From private boat charters down the Amazon River to Rio Carnival’s samba spectacles with VIP access, discover those swoon-worthy experiences that make Brazil a truly beguiling destination.
HELICOPTER OVER THE IGUAZU FALLS
For unrivalled views of the iconic Iguazu Falls, take to the skies in a private helicopter ride to view its thundering cataracts, expansive curtains of water and extreme mist. This is undoubtedly one of the best things to do in Brazil with that building sense of anticipation as the helicopter blades start to whirr and you begin to leave gravity behind. Up in the air, the photo opportunities are sublime with unobstructed views of the falls and no other people to contend with for prime photographic spots. Just you gazing in awe at one of nature’s most humbling creations.
EMBARK ON A JAGUAR SAFARI
One of the best things to do in Brazil has to be a jaguar safari in the Southern Pantanal. The Onçafari Jaguar Project is one of the few places in the world where you can get close to these elusive big cats in the wild. Spend a full day with the habituation team obsessively dedicated to sustaining these magnificent creatures - checking camera traps, scouring for paw prints and collecting data from satellite collars. Set off at sunset on foot or you can even ask for a wake-up call at night to steal out in the tall grass and if you’re lucky, spot them on the hunt.
VISIT THE ICONIC SUGARLOAF AND CHRIST THE REDEEMER
Explore Rio’s two iconic monuments. Firstly, Sugarloaf Mountain which you can scale on a cable car over its two peaks. At the top, 396 metres above sea level, you can devour gorgeous views of yacht-speckled bays, undulating Atlantic Forest and Rio’s famed Copacabana beach. Onto the Corcovado Mountain for a picture with Christ the Redeemer, its art-deco structure looming over the city at 38-metres tall and even more astounding at close range. Visit in the evening and the panoramas of twinkling Rio against a purple blotted sky are worth the 200-step climb to reach the statue’s enormous foot.
CHARTER A BOAT DOWN THE AMAZON RIVER
Journey into the heart of the Amazon chartering a regional-style wooden vessel, arguably the best way to see the storied waterways and wildlife. From the jungle city of Manaus, explore the tributaries of the Tapajos and Negro rivers and spend time meeting isolated jungle communities and trekking nature trails with naturalist guides. In some parts, the pale blue shallows and white sand beaches of remote islands wouldn’t look out of place in the Caribbean. Pass your days fishing and water skiing and end them watching the sunset with cocktails on the top deck followed by dinner on the beach, toes dug in the sand.
EXPERIENCE THE RIO CARNIVAL
Join the world’s largest, most flamboyant party, the Rio Carnival. Learn to samba with the city’s top performers and witness the extravagant floats parade down the streets. Dressed for the occasion in glitzy, bedazzling costume – anything goes - watch the legendary Sambadrome Parade in a space built specially for the event. The most energetic and competitive scenes occur on the final evening when you can watch the champion samba schools display their talents from the comfort of a VIP stand offering a never-ending flow of drinks and food. Tickets to the most exclusive after parties guarantee glamour, opulence and celebrity guest lists.
AFRICAN RHYTHM IN SALVADOR
Experience the rhythm and rhyme of Salvador’s African beats originating from its history as one of the largest slave ports in the Americas. The Afro-Brazilian culture is prevalent throughout the sea-sweeping city from its delicious street food to its deep-rooted love of music. Accompanied by a local guide, learn about the intoxicating samba-reggae scene that takes over the streets as well as religious Candomblé ceremonies and highly energetic percussion ensembles called blocos, the most famous named Olodum, who famously collaborated with Michael Jackson. You could join in a jamming session or simply watch and learn from musicians expertly playing the flute, drums and steel guitar.