Bountiful Brazil holidays
The largest country in South America, Brazil occupies a great triangular swathe of the continent’s eastern coast and shares borders every other South American country except Chile and Ecuador. It’s a huge, captivating country ranging from powder-white beaches and dense tropical rainforest to pulse-quickening sights like Rio de Janeiro’s Christ the Redeemer Statue and gigantic Iguazu Falls.
Beach lovers will be in their element here, as there’s over 7,000 kilometres of golden coastline to explore and a stretch of sand to suit every taste, from showy city beaches like Copacabana to deserted, palm-fringed swathes of silver, like the tranquil bays of Ilha Grande. The Brazilians have an infectious love for life, and certainly know how to celebrate. At no time is this more evident than during Carnival, when the city of Rio de Janeiro erupts in a jubilant display of music, dance and colourful costumes.
If you only visit one place, it has to be Rio de Janeiro. Brazil’s signature city oozes South American beauty, passion and artistic flair.
Brazil’s most famous city is also home to the biggest, liveliest and most colourful carnival in the world, when close to two million people come to party on the streets. If you don’t come for carnival, other signature Rio sights include Sugarloaf Mountain, Corcovado Mountain with its crowning Christ the Redeemer statue and the golden sweep of Copacabana Beach.
Spanning the border between Argentina and Brazil, both countries can lay claim to this gargantuan natural wonder. Iguazú Falls is almost three kilometres wide, a chain of almost 300 separate drops, each between 60 and 80 metres high. Mostly, the falls are surrounded by pristine, glittering green rainforest, which just adds to the drama and grandeur of the place.
Brazil is the Southern Hemisphere, so remember the seasons are the opposite way around to ours in the UK. However the tropical and subtropical climate make it a year-round destination, with temperatures rarely below 20oC except in the mountains and far south. Being such a large country, Brazil’s climate varies greatly from north to south, from hot and dry in the arid interior to humid in the tropical rainforests of the Amazon jungle.
Portuguese is the official language in Brazil, and it’s spoken by almost all the population.
The official currency is the Brazilian Real (BRL). One Real is divided into 100 centavos. Credit and debit cards are widely accepted, and you’ll find ATMs in all the large cities.
The UK is four hours ahead of Brazil.
You can fly non-stop from London to Rio de Janeiro. The flight takes about 11 hours and 45 minutes. You can also fly from London direct to Sao Paulo which is about the same flight time.
Although tipping isn’t expected, it’s usual (and appreciated) if you tip for good service in restaurants, bars and cafes in Brazil, particularly in big cities and areas that are popular with tourists. About 10% is a good rough guide.
British passport holders don’t need a visa to travel to Brazil as a tourist, but your passport must be valid for at least six months from the date you arrive. However, entry requirements can change so we recommend that you check before you travel. CIBT provide a useful tool to do this at CIBT visas or you can visit GOV.UK.
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