarloaf Mountain, often confused with Corcovado, offers traveler’s another perspective of the city with their Italian-made bubble-shaped cable cars that offer passengers a 360 degree view of Rio.

Ipanema Breach - amazing view
Ipanema Breach: just look at those mountains

After exploring the peaks of Rio, travelers can spend some time lounging around Ipanema Beach. “Ipanema” comes from the Tupi language and means “stinky lake”, from upaba (“lake”) and nem (“stinky”). But the actual location is far removed from its name. The beach isn’t as famous as Copacabana beach, but offers something that its famous counterpart lacks, an absolutely breathtakingly stunning view.

Fernando de Noronha
Fernando de Noronha © Ana Cotta

If cities are not your thing, than traveler’s can find a tropical paradise in northern Brazil. Fernando de Noronha is an archipelago of islands and islets that are located about a mile off the coast of Brazil. The islands are known for their pristine waters, rich marine life and spectacular tropical landscapes. These waters are extremely important for the breeding and feeding of tuna, shark, turtle and marine mammals, which means that it is a prime spot for avid scuba divers.

Those seeking out an adventure can visit Central Amazon, also known as the lungs of the planet. A highlight of this area is the Econtra da Aguas (translation: meeting of the waters) where the dark waters of the Rio Negro converge with the pale waters of the Amazon to create an interesting and distinct barrier of color. Travelers can also visit the Pantanal Wetlands, the world’s largest freshwater wetlands, home to lots of vegetation and wildlife, including the giant anteater, maned wolf and the adorable capybara.

The water and dunes of Lençóis Maranhenses National Park
The water and dunes of Lençóis Maranhenses National Park

Brazil is also home to numerous dazzling national parks. Lençóis Maranhenses National Park lies just outside the Amazon Basin and is home to huge white sand dunes that are dotted with rain-fed, fresh water lagoons. The rainy season causes a peculiar phenomenon: fresh water collects in the valleys between sand dunes, spotting the desert with blue and green lagoons that reach their fullest between July and September. The stark contrast between dry white sand and crystalline lagoons makes for an incredible temporary landscape. Itatiaia National Park is the first and also the oldest National Park of Brazil. It was inaugurated in 1937 and covers almost 30.000 hectares of the larger Environmental Protection Area of the Mantiqueira mountain range. The park is home a Brazil’s third highest mountain, Pico das Agulhas Negras, (translation: black Needles Peak) which stands at 2,878 meters. To finish, Serra da Capivara National Park houses numerous rock shelters that are decorated with cave paintings, some of which are more than 25,000 years old.

Last but not least, everyone should plan to visit Iguazu Falls, one of the world’s largest waterfalls. Iguazu contains around 300 falls located on the borders of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, extending over 2,700 metres in a semi-circular shape. There is only one world to describe these falls: EPIC. In fact, upon seeing Iguazu, Eleanor Roosevelt reportedly exclaimed “Poor Niagara” … yes they ARE that epic.

Foz do Iguacu Brazil
Devil’s Throat

Brazil is so much more than crime; it is a country filled to the brim with laughter, love and beauty. So what are you waiting for?


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The Natural Wonder of Brazil

16 Comments

    1. Fantastic post! I haven’t made it to Brazil yet but it has been on my list for a while. Really informative and fun read.

    1. Your photos are amazing! I had a very brief trip to Rio I saw the highlights but missed the Igazu Falls, such a shame. I guess I’ll need another visit.

      1. There are just so many things to do in Brazil. I can’t wait to go back and explore a little more

    1. This is a good birds-eye view of Brazil with such amazing photos. What about Sao Paolo? Is it worth a visit, too?

      1. I haven’t been to Sao Paolo, but I haven’t heard too many good things about it. It’s a big city and it is a little more industrial than Rio. I would stick to the coast personally, but I would research more about what to do there because not everything that you hear is true!

    1. Many thank’s for sharing this great travel tips. They will be very helpful to me as I will go for my first time ever to Brasil next month, can’t wait for it!

    1. Brazil’s in my dreams for a long time…
      I know I need to make this dream come true, but still there are no favorable circumstances to get me to that part of our beautiful World 😉

        1. Sure, but I’m a kind of Japanophile, so I spend all my money to go East from Europe, not West, and that’s the case 😉

    1. You took some really beautiful pictures! It’s sad that Brazil has such a negative reputation. And you’re right, the Iguazu falls are epic! I saw them from the Argentina side and thought they were breathtaking.

    1. Iguazu Falls look amazing – I want to visit so badly! Have you visited from both sides – Brazil and Argentina?

      I didn’t realize you could see them from Paraguay as well – never hear about that perspective.

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