The word “Brazil” often brings images of:
- Scantily clad bikini models balancing large feathered headdresses and tiptoeing on stilettos that look like they were originally made to act as weapons,
- Football (soccer) teams sporting green and yellow jerseys dripping with sweat as they kick, bounce and run with a grass-stained ball, and
- Amazonian jungles with more lush green flora and fauna that would take months to list in full.
Combine the three, and you get a rather odd picture. Brazil is an amazingly diverse country built on Portuguese culture, Catholic beliefs, a love of art and life, appreciation for nature, and a fascination with a ball. For its incomparable selection of traits, we’re making Brazil the destination of the month for August.
BikeHike Adventures in Brazil
We’ve run trips to Brazil in the past, but always in combination with our Argentinian adventures. We’re thrilled to announce that we are now offering a new exclusively Brazilian adventure:
High Energy Extravaganza (9 Days)
Activities: Biking, Hiking, Kayaking, Zip-lining, & Canyoning
Trip Difficulty Rating: Moderate
Price: $2,599 USD Land Only
Take in the smorgasbord of sights and sounds that make up Rio before venturing into the remote villages, jungles and fjords where you’ll be spending the majority of your time on this adventure. Days are spent hiking up through lush rainforests to mountain peaks for spectacular views, zipping down original sections of the Gold Trail by bike, paddling past picturesque colonial towns, and end in comfortable guest houses and boutique hotels. Start your mornings with Brazil’s famous aromatic espresso to give yourself that extra kick to tackle the adventures that await you on this high energy extravaganza.
Highlights of Brazil
Google users beware, there’s more than one “sugarloaf mountain” in Brazil. The name originates from the classic mound-like look of a refined loaf of sugar (one of Brazil’s primary exports). While Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio is the most famous (it was in the 1979 James Bond film Moonraker), Brazil boasts loads of little sugarloafs that offer great hiking trails and stunning views of the surrounding areas. Hiking up one of these trails is a great way to spend the afternoon, and get to know the region you’re visiting.
When a country designates over 700,000 square kilometers of its land as protected Amazon rainforest, how can you say you’ve really travelled to Brazil without taking a step into the jungle? Brazil is home to about a third of the world’s remaining rainforests that provide shelter for thousands of species of plants, birds, and mammals (including the jaguar). Make sure you take a peak while you’re there!
Rio was recently named one of the Top 10 beach cities by National Geographic (July 2010). If you want the beach and the gorgeous weather without the crowds, head to one of Brazil’s many deserted beaches. Brazil has over 7,000 kilometers of coastline, so your perfect retreat won’t be hard to find.
Mamangua Tropical Fjord
Take a dip into the many shades of blue in this tropical paradise. The area is frequented only by the residents of small local fishing villages, and a handful of visitors.
Colonial cities are linked to Paraty with cobblestone roads built by African slaves over 300 years ago. These roads make up the Gold Trail that was used to transport gold and diamonds back to Portugal in the 18th century. Walk in the footsteps of the slaves and agents of the Crown to discover Brazil’s rich history (pun intended).
Interesting Factoids About Brazil
- Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world, and spans three timezones
- Its major exports include soybeans and corned beef
- Over 70% of the country’s population is Roman Catholic (According to the 2000 Demographic Census)
- Brazil is the only Portuguese speaking country in the Americas
- The country will be hosting the 2014 FIFA World Cup
- Scientists estimate that the number of plant and animal species found in Brazil could be upwards of four million (they also have the world’s largest selection of monkeys)
- Brasilia is the capital city of Brazil (not Sao Paolo or Rio)
- “fio dental” (dental floss) is slang for a Brazilian bikini