With the launch of Norwegian’s low-cost flight to Rio de Janeiro (Galeão International Airport) from London Gatwick Airport on 31 March 2019, there has never been a better time for travellers to choose Brazil for their next long-haul holiday.
Located between the mountains, sea and forest – and now more affordable than ever – Rio de Janeiro is the perfect base place from which to explore.
Visitors can enjoy some of Brazil’s best-known landmarks, from Christ the Redeemer at Corcovado Mountain and Floresta da Tijuca, the world’s largest urban forest, to famous beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema. At Sugar Loaf Mountain they can take the Pão de Açúcar cable car and enjoy the stunning views over one of the most unique landscapes of any city in the world.
From Rio, visitors are ideally placed to check out some other beautiful spots along the coast, including:
A true seaside paradise, and 174km from Rio de Janeiro, the village of Búzios is one of Brazil’s most upscale resorts, surrounded by greenery, pristine beaches and clear waters. The village rose to fame in the 1960s when Brigitte Bardot visited the region, andput it firmly on the map as a boutique holiday destination.
The town has since grown, with the bustling Rua das Pedras (Stone Street) at its centre, with bars and restaurants for all tastes, not to mention art galleries and luxury shopping. The perfect place for windsurfing, kite surfing, diving, hiking and island hopping, Búzios’ many scenic beaches include Geribá Beach (the surfers’ haven), Ferradura Beach (good for snorkeling), Armação, Azeda and João Fernandes.
Located 243km from Rio, the coastal historic town of Paraty is surrounded by around 50 beaches and 65 islands, with reputation for excellent diving. Founded in the 17th century, and once a thriving port for the export of gold, Paraty’s cobbled streets with brightly painted houses and ancient churches showcase a wealth of colonial architecture.
Paraty is known for its natural beauty, and is surrounded by several natural pools and waterfalls, including the Cachoeira da Pedra Branca – the perfect spot for an early morning swim. Its pretty historical centre, plenty of restaurants and cachaça bars, architecture and exuberant flora and fauna mean Paraty is the perfect destination for travellers wishing to relax and explore.
For those who wants to see cultural events, the city is home of two big festivals, the FLIP (International Literary Festival of Paraty) and the Bourbon Music Festival Paraty. Both events occur annually.
More than 50 beaches and 365 islands make up one of the most famous bays in Brazil along the Costa Verde (Green coast)Angra dos Reis which is 100km from Rio. So beautiful that it has been elected one of the 7 wonders of Rio de Janeiro, the Iha Grande is the biggest island in the region, and a true tropical retreat.
Pristine white sandy beaches, blue-green waters, coral reefs and shipwrecks make it one of the most sought out places for diving, and its rugged landscape makes it an ideal place for trekking and exploration on foot. There are also plenty of historic buildings to visit, such as the Holy Trinity church, the monument to Aquidaba at Jacuecanga’s Bay, and Leme’s Fort. Angra’s East end also has a selection of hotels and restaurants.
Located 68 km from Rio, Petrópolis, is one of the favourite spots of cariocas (those who are born in Rio). Beautiful and luxurious guesthouses and award-winning restaurants await visitors to Petrópolis, which is an area of great historical significance, having received heads of State, Ministers and nobles throughout its history.
Built in the mid-nineteenth century as a summer palace for Emperor D Pedro II, the Imperial Museum has a vast collection of imperial trinkets, while the São Pedro de Alcântara Cathedral houses a mausoleum containing the remains of the e and his wife, Dona Teresa Cristina. The Palacio Rio Negro and the Palacio de Cristal can also be explored and Dumont there is even an attraction dedicated to the history of aviation – the Museu Casa de Santos.
For more information, please visit: www.visitbrasil.com.
Mark Bibby Jackson
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