Brazil is synonym with many exciting words like diversity, freedom, exoticism, beauty and fun! You can never say not to visiting such a country. But when you do visit, where do you go? What’s the best place to see and which are the most interesting attractions of Brazil? Well, here you have a list of ten of the most exciting destinations in this fascinating country. We hope it’ll help you make up your mind and start packing for a nice exotic trip.
1. Ipanema, Rio de Janeiro
According to Travel Chanel, Ipanema boasts the sexiest beach in the world. Interesting description, isn’t it? This beach neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro has been a muse for many artists. “Garota de Ipanema” for instance is a song that was written in 1962 by composer Anonio Carlos, with lyrics by Vinicius de Moraes. This was a famous hit during the 1960s and it even won a Grammy in 1965 for Record of the Year. The neighborhood is now one of the most alluring places in Rio de Janeiro, for locals and tourists alike.
2. Lapa, Rio de Janeiro
Another cultural icon of Rio de Janeiro is Lapa, a neighborhood in the city’s urban center. This is a growing arts community and a place where nightlife is always fun and exciting. Lapa is also famous for its 18th century architecture, especially for the Arcos da Lapa, also known as the Carioca Aqueduct, which is an impressive series of raised aqueducts. Other highlights of the neighborhood are the Metropolitan Cathedral of Rio and Passeio Publico, the city’s first public park.
3. The Painted Favelas in Rio de Janeiro
“Favelas” are the shanty areas of Rio where the poorest people of the city live. They used to be completely unattractive, but since artists Dre Urhahn and Jeroen Koolhaas started working with the locals to embellish their neighborhoods, the painted favelas in Rio have become truly spectacular. The colorful art that covers the buildings have given their inhabitants a pretty good reason to be proud. It’s never entirely safe to visit these areas, but if you’re sure you’ve got your back covered, these favelas in Rio are definitely worth seeing.
4. Corcovado, Rio de Janeiro
You probably remember this particular destination from another similar list of ours. Rising above the city, on the mountain of Corcovado, is the immense statue representing Christ The Redeemer with his arms open to embrace the world. Visit this place and see for yourself why the statue and the harbor below have been marked as wonders of the modern world.
5. Oscar Niemeyer’s Architecture
You can’t go to a big and famous Brazilian city and not come across a fascinating modern building created by Oscar Niemeyer. Probably one of the greatest architects that ever lived on Brazil, Niemeyer is now 103 years old and still strong enough to work. Some of the most important buildings in Brasilia (the capital of Brazil) have been created by him: the Palácio da Alvorada (the home of the country’s presidents), the Supreme Court, the National Theater, the National Congress Building, the National Library, the Ministry of justice and more. In 2010 the famed architect opened a museum of his works.
After you’ve had enough dynamism in Rio, you can go to the quieter and lower-paced Paraty, a seaside town that is meant to help you relax and unwind in a wonderful natural environment. Founded in the late 1600s by Portuguese settlers, Paraty boasts a beautiful architecture of the 17th and 18th century. Near the coast however, new contemporary buildings have emerged, giving this place a fresh touch of modern life.
7. Iguazu Falls
Iguazu Falls (Iguassu Falls, or Iguaçu Falls) are some of the most beautiful and most fascinating falls in the world. It belongs to both Brazil and Argentina, because it is actually a national border between the two countries. But if you want to visit it, you can only do so from Brazil, because Iguazu is not accessible from Argentina. Iguazu is one of the widest falls in the world, with more than 250 individual waterfalls disrupted by islands and terraces.
8. Ouro Preto
If you love visiting places with a rich historical and cultural background, then Ouro Preto is perfect for you. It is a mining town built during the gold boom of the late 17th century and it has a rich cultural history. With an early Baroque architecture, amazing churches, important museums and even tour-friendly mines, Ouro Preto is a UNESCO World Heritage site. This is definitely one of the best tourist destinations in Brazil.
9. Sao Paulo
This is the largest city in the Americas. Yes, it’s larger than the largest city in the States and bigger than any city in the southern hemisphere. This should be a good enough reason to make you want to buy a plane ticket to Sao Paulo. Over eleven million people live in this immense city which has to offer so much in terms of arts, entertainment, culture, architecture, gastronomy and virtually everything a traveler would like to experience.
10. Salvador da Bahia
When you hear of a foreign country that has a “capitol of happiness”, you simply have to go and se it for yourself. Salvador da Bahia is one of the oldest cities in the Americas, as it was built in 1549. Over 80 percent of the people living here are of African descent, which makes this city a place of truly fascinating culture, cuisine and artistry. The famous Capoeira – martial arts mixed with dance moves – was born here, invented by Afro-Brazilian performers. The world’s biggest carnival party, which is also the greatest street party, happens in Salvador. This and the fact that the city’s people are famous for their easygoing personality, throwing countless street parties all year long, has earned Salvador da Bahia the title of “Brazil’s capitol of happiness”.